Early life Sam was raised on the Quileute reservation by his mother, Allison Uley. The stress of providing for a family was too much for his father, who left when Sam was very young. Sam took on most of what should have been his father's responsibilities, and as a result he was always very mature for his age. He had been taught the old werewolf legends about his great-grandfather, Levi Uley, but like everyone else of his generation, Sam believed they were myths.
When he was a sophomore in high school, Sam began dating Leah Clearwater. During his senior year he became the first of his generation to phase into a wolf. Having no idea what had happened to him and struck by panic, he hid deep in the forest for two weeks. Finally, he calmed down enough that he turned back into a human while he slept. He snuck home and told no one about his experience. He wouldn't talk to his mother or to Leah, he believed that he'd gone insane and was having delusions.
He lived in fear of another transformation until Quil Ateara III stopped by to see Allison and happened to shake Sam's hand. Old Quil had been taught to recognize the signs of a werewolf who has already phased, or is about to. Sam's high temperature and recently unexplained disappearance made the situation clear to Old Quil. That night, Old Quil, Billy Black and Harry Clearwater went to Sam's house and invited him to a council meeting and explained that they knew what had happened to him and that everything he thought were myths were really facts, and that some members of their tribe have the power to transform into werewolves, and that there are real vampires. The appearance of the Cullen family was the cause of his transformation. After that, he took his responsibility toward the tribe very seriously. Though everything became clear, he had trouble controlling his newfound powers. When Jared Cameron and Paul Lahote started phasing, he took the responsibility of explaining and teaching them how to control their powers. They bonded through shared experience and mutual secrecy.
His relationship with his mother and Leah became more difficult because he couldn't give away any information about what had happened to him. His relationship with Leah was strained, but not broken. When Leah's cousin, Emily Young came to town for a visit, Sam was asked to stop by their house to hang out. He had already met Emily several times, and liked her very much. However, when he met her for the first time after he phased, he imprinted on her the moment he looked into her eyes. Fighting the urge to be near Emily, he left without a word. That night, he went to the Clearwaters' house and broke up with Leah without explanation, though he was consumed with painful guilt of breaking Leah's heart. Though she was devastated, she hoped for the future, but he told her to give up on him.
Sam then spent two days waiting for Emily to return to her home in Neah Bay. He forced himself to stay away while she was with Leah, determined to keep from hurting Leah anymore than was absolutely necessary. Emily was surprised to see Sam, having heard about the breakup. She was horrified when he explained that he had broken up with Leah in order to be with her. He obeyed when she told him to leave, but didn't stay away for long. Eventually, he told her all his secrets and even phased in front of her. At that point, she had no choice but to believe, but she still couldn't accept his feelings for her. However, she didn't order him to leave and never come back. So he returned, and they continued to argue. Emily wanted him to go back to Leah and try to make it work, but Sam didn't want to hurt Leah anymore.
As time passed, Emily began to spend time with Sam, letting him tell her everything from the dangers of vampires to the legends of the tribe, and was even introduced to other members of his wolf pack. But then she heard rumors about her behavior and realized what it looked like to Leah. She then ordered Sam to stay away from her and go back to Leah. Although he could agree to stay away, he couldn't agree to be with Leah again; he did not want to hurt her further by pretending. Emily, though aware of his pure caring for Leah's well-being, shoved him away and called him a liar, saying that he was running away from his responsibilities just like his father had. Hearing Joshua's name caused Sam to accidentally phase, his restraining hand turning into claws and raking down her face and right arm. Sam, believing that he had killed the woman that he loved, became frantic and could not calm himself to phase back. Jared was able to hear him in wolf form and contacted Paul and Sue Clearwater, who was a nurse and aware of the tribe's secrets. They managed to get Emily to the nearest hospital. To keep their secret safe, they told the doctor that Emily had been mauled by a bear. It took time for Sam to calm down and become human again, though he was still burned by pain. Jared kept him updated on Emily's condition, which was not critical.
The next afternoon, Jared told Sam that Emily was asking for him. Sam went into Emily's hospital room and saw her face covered with bandages. They both knew that she was scarred for life. Sam asked her to tell him to kill himself so that he could escape the misery; he couldn't commit suicide without knowing for certain that this was what she wanted. But Emily had asked him to visit because she knew how horrified he would be and how unintentional his action had been. She didn't want him to blame himself for what was truly an accident. She had already forgiven him. She also had realized, as she lay there in the hospital, that the one person she really wanted there with her was Sam, as she felt lonely and incomplete without him.
