Book: Between the Lines
Author: Samantha van Leer, Jodi Picoult
Publisher and Publication Date: Simon Pulse Simon Schuster, 06/26/12
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Romance
My Review in a Nutshell:
This is not Jodi Picoults’ writing, this is very obviously her daughter, and Jodi just tacked her name on the cover to gain attention to it. So, if you’re expecting to ugly cry, like most Jodi Picoult books do to me, look elsewhere. I could spend oodles of time picking out flaws, but I will not do that, it is not nice.
What’s It All About?
Delilah is a loner in high school. Her time is mostly spent reading a fairytale book, over and over again. The book is her safe place, she feels an undeniable connection, maybe even romantic, with the main character, a prince. Then one day, the prince actually speaks to her! Apparently, when you close a book, the story doesn’t stop. The characters have lives of their own within the pages. Delilah desperately wants to help the prince escape from the book, and she is his only hope.
The summary is deceiving, using words like charming, fairytale and fantastical. I am a 27 year old female with a not so unusual obsession with Disney Princesses and fairy tales. I thought I struck gold with this one; not only did it sound whimsical, it is also YA. I did not get that vibe while reading. At all. No whimsy here.
I say this as constructive criticism, hopefully it will be taken that way, at least. The plot was poorly executed, cliché in every retrospect, and everything was spelt out for the reader to the point where a three year old could’ve guessed it all in a New York minute. Zero depth.
My advice to Samantha van Leer? Grow a little as a writer, gain some experience. You have an amazing mentor in your own home, utilize it. Come back to this book and REWRITE it. I would give it a second chance. The idea of it all is special and unique, there is definitely something there, just not yet.