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Monday, 25 June 2012

Review: Between the Lines by Jodi Picoult & Samantha Van Leer

Author: Jodi Picoult & Samantha Van Leer
Published: Emily Bestler Books/Atria/Simon Pulse
Page Count: 358 pages, Hardcover
Date Published: June 26th 2012
Find it on Goodreads: Between the Lines
Source: ARC courtesy of Simon & Schuster Canada

New York Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult and her teenage daughter present their first-ever novel for teens, filled with romance, adventure, and humor.What happens when happily ever after…isn’t?     Delilah is a bit of a loner who prefers spending her time in the school library with her head in a book—one book in particular. Between the Lines may be a fairy tale, but it feels real. Prince Oliver is brave, adventurous, and loving. He really speaks to Delilah.     And then one day Oliver actually speaks to her. Turns out, Oliver is more than a one-dimensional storybook prince. He’s a restless teen who feels trapped by his literary existence and hates that his entire life is predetermined. He’s sure there’s more for him out there in the real world, and Delilah might just be his key to freedom. Delilah and Oliver work together to attempt to get Oliver out of his book, a challenging task that forces them to examine their perceptions of fate, the world, and their places in it. And as their attraction to each other grows along the way, a romance blossoms that is anything but a fairy tale.

My Thoughts: I think the idea of this book is great, but could have been executed differently to make it more enjoyable to a large audience.

I had a really difficult time getting into this book. The story was great, but it wasn't easy adjusting to all the different fonts and point of views. The story is told from three different perspectives: Oliver's view, Delilah's view, and then we have the actual fairy tale, Between the Lines. And each POV is written in a different font. Which is really, quite annoying, to be blunt. I know that really doesn't matter in the long run, but... well... it kind of irked me. The illustrations are excellent, though. I'm really excited to see them in color; They truly add so much to the book. If you're into fairy tales, as I am, I'm sure you'll enjoy this book. It's filled with everything a great fairy tale should have, but so much more, too. It has many moments where I just sat there and sighed happily, because it was so cute and fluffy. That's exactly what this book is. Cute and fluffy. All of the characters are extremely likeable. Delilah, the girl who is in the 'real world' was easy to relate to, with the fact that she's an outcast who escapes within her books. Yeah, that I can relate to... A lot. I also really liked Oliver. He was cute and complex, with such a need to escape his continuously repetitive life. Can you imagine having to act out the same story you entire life, on the command of someone else? Although I liked the two protagonists, I really loved the other supporting characters! Frump and Socks were so adorable!

As much as I may have liked the characters and the concept of this book, it still wasn't all that I wished it to be. I believe this has been said multiple times now, but I think this book would be better suited for girls ages 11-13. It has simple, juvenile language and it lacks a certain aspect that YA should have. If I had read this book back when I was in middle school, I'm sure I would have loved it. But reading it at this age has me not loving it, but not hating it. There were some holes in the story that could probably be overlooked by others, but I like to think that I'm a fairly experienced reader and so, I notice these things. Also, I'm not that big of a Jodi Picoult fan. I've just never gotten into her books. I think her daughter will grow to be a great writer, if that's what she plans to do, but I feel that she needs to try stepping away from her mother's usual style of writing, even if this book wasn't in Picoult's usual genre.

Once again, this is a book that is great if you're looking for something that doesn't make you think too much. A book that will make you say "aww," and  reminisce about all those dreamy book characters you've fallen in love with. (Admit it, there's got to have been at least one!) It's always been a dream of mine to be able to speak directly to the characters in the books I read, so I openly envy Delilah. I'm sure a lot of readers can relate. Between the Lines was a great book to be released at the beginning of summer. It will please those who need a quick read for the beach. But if you're hoping for something that is darker and less Disney-esque, this isn't the book for you.

Happy reading!

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