Sam never completely forgave himself, but he put those feelings aside as much as possible to make Emily happy. Emily no longer fought her feelings. Though Leah was furious with them, their relationship progressed easily as they found it effortless to be close both emotionally and physically.
- "The Cullens don't come here."
- ―Sam, on the Cullens.[src]
Sam Uley first appears with a minor role in Twilight as a nineteen-year-old local who arrives at First Beach with a group of other Quileute teenagers to socialize with Bella Swan and her friends. He is the one who informed Bella that the Cullens "don't come here", pointing to La Push.
As the other boys on the reservation phase in turn throughout New Moon, Sam takes on the role of substituting Alpha, leading them through their change and helping them to become accustomed to their new life. To outsiders, it seems as if he had started a cult and raises quite some attention.
By the time Embry Call phases, the Cullens have moved away from Forks. Embry's transformation is a surprise to everyone, because they don't know anything about his origins other than his mother being descended from the Makah tribe.
Sam waits for Jacob Black, the heir of the last Alpha wolf, Ephraim Black, to phase. When he finally does, Sam wants him to take the place of Alpha for the pack. However, Jacob is opposed to leading it, and insists that Sam stay in charge, to which the rest also agree. It is Sam who gave him the injunction (an absolute command given by the Alpha) not to inform Bella about his transformation. When Laurent tries to kill Bella in the meadow, Sam and his pack make their first appearance in wolf forms and kill the vampire. Once she figures out the truth, Sam accepts her help with the search for Victoria and they provide protection to both her and her father since the Cullens are no longer in town, which enables them to expand their protection areas. However, it all changes when the Cullens return, and they are forced to reduce their area to La Push.
In Eclipse, when the Cullens chase Victoria to the Quileute border, Sam and his pack attempt to attack her, but she manages to slip away. He is present at the bonfire held by the Quileute council, where Billy Black tells legends about their tribe.
When the Cullens find out about her creation of a newborn vampire army and their decision to attack them in Forks, Sam and his pack agree to side with the Cullens to fight the army. With strategies orchestrated by Jasper Hale, they manage to win the battle without any casualties on their side, though Jacob gets seriously injured after saving Leah Clearwater from a hiding newborn. It was through this alliance that Sam begins to trust the Cullens a little bit.
Jacob explains Sam's relationship with Emily and Leah to Bella at one point in the story, and tells her the effect of imprinting.
When Jacob decides to run away to escape his pain over Bella's rejection, Sam orders his pack members to leave him be, knowing that he needs some time alone.
In Breaking Dawn, Sam and some of his pack members are present at Bella and Edward's wedding to stop Jacob from losing control.
When Jacob tries to get the pack to kill the Cullens in the belief that Bella has become a vampire, Sam refuses to attack, stating that she chose to become one. He also believes the Cullens are not as bad as they appear. Later, when Jacob informs the pack that Bella is pregnant, Sam declares that they have to kill both her and the child, as a necessary casualty to protect the tribe and the Forks community. Jacob embraces the Alpha heritage in his blood and he, Seth and Leah Clearwater leave the pack to form their own. Sam concluded that if Bella was killed, Jacob would be so mad that he would lead both packs in attacking the child. This never happened: Jacob wanted to kill Renesmee, but imprinted on her once he saw her. Because of this, Sam and his pack were left with no choice but to declare true peace with the Cullens.
In Breaking Dawn - Part 1, Sam appears on the beach with Emily and playing soccer with his pack. Overhearing Jacob's plan to kill Edward if he bites Bella, Sam tells him he won't because the Cullens were not a danger to the tribe or the town. He also reminds Jacob that he is in charge. He later meets up with his pack to discuss killing an unborn Renesmee. He uses his Alpha command to stop a fight between Jacob and Leah and then to force Jacob and Seth to bow down to him after they protest about fighting that night. He is shocked and angered to see Jacob resist him and rise to his rightful Alpha status. He later informs Billy about Jacob's betrayal for the Cullens. After being informed by Paul of Bella's "death" because of Renesmee, Sam storms off with his pack to fight the Cullens. Sam mainly fights Edward and even manages to pin him to the ground, only to be kicked away by Carlisle and Esme. Jacob stops the fight and informs him of his imprinting on Renesmee using his limited telepathy. Since their tribe's most important law is to never harm another wolf's imprinted one, Sam has no choice but to retreat with his pack.
