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

Between the Lines
Authors: Jodi Picoult & Samantha Van Leer
Reading Level: Young Adult
Genre: Fantasy | Fairy Tales | Romance
Release Date: June 26th 2012
Review Source: Simon Pulse

Summary: (from goodreads) 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.

As a huge fan of Jodi Picoult, I dove into Between the Lines already expecting to thoroughly enjoy it. The idea for this novel was conceived by her teenage daughter and teaming up, they created a magical story together.

Delilah McPhee is a fifteen year old loner who comes across a fairy tale in her school’s library. She immediately feels a connection to the story because Prince Oliver and Delilah have both lost their fathers. However, within the fairy tale, Prince Oliver has become just as intrigued with Delilah. He decides he will try to speak with her and, to his surprise, she hears him! At first, she is determined that she is hallucinating or going insane. She takes the book everywhere with her, reads and rereads it, to the point where her mother thinks she needs to see a psychiatrist.

Slowly, Delilah and Prince Oliver get to know each other. They share their deepest wishes and secrets. He tells her how hard it is to be part of a story and live out the same life over and over. Each time the book is cracked open, the characters must all take their places and play out a story that ends the same every time. He must marry the princess and live happily ever after, even though he’s not even attracted to her. All Oliver can think of is how to escape the story and live a life where he can make his own decisions. He and Delilah start brainstorming and the outcome of these attempts vary from funny to heart-wrenching.

Several of the chapters are straight from the fairy tale, Between the Lines, that Delilah is reading. Those chapters give you some insight to the fairy tale itself and allow you to get to know the other characters, Oliver’s friends. You’ll meet fairies, mermaids, pirates and trolls, but discover they lead a very different life when the book is closed. You will also find several illustrations scattered throughout the novel, which I found very cute. They added a lot to the imagery of the story.

I loved the book and all of its characters. Jodi Picoult did a beautiful job of bringing her daughter’s ideas to us in these pages. Although it’s not her usual genre, she is a master at wrapping the reader up in her stories. I’d recommend it to anyone who believes “Everyone Deserves A Happy Ending”.


  1. How did you get an advance copy of this book?! So jealous!

    I heard about it a while ago and totally can't wait to read it! Thanks for the review!

  2. Sounds positively adorable! It's nice to know that there are snippets from the book itself, AND ILLUSTRATIONS! Glad you liked it. :)


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