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In "The Craving", the third novel in the Stefan's Diaries Series by L.J. Smith, vampire Stefan Salvatore has decided to go undercover and live a normal life among humans in Manhattan. Little does he know that his brother Damon is following him, wanting to reunite and continue their lives as reckless killers together again.
What intrigued me: I'm a fan of the tv show and love Stefan Salvatore, so I couldn't say no to a book that's only about his backstory.
The entire Stefan’s Diaries series are the prequel novels to the TV Show The Vampire Diaries. They are not prequels to the novels due to the changes they made in the show. They all tell events before the first episode as if they were taken directly from Stefan’s diary. In this one, Stefan travels to New York and gets taken in by a rich family after saving their daughter.
It's not the same as the show
The original series are now 9+ novels I believe and therefore the characters are all developed perfectly. The voices match the tone of the characters and their age - at least those that don’t have their debuts in this novel. The side characters Lydia, Bridget and Margaret are all thrown around like plot devices, so the reader is quite indifferent to their fate. Still, if you love the show or the original novels, this series portrays them perfectly, the characterizations are spot on.
Even though Stefan speaks/writes in his diary just like I would expect a 19th-century-teenager to write, it didn’t quite impress me. There’s something about the writing that kind of bores me - whenever there is no action, I tended to zone out inbetween paragraphs. The descriptions are very basic and clear - even too basic, but I guess that’s just personal preference. It's obviously a read intended for a wide range of audience and you can tell that it's written by a ghostwriter. There are no risks taken in the writing style and the plot line is textbook-clean. Introduction, story, dramatic twist, relief, villain introduction, confrontation.
I can’t believe that this plot filled almost 300 pages. Everything is rushed and the main plot can be summarized in a few sentences. The novel seems to be rather focusing on the brothers bickering than the actual plot lines. Well, singular form: there’s only one plot line. Also, introducing über-villains in the last 20 pages is never a good idea. Nevertheless, I finished this novel ridiculously fast and I liked it. I'm so hopelessly in love with Stefan and Damon as characters, that I didn't even mind that the plot is, if even at all, averagely boring. It's slightly predictable if you've read other Vampire Diaries novels as well.
Overall: Do I Recommend?
I had a hard time categorizing the novels. They are said to be prequels to the show, but eye colours and some details are just plain wrong. Stefan doesn’t have blue eyes and neither does Damon have dark brown ones, I think it’s that way in the novels though. But then again the figure of Katherine is definitely the one from the show. A bit consistency please.
However, I couldn’t walk past this novel and I’d probably reread it in the future even though there is no plot and no new groundbreaking information. Therefore I must say that for everyone that loves the show as much as I do and fell in love with the characters, this is a nice read. Still it remains nothing but a mediocre fan fiction in the end, I have read better stuff among the fan writings.
Author: L.J. Smith
Published: March 3rd 2011
Genre: YA / Paranormal / Vampires
"After his brother, Damon Salvatore, betrays him in New Orleans, Stefan starts over in Manhattan. Vowing never to harm another human, he roams the streets, trying to disappear into the city’s chaos. But just when he thinks he’s left his past behind, Stefan discovers that he can never escape his brother.Damon has grand plans for the vampire Salvatore brothers—whether Stefan likes it or not. Together, they take New York by storm. When their exploits end up on the society pages, an old enemy resurfaces—one hell-bent on revenge.
Based on the popular CW TV show inspired by the bestselling novels, Stefan’s Diaries reveals the truth about what really happened between Stefan, Damon, and Katherine—and how the Vampire Diaries love triangle began. "(Source: Goodreads)
Do you watch The Vampire Diaries?
Do you watch The Vampire Diaries?