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The Awakening: And The Struggle Bks. 1 & 2 - L J Smith

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Genre: Sci-Fi / Fantasy / Author: L J Smith / Paperback / 400 Pages / Book is published 2009-08-06 by Hodder Children's Books

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    7 Reviews
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      09.01.2011 12:01
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      Boo!

      I'd read the Twilight Saga and found myself a bit of an addict to vampires. I then ordered the Vampire Diaries and the Sookie Stackhouse novels to read. I began reading the Vampire Diaries first and found that this particular book, which contained both The Awakening and The Struggle, was in fact very enjoyable. The price was good - better value than buying the books seperately.

      The book is set in a high school and features a group of friends, Elena, Bonnie and Meredith. The story surrounds itself around Elena, the prettiest, most popular girl in school and her battle with arch rival Caroline. Elena keeps a diary which is a big part of the storyline and can provide much ammunition for Caroline, so look out for that.
      Elena meets the amazing and gorgeous Stefan Salvador, vampire, and falls in love with him. There are more struggles with Stefans brother, who is an 'evil' vampire, feasting on humans rather than animals like Stefan. However it would ruin the story if i mentiond more of this!
      It gave me goosebumps and made me shiver - it had just the right amount of fear, just like Vampires should do! I really enjoyed the love story between the two main characters, although it was slightly predicatable. Elena was not a likeable character at first, but she does tend to grow on people. Her friends are very likeable, however, as are both Stefan and Damon - though Damon also has to grow on you.

      The book seemed fantastic, so I then moved on to books 3 and 4. Unfortunately, I now believe that the Vampire Diaries were a waste of money as I stopped reading shortly after the fourth book. The storylines began to get ridiculous, and I was frustrated as I hadn't got to the ending of the series but just couldn't bear to carry on reading them. Disappointing, it was set up to be amazing as well.

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        05.01.2011 21:34
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        Can not wait to read the next one

        I first became hooked on Vampire stories after reading Stephanie Meyers 'Twilight Saga' and most recentley Rachael Caines 'Morganville' Series before I had never even thought I would enjoy them but you know what I really do which is what led me to give the 'Vampire Diaries'.

        This first book is made up of 2 stories The Awakening and The Struggle. The books rrp on this book is £6.99.

        Right then first off The Awakening......

        The Awakening is the beginning it introduces you to the main characters of the story I met Elena who is a girl who is the queen bee at her high school with people falling over themselves to be her friend she is the fair maiden of our story though she is not so fair she has quite an arrogant attitude towards her and is used to getting her own way we also get introduced to Elenas friends Bonnie and Meredith who are like her groupies. The Awakening also introduces us the Stefan who is our Vampire hunk for the story Stefan is of course troubled by his many years of living and is not happy being a vampire. We also meet Damon who is Stefan evil vampire brother I say evil because Stefan is a good feasting on animals type vampire whilst Stefan is an out to feast on humans vampire. The book occasinally flicks from the story to random passages from Elena diary though there is not as much diary as I thought there would be as the name implies.

        I found the introduction to The Vampire Diaries to be quite different and I was not sure if I was going to enjoy reading the book but once I got about quarter of the way through I was hooked and wanted to know what was going to happen next the book does get better once you adjust to the story. Elena is a character which I wanted to slap to start with with her self centered attitude so I didn't take to her initially however as the book goes on her character changes and I found myself warming to her a bit more. Stefan is very much the mysterious Vampire type with his moody behaviour but he was a character who is easy to take to. I enjoyed The Awakening and then jumped straight in to The Struggle it is handy having it 2 books in 1.

        The Struggle.....

        Again the story focuses on the main characters Elena, Stefan and this time his brother Damon as a love triangle begins. This book focuses on Elena finding out that Stefan is a Vampire and also the history behind how he and his brother became Vampires which of course if girl related and now they want to fight over Elena. Elena takes the whole vampire thing in her stride as you would and the story gets more interesting. This book I found was good from the start and continued straight on from The Awakening. This book I think was slightly better than the first one and has alot more action from the start this book has left me wanting more from The Vampire Diaries and I am now going to move onto Book 3 The Fury.

