Reader Reviewed Between the Lines by Samantha Van Leer, Jodi Picoult

Between the Lines

Written by Samantha Van Leer, Jodi Picoult

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The Lovereading4Kids comment

Now out in paperback, bestselling Jodi Picoult, co-writing with her daughter who came up with the idea, tells a brilliantly romantic story of love across a divide in this entertaining and also thought-provoking story about stories, characters and readers. The ‘divide’ is a wonderfully inventive one in this witty ‘what if?’ story. Bookish and unusual Delilah falls headlong into a ‘Once upon a time’ fairy story full of princes and princesses, dragons and evil trickery. There’s nothing so strange about that except that Delilah is a teenager who stopped believing in ‘happy ever after’ years ago. What she doesn’t know is that Oliver, the handsome prince of the story, has noticed the pale blobs who watch him when the book opens. Who are they, he wonders? All he knows about them is that, when they are not there, he and the other characters rest and when they are, his story comes to life. Can Oliver and Delilah make contact and what will happen when they do? Funny, touching and clever, teens will love this unusual love story.

And some background on how this novel came about:

Two years ago, Jodi Picoult's then 14-year-old daughter, Samantha, phoned her during one of Jodi's tours and said 'I have an idea for a book ...' Now, having written every line together, in time snatched during school holidays, breaks between tours and evenings after homework…in both harmony (rushing with excitement to put the same words in sentences at the same time) and amiable discord (should the Prince be dark, or fairhaired?), Between the Lines is ready for publication. The illustrators, Yvonne Gilbert and Scott M Fischer, were carefully chosen and the appearance of the book carefully considered to make it a must-have possession. It was important to make it one the reader wanted to pick up and look at...'The book has the coolest illustrations and silhouettes that take my breath away' says Jodi.
Sammy says: 'Collaborating with another person may sound challenging - two minds and conflicting ideas - but the truth is writing the book was one of the best experiences I will ever have.'

Reader Reviews

Teens love to read and so in addition to our Lovereading expert opinion some of our Lovereading4kids Reader Review Panel were also lucky enough to read and review the sequel to this title, Off The Page prior to publication in paperback in April 2016. You can read their full reviews here.

  • Amy Laws, age 14 - 'So imaginative and creative - I loved Off The Page from beginning to end.'
  • Stacie Ball - 'Perfect for first time readers of Jodi Picoult, a sequel to Between The Lines or a standalone, Off The Page is sure to leave you smiling from ear to ear and full of happy feelings.'
  • Alex McCalla, age 15 - 'Both are such amazing writers. Couldn't get my head out of the book!'
  • Destiny Maraj, age 14 - 'an interesting and intriguing read with a fascinating and original storyline.'
  • Freya Tilsley, age 13 - 'It made me laugh, it made me cringe and turn the page. Overall a really imaginative, brilliant take on a fairy tale.'
  • Emma Hughes - 'I had finished this book within a day, it captures you into the magic of the story right from the first page. A very enjoyable read!'
  • Edel Waugh - 'This was a tearjerker, heart-breaker book filled with smiles and hope. I loved these characters so much, and especially a loyal little dog called Frump.'
  • Amelia White, age 16 - 'Amazing book, it's a story in a story about love and magic... A modern fairy tale!'
  • Delilah Acworth - 'Off The Page was a charming romantic tale, splattered with comedy and heartthrob.'
  • Izzy Read, age 15 - 'Off The Page is an exhilarating, comforting fairy tale that has crazy beautiful illustrations along with it.'


Between the Lines by Samantha Van Leer, Jodi Picoult

Delilah knows it's weird, but she can't stop reading her favourite fairy tale. Other girls her age are dating and cheerleading. But then, other girls are popular. She loves the comfort of the happy ending, and knowing there will be no surprises. Until she gets the biggest surprise of all, when Prince Oliver looks out from the page and speaks to her. Now Delilah must decide: will she do as Oliver asks, and help him to break out of the book? Or is this her chance to escape into happily ever after?

Read between the lines for total enchantment...


Prolific and bestselling author Picoult teams up with her teenage daughter to pen a clever YA romance -- Publishers Weekly

Unleash the child in you! She [Picoult] has teamed up with her daughter to write an adventure tale for teens, and it has plenty of action and romance to keep younger readers happy ... -- Heat

A brilliantly romantic story of love across a divide in this entertaining and also thought-provoking story about stories, characters and readers ... Funny, touching and clever, teens will love this unusual love story. --

In her first foray into teen fiction, Picoult and her co-author daughter deliver an enjoyable, metafictive twist on the traditional teen-romance novel ... Book lovers in particular are likely to get a kick out of the blurring of the lines between character and reader, fact and fiction ... Fizzy, fairy-tale fun -- Kirkus Reviews

A tween-age fantasy about a fairy tale that comes to life in its reader's hands -- Vogue

About the Author

Jodi Picoult grew up in Nesconset, New York. She received an A.B. in creative writing from Princeton and a master's degree in education from Harvard. Her previous novels include HOUSE RULES, NINETEEN MINUTES, and MY SISTER'S KEEPER. She lives in New Hampshire with her husband and three children.

Samantha Van Leer is sixteen years old. She writes, sings and acts, and lives in New Hampshire with her parents and two older brothers.

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Book Info


384 pages


Samantha Van Leer, Jodi Picoult
More books by Samantha Van Leer, Jodi Picoult

Author's Website


Hodder Paperback an imprint of Hodder & Stoughton General Division

Publication date

20th June 2013




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