Between the Lines

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2.3
 
3.2 (3)
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Between the Lines
Publisher
Age Range
12+
Release Date
June 26, 2012
ISBN
978-1451635751
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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.

Editor reviews

1 reviews

Book Comes to Life
(Updated: June 25, 2012)
Overall rating 
 
2.3
Plot 
 
2.0
Characters 
 
2.0
Writing Style 
 
3.0
Delilah hates school because it's boring and the people are mean. When she finds an old fairy tale book with hand painted pictures, she becomes enamored of the story and the main character, Prince Oliver. She starts to notice that small things in the pictures have changed, and it turns out that this is because the characters in the book have completely different lives when the book is closed and they are not acting out the story. This story is told from three different perspectives, written in three different fonts-- Delilah's view, Oliver's view, and the text of the story, Between the Lines. Oliver chafes at being in the book and desperately wants to escape, especially after seeking Delilah's help and falling in love with her. Will the two be able to figure a way to be together?


Good Points
This was a nice idea. Ms. Picoult and her daughter no doubt had a very enjoyable time writing this. It's not as confusing as many books with three points of view, and was a quick read.
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User reviews

3 reviews

Overall rating 
 
3.2
Plot 
 
2.3  (3)
Characters 
 
3.3  (3)
Writing Style 
 
4.0  (2)
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Light fantasy from dual perspective. Not your average Picoult novel.
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot 
 
3.0
Characters 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
N/A
The first bit didn't suck me on the way I wanted it to. But once it got to Delilah's chapter, I liked her and her voice, and I was sold. I connected with her on a personal level with her being on the outside of social circles as well as the broken family vibe and of course being an avid reader, and that she does it for escape.
I often wish I could be a part of my stories and I have to admit that I have imagined what happens to my characters when I am not reading but it is usually life after the story, not the fact that the characters have separate lives and personalities once the book is closed, and the fact that they live the story over and over with each new reader.
I love how the dual narrative was done, mixing the fantasy with Delilah's more contemporary setting. It took me a bit to appreciate the actual fairy tale mixed in with Delilah and Oliver's chapters, because I preferred the real time and the voices and character that Delilah and Oliver brought to the story, their narrative and feeling instead of being twice removed with the fairy tale.
I also appreciate that it was written by mother and daughter and there are strong family ties in the book as well.
I liked the twist at the end and how it all played out. I didn't see that coming, and the ways that I kept thinking of to get Oliver out of the story didn't work out, but I never really thought about how they wrapped it up.
Bottom line: Light fantasy from dual perspective. Not your average Picoult novel.
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Cute, but not for me
Overall rating 
 
3.3
Plot 
 
2.0
Characters 
 
3.0
Writing Style 
 
5.0
Between the Lines is a story, part contemporary, part fairytale, about a girl, who starts loving a character the way that the rest of us reader would start obsessing over, say, Noah of The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer, or whether we were Team Zachary or Team Logan from the Shade trilogy. Turns out, that particular character can communicate with her, and wants to get out of the story and into the real world.

The only book I've read by Jodi Picoult is My Sister's Keeper, and only at the insistence of a very close friend. While that book made me cry, laugh, and cheer on every one of the characters, I didn't go hunt down the rest of her books to satisfy my cravings for some odd reason that might include me being an idiot. And suddenly, one day I find this and decide, "Hey, why not?" To be honest, I was expecting the sort of book that'd wrench my guts out like My Sister's Keeper did, but this book wasn't like that. It was bubbly, sweet, and though a very enjoyable book, it didn't pack the punch I thought it would.

Between the Lines proposed a very interesting concept. Book characters are basically actors who have a life outside the storyline. It kind of made me rethink things, like "What if President Snow is actually an anti-child abuse advocate?" or "Imagine if Voldemort actually works as a baker who likes making tarts and cookies for the Hogwarts students." Thumbs up for creativity.

The story is told from three different viewpoints. Delilah, Oliver, and the Between the Lines story Delilah loves so much. Their voices were all very well written; Delilah with her teenage girl feel, Oliver with that guy but slightly old-school voice, and the fairytale style of the storybook. The formatting of the story is quite interesting. Since the story rotates with the three different PoVs, it starts with a hand-drawn scene from the storybook that's beautifully drawn, and with Delilah and Oliver's chapters in different fonts and colours, and even more little images to go along. It made reading it . . . fun. In this strange way. Like you're reading a picture book for teenagers.

The plot was quite straightforward, so I didn't get confused even with the alternating PoVs. The problem laid with the ending. The book suddenly introduced Edgar, who turned out to be this huge game-changer, in only the last fifty pages. The way the conflict ended was quite interesting, and while I thought it was really cool, the story closed on a fairly odd note. While the storyline wasn't bad, I felt like there could've been more of Delilah and her life, including more with her relationship with her mother, in the place of her chatting with Oliver through the book.

How the setting was injected into the story was fantastic. The settings itself was already not just real in Delilah's world, but also with the fairytale charm of Oliver's. Descriptions of it were placed subtly throughout the chapters, and while showed you their surroundings, it didn't overwhelm you and take away from the story itself.

Delilah is a tomboy. And not afraid to tell Oliver off, even though she is a bit obsessed with him. She's easy to imagine as a person in real life. What I didn't like about her was how she dropped everything in her life to be with something that could've been only a figment of her imagination. She started to ignore her BFF, Jules, who forgave her a little bit too quickly, her mother, and her life in general for a few more moments with Oliver's story.

Oliver himself is like the poster boy for prince, or at the very least, gentleman. He's handsome, courteous, kind etc. But he's also a bit selfish. In the end, he did apologize profusely for not thinking about his actions before doing that. Another thing I was a bit bothered by was his relationship with Seraphima. Because in the fairytale Seraphima's hopelessly in love with Oliver, she believes she has to be like that out of the story. But you can clearly see how she's not in love with Oliver, but instead her idea of living the fairytale. And Oliver, feeling sorry for her, doesn't break up with her straight out. Doesn't that sound familiar? That's really just a ticking time bomb waiting for Delilah to come along and blow it up.

While there were quite a lot of things I had problems with in the book, I still enjoyed it very much, so you wouldn't see me giving a two-star to this one. It's classified as a YA novel, but I would have no problem recommending it to a middle-grade reader, since it's a very clean and light read. No heavy topics or lusty scenes here. I'd recommend it to someone looking for something casual contemporary.
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fairytales and true love rolled into one modern story
Overall rating 
 
2.3
Plot 
 
2.0
Characters 
 
2.0
Writing Style 
 
3.0
Between The Lines was written the perspective of Oliver, Delilah, and the Narrator. The characters’ were typical and felt like they were just words on paper, nothing they did made them come alive to me. I loved the idea for this story because it’s different and I was instantly interested in what it was about and about Oliver’s fate. The writing for this story annoyed me for some reason and there were a few words used in the wrong sense.
Good Points
Like I said before, the idea for this story is amazing and I loved it. Three stories wrapped up into one bigger story is great and usually exciting. I liked that the authors put the name of which character/narrator we were reading at the top of the page. My favourite parts of this book were the obstacles and challenges that Oliver and Delilah had to go through to find the right way to get Oliver out of the book.
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