Tuesday, 24 April 2012

Between The Lines by Jodi Picoult and Samantha Van Leer

Samantha Van Leer is Jodi Picoult's daughter, and the idea for Between The Lines came from her.  Jodi and Samantha developed the idea together, and have written the story jointly.  

It will be published in the UK on 5 July 2012 by Hodder and Stoughton.

I'm a massive fan of Jodi Picoult's novels, devouring each one as they are published.  I also read quite a lot of Young Adult fiction and was intrigued by the idea of this novel.

Between The Lines is a very clever concept - a story within a story.   Delilah is a modern-day American teenager, she's a bit awkward, she doesn't hang out with the cool crowd and she is obsessed with Oliver.
Oliver is no ordinary boy, he's a character in a children's fairy story.

 He's just a line drawing, a figment of an author's imagination, but he is Delilah's dream man.  She knows the story by heart, she knows every line and every illustration ..... until one day she notices that one of the pictures has changed ...... and then Oliver speaks to her!

Combining fairy story with a modern coming-of-age tale this really is a very clever and unique novel. Yes, it is magic, but it also deals with real issues, those faced by teenage girls all over the world.

Jodi Picoult's writing style is at the forefront throughout the story, peppered along the way with some real humour that at times is almost tongue-in-cheek.

Oliver is desperate to get out of the fairy tale and Delilah is desperate for a friend.  The fast paced plot follows their attempts to be together.   Delilah has to deal with her Mother's increasing worries about her, how can she prove that she doesn't need to see a shrink, even though she's been caught talking to a book?

Between The Lines is great fun and an ideal way for younger readers to sample Jodi Picoult's writing style.  Samantha Van Leer has inherited her Mother's talent and I'm positive that this is the start of a very successful writing career for her.  Her imagination combined with her humour are an ideal mix.

Suspend all disbelief and enjoy this story for what it is, a magical fairy story with a cast of real-life characters.


  1. Jodi talked about this very briefly on tour, sounds great Anne. Thanks for reviewing

    lainy www.alwaysreading.net

  2. It's already on the wish list - I'm also a massive fan and think this will be a brilliant read.

  3. How unusual and unique this sounds

  4. However good the authors, there is no such thing as joint writing.