        Both stories were well written and once I got going I was hooked I will give this book 5 stars its a good read for any vampire fans and don't be put off if you didn't like the tv show like me the books are alot better which is usually the way with all books turned film or tv stories. With this book whats great is you get 2 in 1 you can also buy the books seperatley. If you are expecting a diary type read though you will be disapointed because as I said earlier the diary extracts are actually few and far between but that does not mean it is not a good book.
        Again the story focuses on the main characters Elena, Stefan and this time his brother Damon as a love triangle begins. This book focuses on Elena finding out that Stefan is a Vampire and also the history behind how he and his brother became Vampires which of course if girl related and now they want to fight over Elena. Elena takes the whole vampire thing in her stride as you would and the story gets more interesting. This book I found was good from the start and continued straight on from The Awakening. This book I think was slightly better than the first one and has alot more action from the start this book has left me wanting more from The Vampire Diaries and I am now going to move onto Book 3 The Fury.

        Both stories were well written and once I got going I was hooked I will give this book 5 stars its a good read for any vampire fans and don't be put off if you didn't like the tv show like me the books are alot better which is usually the way with all books turned film or tv stories. With this book whats great is you get 2 in 1 you can also buy the books seperatley. If you are expecting a diary type read though you will be disapointed because as I said earlier the diary extracts are actually few and far between but that does not mean it is not a good book.

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          17.09.2010 12:53
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          A story of true love and following your destiny.

          I started reading the series called The Vampire Diaries after the TV series finished season 1 on ITV 2. I can't wait for season 2. Anyway after it finished I thought to myself where am I going to get my weekly Vampire Diary hit from so I decided it would be a good idea to read the books. Since I started the first book I have not been able to put them down and am now on book 5. I'm not reading the TV tie in books though and there are many big differences to the TV series, to start with it seemed very strange but now I'm used to the differences. In this review I will be talking about books 1 and 2, The Awakening and The struggle because both books came in the one actual book.

          This book has a black cover and the Title is in White, there is a big red apple with a bite taken out of it with what looks like a few drops of blood running from it. In my opinion the cover gives a gothic style of feeling to it. This copy is 416 pages long (but remember it contains both book 1 and 2)

          The Vampire Diaries is written by L.J Smith, The awakening and The Struggle were published in 1991 along with The Fury, which I hope to also review soon, to this date L.J. Smith is still writing more books to follow on the Vampire Diaries series. (I can't believe these books were published all those years ago and yet I'm only now discovering the wonders of them) The Vampire Diaries follow the lives of Elena Gilbert, a group of her high school friends and two brothers who are vampires.

          The Awakening
          Here is where our story begins, a new student named Stefan Salvatore starts at Robert E Lee High School, Elena finds herself drawn to him and vows to her best friends Meredith and Bonnie (who claims to be a white witch) to make him hers even after the repeated snubbing that she gets from Stefan. Stefan finds himself making friends with a lad on the football team called Matt who happens to be Elena's ex boyfriend and Elena uses this to her advantage. Eventually after Elenas attempts at winning him over it seems that Stefan softens to her and they become close, although there is still a part of Stefan that is very reserved and Elena can sense that he is not totally relaxed around her. Once she finds out the secret that he never wanted her to know everything falls into place for her and now knowing Stefan is a vampire it explains all the things Elena couldn't understand about him.
          Stefans brother Damon also appears on the scene, he seems hell bent on making Stefan as unhappy as he possibly can and Elena can't understand how two brothers can hate each other as much as these two do and that is where she finds out the story of how they became Vampires.
          In the mean time there are some very peculiar goings on in Fells Church, there are people getting hurt and killed by random animal attacks and this turns the town into a frenzy, with no one feeling safe in their town anymore they go on a witch hunt and blame is thrown around where ever possible. Stefan disappears and as the town always thought there was something strange about the new comer they decide that this proves his guilt.
          The town ends up in a very dark place, can Elena and her friends figure out what is happening before their lives are changed forever?


