L.danielle's Reviews > The Awakening / The Struggle

The Awakening / The Struggle by L.J. Smith
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U 50x66
's review
Nov 11, 2011

really liked it

I enjoyed the book but don't know that I want to read the rest of the series. I'll just enjoy the CW show, even though I know it's different. =)
I honestly wanted to read this because of the Twilight phenomenon. Not because I'm just craving more vampire romance, but because I was honestly curious as to what it was about Twilight that triggered so much adoration when teen vampire novels were honestly nothing new. L.J.'s Vampire Diaries came around long before Twilight, so I wondered, "What's the difference?"
After reading this book, I think I know why. This has all the same Twilight-esque elements: hottie mystery boy, girl who falls for him and figures out he's a vampire, drama ensues. BUT, this book gets its hands dirty, where-as Twilight keeps it all chaste, sparkly, and relatively action-less. In the Vampire Diaries, Stefan frequently feeds/bites Elena, and she in turn drinks his blood. The descriptions of this act are sexual in nature. Hence, this books goes to a much darker place than Twilight ever does. Twilight lives in sweet, sparkly, romance land, and Vampire Diaries is dark, creepy, and sexually threatening.
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Also, Elana is described as a gorgeous, popular, blonde who can have any boy she wants. This makes her less relate-able (if not more colorful) than the awkward, self-deprecating Bella.
And then there's Damon. Damon, Damon, Damon. He's part of the reason this book has so much grit and bite. I respect that.
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