Why is it that the sophomore book in a series usually falls flat compared to the first book? I was eagerly looking forward to the second book, and I was quite disappointed in it.
In The Struggle, Elena rages at the sly, cruel Damon for bringing despair into his brother, Stefan’s life. She searches for Stefan and finds him nearly half-dead, and gives him some of her own blood to revive him. Damon pursues Elena with a vengeance, wanting to steal her from Stefan. Meanwhile, Elena’s high-school nemesis Caroline is also up to something sinister.
As I said, I was really disappointed in this book. For one, the writing is kind of juvenile and unpolished; it’s as if the book was written in a terrible hurry. Also, I developed a hearty dislike for Elena. I find many similarities between her and Bella, and you know how much I dislike Bella. The strength and spunk Elena showed in the first book seems to be missing, and all she is capable of is crying or making empty threats to Damon (seriously, how does she expect to make him “pay for what he has done”?) Stefan doesn’t really have much to do, and I felt that Damon’s evil nature could have been explored some more; I couldn’t really fit Ian Somerhalder’s calculating Damon from the TV series with the book’s slightly insipid one. The book feels like a rickety bridge between the first and third books, with not much of a strong story, and a little too much of whiny love. It ends on a cliffhanger as well, and I really hope that the third book turns out to be better.