Title: The Vampire Diaries: The Struggle.
Author: L. J. Smith.
Genre: Fiction, YA, teen, fantasy, romance, vampire fiction.
Publication Date: 1991.
Summary: Life is getting complicated for Stefan and Elena. Though they're as close as ever, Damon, Stefan's evil brother, is now in the picture, and he will stop at nothing to possess Elena. Stefan is weak after barely getting out alive from the brothers' last fight, and the town of Fell's Church would love to pin him with the brutal murders that have been plaguing the town. Elena, too concerned for Stefan's well-being, conceals her run-ins with and inexplicable attraction to Damon, and the mysterious person who is black-mailing her and threatening Stefan's safety, but her secrecy and isolation may turn out to be a deadly decision.
My rating: 8/10.
♥ "I'm not trained; it's not something I can control. And—and it's not a game, not anymore. The more you use the powers, the more they use you. Eventually they can end up using you all the time, whether you want it or not. It's dangerous."
♥ She moved through the crowd with deliberate insolence, holding any eye she accidentally caught. I'm already notorious, she thought. I might as well be brazen, too.
♥ "You took me across the bridge. You can cross running water."
"That's because I'm weak." It was said flatly, with no emotion behind it. "It's ironic, but the stronger your Powers are, the more you're affected by certain limitations. The more you belong to the dark, the more the rules of the dark bind you."
♥ "Ah... Stefan," she added n a changed tone as a new thought struck her, "what about mirrors? I don't remember ever seeing you in one."
For a moment, he didn't answer. Then he said, "Legend has it that mirrors reflect the soul of the person who looks into them. That's why primitive people are afraid of mirrors; they're afraid that their souls will be trapped and stolen. My kind is supposed to have no reflection—because we have no souls." Slowly, he reached up to the rearview mirror and tilted it downward, adjusting it so that Elena could look into it. In the silvered glass, she saw his eyes, lost, haunted, and infinitely sad.
There was nothing to do but hold on to him, and Elena did. "I love you," she whispered. It was the only comfort she could give him. It was all they had.
His arms tightened around her; his face was buried in her hair. "You're the mirror," he whispered back.
♥ Without actually looking at Matt, Stefan smiled. There was something new stirring inside him, something he hadn't felt for nearly five centuries, except with Elena. Acceptance. Warmth and friendship shared with a fellow being, who did not know the truth about him but who trusted him anyway. Who was willing to take him on faith. He wasn't sure he deserved it, but he couldn't deny what it meant to him. It almost made him feel... human again.
♥ As Aunt Judith arrived and the meal began Elena looked up and down the table. A bright haze seemed to lie over everything, and she had a feeling of unreality, but the scene itself looked almost unbelievably wholesome, like something out of a commercial. Just your average family sitting down to eat turkey, she thought. One slightly flustered maiden aunt, worried that the peas will be mushy and the rolls burnt, one comfortable uncle-to-be, one golden-haired teenage niece and her tow-headed baby sister. One blue-eyed boy-next-door type, one spritely girlfriend, one gorgeous vampire passing the candied yams. A typical American household.