Over the next few months, Sam and his pack would occasionally accompany Charlie to visit the Cullens, and Sam and Emily come to love the baby that he once wanted to destroy.
When Alice Cullen and Jasper Hale go to La Push and ask for permission to cross into their land so they can go straight into the ocean, Sam personally accompanies them to the beach. Alice then gives him a note and tells him to wait until her family comes looking to give the note to Carlisle, telling him to obey as if their lives depend on it. When they do come, Sam tells them everything, but then grows resentful of Alice and Jasper for abandoning their family when danger is so near. Carlisle advises them not to involve themselves in the Volturi's business, but Sam replies that their packs cannot abandon Jacob and Renesmee, and describes her as part of their family as much as she is the Cullens'.
As the vampire crowd increased in Forks, four new members are added to Sam's pack. Leah, Seth, Embry and Quil are assigned to run with him for the time being to avoid conflict. Sam and his pack stand with the Cullens during the confrontation with the Volturi, with Bella secretly protecting all of them with her power. However, the battle is prevented and after the incident, Sam and his pack return to La Push, and only Jacob goes back to the Cullen house.
In Breaking Dawn - Part 2, Sam is shown making amends with Jacob and later gives the Cullens the note Alice left for them after she and Jasper crossed their lands to get to the ocean. In Alice's vision of the battle, Sam leads both packs in the charge against the Volturi. He is shown destroying many of the Volturi guards and, with assistance from Alice, destroys Jane by biting her head off. The battle doesn't commence, however, and Sam leaves with his fellow wolves.
Sam is described as having long, rounded muscles, a very deep voice, an older face, copper skin, cropped black hair and brown eyes. Like the other werewolves in human form, Sam is described as being quite tall, around 6'6", only under Jacob.
Also, in the New Moon movie, Sam, like all werewolves, has a large tattoo on his upper right arm.
As a wolf, Sam is described as having black fur. He is huge, quiet as a shadow, tall as a horse but more muscular, with dagger-like incisors and golden eyes, although they were dark blue in the New Moon film. He has a grisly snarl and is very swift. He is also said to be the second largest wolf, smaller only than Jacob. In Eclipse Quil said, "So that's why Sam's all black. Black heart, black fur."
Personality and traits
Sam is said to have been very mature since childhood, due to his father's disappearance. He took on most of the responsibilities that his father should have taken. He is also known to be tough, but caring and loving to his family and friends. Due to his hatred for his father, he does not like hearing him mentioned; even if it is by accident, he will become so angry that he phases.
As his pack grows in number, Sam struggles with his role of Alpha, sometimes being too slow to take command, other times going too far with his authority by forcing the others with his Alpha voice. He tries hard to balance his leadership and do the best for his pack. Jacob and many others think of him as a good Alpha. He is also known for sometimes making rash decisions when a potential threat is near, and will go against anything to stop it, as shown when he decides to throw away the treaty their great-grandfathers made with the Cullens to kill Bella's baby before she is born, because he worries about what she is carrying.
- "You will perform this obligation."
- ―Sam giving Alpha command to Jacob[src]
Sam is one of the physically strongest wolves. As the Alpha of his pack, Sam shows the voice typical of the first in command, able to force his fellow wolves to obey orders against their will. His voice is weaker than Jacob's, however, because he has earned his place as Alpha while Jacob was born with the right to be Alpha.
While still subject to unlimited telepathy within his pack and the consequent lack of privacy, he can communicate telepathically with other Alphas, and has control on the subjects he shares. Also, as Alpha of the pack, Bella's shield can cover the entire pack by merely shielding Sam alone. This also proves that if Sam falls victim to mental powers, his entire pack will be affected as well.
Sam is the only child of Joshua and Allison Uley, distant cousin of Leah and Seth Clearwater, and most probably the older half-brother of Embry Call. In The Twilight Saga: The Official Illustrated Guide, Embry's name exists on the Uley family tree, suggesting that he may be Joshua Uley's son and thus Sam's half-brother.