          The Struggle
          This book starts again exactly where the first one finishes, Elena questions Damon about why Stefan disappeared and where they might find him but Damon refuses to help in the girls search for Stefan. Bonnie uses her psychic powers to help find Stefan.
          Elena has been keeping a diary and she finds this missing, before she knew Stefans secret she used to write thing about him and she realizes that the things she wrote could prove his guilt to the town who still believe he has something to do with the brutal attacks and Elena finds out that her old friend turned enemy has hold of it and is going to read it on Founders Day.
          Again Elena has to enlist the help of her friends to try and avoid tragedy, there is a race against time for them to avert disaster. Can the friends win their fight or will the sinister being triumph against the friends futile attempt at beating the unknown?

          As I have said previously once I started reading this book I could not put it down. I have become totally addicted to these books. It was very exciting and there is always a new strange happening going on and I wanted to know what was going to happen with every new chapter. I would definitely recommend this book and have already done so, I have recently lent this book to a friend and she has read almost the whole book in a week (she is also addicted to these books) and on my recommendation I have another two friends in a queue to lend this book to. With that being said I feel this book was extremely good value for money, it only cost me £3.59 at the time from the Waterstones website.

          This review is also on ciao under the same name.

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            30.08.2010 03:37
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            Amazing book !

            When I had head about the Vampire diaries series i was like oh great another twilight novel series copy cat. Like i love the Twilight saga to death but this, THIS IS AMAZING. It has EVERYTHING you could wish for in a vampire book and more! I love this book to death. I hate reading books more than once but this i read all the time. SERIOUSLY , even if you dont like the awakening you'll love this sequel. they say that the seques is never as good. well, this is nothing like that saying. I just cant believe the suspense and compassion between the three. Their hot, sexy and lusturous. Its crazy !Their's plenty of killing and even a car crash ! It's immensly descriptive. You can picture the setting and everything to a loose thread. but some how L.J, Smith does it with such pizzaz that its never boring ! HOW DOES SHE DO IT???? I definitely reccomend this book to ANYONE!

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              05.07.2010 17:57

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              Best books Ive read for years!

              I thought Twilight was good until I read the Vampire Diaries. They are 10 times as good as Twilight!

              The books have the usual story of a girl falling for a gorgeous vampire, but are a lot more exiting than other vampire books I have read. You do have to read them in order to understand the story, and the Tv series is not identical to the books. The books have two books in one and are fairly priced at an RRP of £6.99.

              The books are about Elena who falls for two vampire brothers, the handsome Stefan and Damon Salvator. This results in a love-triangle which continues throughout the series. There are quite a few main characters in the books, but not too many that you dont remember who is who. I would say that they are suitable for all girls 13-18.

              L.J.Smith is a great author and I love all her books.
              I could not put them down and read them all in a few days, and cannot wait for the next one!
              Every teenage girl needs to read these seriously addictive books!

              The TV show based on the books is currently in its 4th series on ITV2 and is my favourite TV show ever!

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              04.05.2010 11:27
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              Good entertaining read

              I was at a bit of a loss after finishing the 9th Sookie Stackhouse book as I still have over a month to go before the 10th one comes out so as I missed the TV series, I decided I would have a read of the Vampire Diaries books. I paid £3.48 for the first two books on Amazon.

              The Awakening

              Elena Gilbert is the most popular girl at school but she is feeling a bit out of sorts before starting a new school year after her holiday to France with her guardian and Aunt Judith and 4 year old sister Margaret. Stefan Salvatore has just moved to the town of Fell's Church as he is tired of living alone in Italy. He is able to read minds but has made a promise to only use his powers when absolutely necessary. He arrives at school on the first day in a Porsche 911 turbo which causes a stir amongst the other students. Elena is intrigued by the newcomer especially as he pays her no attention.

              Stefan starts to remember his student days from the first time around. He is the son of Guiseppe, Count di Salvatore and has a brother called Damon. The daughter of his father's friend Baron von Swartzschild, Katherine, is staying with the family in Italy to recover from a prolonged illness. Stefan fell in love with her the day she arrived but although she is friends with Stefan and shares a secret with him, she only has eyes for handsome Damon. Something terrible happened to Katherine and Stefan blames himself for it. He thinks that Elena looks just like Katherine so avoids being anywhere near her. This mortifies Elena who is used to getting all the attention.

              Stefan finally realises he can't be without Elena but there is something more sinister than Stefan in Fell's Church.

