In ORIGINS, we get to find out how it all began and how Stefan and Damon met and fell in love with Katherine.
These books are the prequels to the TV show and are written by a ghostwriter. They stand in no relation to the book series by L.J. Smith.
If you're a fan of the original books, this will definitely confuse you. If you're a fan of the show and want to find out how it all began, be my guest.
I'm a sucker for the TV show and it's not a secret. So naturally I jumped at an opportunity to find out the origin story of the Salvatore brothers and Katherine. Because all these books are written by a ghostwriter, the writing is very, basic, clean and absolutely not unique. It feels generic. The characterization of Stefan isn't really something I'd agree with as a fan of the show.
I've read the third novel before I read this one and as both a human and a vampire, Stefan acts like a little boy. There's nothing left of the charming gentleman of the first season, he's just an insecure kid. For a seventeen-year-old he's very immature and naive. I get that this probably the point - to show a side of Stefan that the fans of the show not know, but I just couldn't empathize with his character, because he's so unlike the Stefan that I know.
A Novelization of the Show
The relationship between Katherine and him is extremely off as well. Through the show you've got the impression that it was epic head-over-heels love between the two and they really thought they were meant for each other at the time. In ORIGINS, Stefan falls in love with her madly from the second he sees her and it's absolutely ridiculous. He's supposed to marry some other girl and is conflicted because he fell in love with Katherine after talking two sentences. Unbelievable. I didn't buy it and it really made me dislike him irrationally. Katherine isn't even portrayed charmingly. She's barely in the novel and Stefan characterizes her passively, which just leads to unrealistic expectations. More show, less tell.
I can just overall say that I was insanely bored with this and had to force myself to keep going. Stefan proves to be a super boring and almost sleepy character to read about. No doubt, had this been the first Stefan's Diaries book that I'd read, I wouldn't have even bothered to pick up the sequels. I think the main flaw of this is that they really tried to incorporate all the flashback scenes and dialogue from the show in too little time. Literally every scene we've seen with Katherine/Damon/Stefan in 1864 is in this novel and it happens in a ridiculously short time span. It's not realistic, it's just boring. I can't find any better adjective to describe it.
Overall: Do I Recommend?
I'm not a fan. I liked the third novel way better and even that one was a pretty mediocre read. I'm probably still going to continue reading these novels to find out more backstory to the show, because I'm really interested in the characters. The books on their own aren't worth reading if you're not a hardcore Vampire Diaries fan.
Genre: YA / Paranormal / Vampires
"A love triangle that will span eternity…
The year is 1864 and the Civil War rages on. But seventeen-year-old Stefan Salvatore is fighting a battle all his own. Engaged to marry someone he does not love, Stefan falls for a mysterious girl named Katherine. With her gleaming curls and mischievous brown eyes, Katherine is beautiful and seduction…but she also harbors a dark secret: She’s a vampire.
Based on the popular CW TV show inspired by the bestselling novels, Stefan’s Diaries reveals what really happened between Stefan, Damon, and Katherine—and how the Vampire Diaries love triangle began."