- "Sam hates himself for hurting Leah."
- ―Jacob, on Sam and Leah[src]
Leah Clearwater is Sam's ex-girlfriend. They dated all throughout high school and cared for each other very much, even though Sam could not tell the truth about phasing into a wolf. Their relationship ended when Leah brought her cousin Emily for a visit, and Sam imprinted on her. After Leah turned into a werewolf, she is forced to endure hearing Sam's never-ending thoughts about Emily. Thus, her learning about imprinting, which Sam was forbidden to tell her about during their breakup, and her broadcasting of her pining for him, made her very bitter and vent her pain and anger on the pack. This notwithstanding, they still love each other and want the very best for the other. Sam is deeply upset and hurt when Leah leaves to join Jacob's pack and sends Jared to ask her to come back, telling him to get on his knees and beg, doing anything to convince her to rejoin Sam's pack, even calling her "Lee-Lee" - Sam's nickname for her from when they were dating.
- Main article: Sam Uley and Emily Young
- "Sam got angry. Lost it for a split second. He'll never be able to take that back."
- ―Jacob on Emily's permanent wounds[src]
Emily Young is Leah's second cousin and Sam's fiancée.
After becoming a shape-shifter, Sam imprinted on Emily, and at some point before New Moon they became engaged. She was furious at first, but she was meant to be with Sam, and fell in love with him. When he first asked Emily out, she flat out refused, knowing it would hurt Leah. He lost control of his anger and hurt Emily, leaving her horribly scarred on the right side of her face and all the way down her right arm, reaching to her hand. Despite that, Sam loves her unconditionally, but has never forgiven himself for losing control.
Jared Cameron is the Beta of Sam's pack, and his best friend. They were casual friends in school, but after Jared phased for the first time, Sam instructed him on how to change back and told him everything else about the tribe's legends. They bonded through this experience and became each other's best friend.
After Jacob Black left the pack to protect Bella and built his own pack in Breaking Dawn, Jared is promoted to Beta, i.e. second-in-command of the pack.
Jacob Black is Sam's fellow Alpha companion. The relationship between Jacob and Sam before their transformation is unexplained, although they have known each other since childhood. When Jacob's friend, Embry, phased, Sam took care of him and made him part of his pack. Jacob was unaware of what was really happening and blamed Sam for turning his friend. When he started phasing, however, he finally understood Sam's situation and their relationship turned friendlier. Sam has no desire of leading the pack, but since Jacob refused to take his position for Alpha, he is forced to take that role.
Their friendship is greatly damaged when Bella gets pregnant and Sam decides to make an unprovoked attack to prevent a potential threat upon the humans of Forks and La Push, but Jacob disagrees. Sam tries to force everyone using Alpha command, and Jacob breaks away from the pack by embracing his power of Alpha wolf. With Jacob, Seth, and Leah gone, Sam decides to play the situation by ear and make his decision later. After Jacob imprinted on Renesmee, Sam is forced to declare permanent peace with Jacob and the Cullens. Their friendship begins to reconcile after this. Despite this damage and distance, Sam thinks of him as part of their family.
- New Moon
- Breaking Dawn
|Ephraim Black's pack||Ephraim Black • Quil Ateara II • Levi Uley|
|Uley pack||Sam Uley • Jared Cameron • Paul Lahote • Brady Fuller • Collin Littlesea|
|Black pack||Jacob Black • Leah Clearwater • Seth Clearwater • Quil Ateara V • Embry Call|
|Ateara family||Quil Ateara III • more...|
|Black family||Billy Black • Rachel Black • Rebecca Black • Sarah Black • more...|
|Clearwater family||Harry Clearwater • Sue Clearwater • more...|
|Other characters||Kaheleha • Taha Aki • Taha Wi • The Third Wife • Yaha Uta • Yut • Utlapa • Tiffany Call • Kevin Littlesea • Emily Young • Claire Young • Solomon Finau • Kim|
|Locations||La Push, Washington • First Beach, Washington|
|Tribes||Makah tribe • Quileute tribe|
|Shapeshiftrs||Astral projection • Imprinting • Pack structure • Shape-shifter • Treaty|