              Main Characters

              Elena Gilbert
              Margaret Gilbert
              Aunt Judith
              Bonnie
              Meredith (Elena's best friend)
              Stefan Salvatore
              Caroline (been friends with Elena since kindergarten but they are drifting apart)
              Matt Honeycutt (Elena's boyfriend)
              Robert - Judith's fiancée
              Tyler Smallwood
              Vickie Bennett
              Damon Salvatore

              My opinion
              I didn't know what to expect when I started this book as I missed the TV series and was so in awe of the true blood books that I thought that nothing would meet my expectations. The book starts off with an extract from Elena's diary and there are other extracts throughout the book which helps to break up the main story a bit and makes up understand Elena more. I found it gave me more of an insight into Elena's character. At the beginning I found that this story was too much like Twilight and wasn't overly impressed but I carried on anyway. The story is well written and has good descriptions. I could almost feel Stefan's hunger at points in the book. The characters are believable but I did wish that Matt would get a spine and stand up for himself which annoyed me. It was nice to see the popular girl at school brought down a peg or two at the beginning.

              The book to me is written for teenagers so it is an easy read but not a patch on the Sookie or Carpathian series (they are aimed at an older market though). I was a bit confused by what was happening at the beginning of the book (where were Elena's parents for example) but this was all made clear throughout the story. The book flicks between Elena's diary, modern day and Stefan's memories of the past but all the parts flow well together. Once I had got about half way through the book, I did find it hard to put down and I finally finished it by staying up to 1am as I wanted to know what happened next. I was very tempted to start the second book there and then but an early start in the morning prevented it. Roll on the Struggle.

              The Struggle

              Elena confronts Damon about what he has done to Stefan. Damon wants her but is that just so he can hurt his brother once again? He is much more powerful than Stefan and is the evil to Stefan's goodness. He swears that before winter comes he will have turned her. Elena and her friends find and rescue Stefan but he still feels he shouldn't be around humans and blames himself for the tragedies in the last book, even though he didn't do them.

              Alaric Saltzman, a new teacher at the school takes over Mr Tanner's place as European History teacher. He invites Elena's class to a party at his house that night. Damon appears at the party and then seems to be everywhere that Elena goes. Someone steals Elena's diary and keeps leaving extracts of it around the school. Who is causing all the trouble and will Damon finally claim his prize?

              Characters
              Elena Gilbert
              Damon Salvatore
              Bonnie
              Meredith
              Aunt Judith
              Robert
              Matt Honeycutt
              Margaret
              Caroline
              Tyler Smallwood
              Alaric Saltzman

              My opinion
              This book carries on exactly where the last book left off. It was just like going from one chapter to the next. This book is really well written again and I was willing Elena and her friends to find Stefan and quickly. The emotions of the characters really came out in the way the story was written. Something didn't seem right about Alaric from the time that the reader first meets him. I really began to hate Damon through this book as he was so manipulative of Elena and knew exactly what buttons to press to get a reaction.

              I found this book really hard to put down and it kept me engrossed all the way through. This story is a lot more action packed than the first one which was really setting the scene. The smaller characters from the first book such as Caroline and Tyler get more of an airing so you get to learn more about them which was nice. The book flicks again between the story and Elena's diary but again they roll seamlessly into each other. I liked the portrayal of Bonnie's psychic moments and Meredith's dry sense of humour. The book ends with a cliff hanger and leaves you desperate for the next instalment. It is a really good read and I enjoyed it.

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                26.04.2010 11:57

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                There is no shortage of excitement.

                This is a reissue of the first two 'Vampire Diaries' stories. These stories, however, date back to the early nineties. The Awakening finished with a cliff hanger ending and The Struggle starts from exactly where that first story left off. As a result The Awakening and The Struggle feel more like one long story rather than two separate novels. For this reason readers will need to read The Vampire Diaries in series order. There is the now familiar tale of an American high school teen falling deeply in love with a gorgeous but self hating vampire who hates the monster he is. He is always afraid that while he lives among humans, he poses a real threat to their safety. The Twilight comparisons end here as Elena and Stefan have a bigger battle on their hands than teen love. People in their town start dying and they must work out if vampires are behind the attacks or something much more evil. The plot of The Struggle is action driven. The cliff hanger ending guarantees that there will be no shortage of readers seeking out The Fury, the next book in The Vampire Diaries series.

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