Saturday, May 30, 2015

Review: Between the Lines by Jodi Picoult and Samantha van Leer (Audio book)

I did something I haven't done in a long time.  I listened to an audio book.  Thanks to Audible's free 30 day trial and Goodreads, I got two free downloads.  I decided to go ahead and use it as I was driving to Branson last weekend for my family vacation.  That's about a four to four and a half hour drive.  My CD player in my car no longer works.  I had satellite radio free for a week, but I get bored with the channels they let me use for free.  And, I'd been tired of using the music in my iTunes as I'd been doing that since my CD player first gave out.  So I decided to listen to a book, and when I picked my free books, this was one I picked because I'd wanted to read it ever since a student recommended it to me several years ago. And I liked that it had more than one person as the reader, having a couple characters that had their own reader.  I enjoyed the first book so much that I returned the other book I downloaded, and used my other free credit to download the sequel that just recently came out, and I'm currently listening to that in my car right now.

This is a book about characters in a book coming to life.  What they do when the book is closed.  You see, to the characters, the story itself is like a play they have to put on every time someone opens the book. But when the book is closed they have kind of their own lives. They're only able to do things that are there in the book, but they can be who they want to be within those parameters.  Also, the villain isn't really a villain, families aren't really families, and animals can talk.  Normally the readers don't ever see this as the characters rush to be in their places and do only what the story and pictures show them to do.  But in this book, one reader has noticed a change or two.  Her name is Delilah, and she is a girl in high school who found the book on a shelf, and decided to check it out.  She has kind of felt a connection with the main character in the book, Prince Oliver, even though it is a fairy tale picture book for younger readers.  The connection?  Well her father left her and her mother when she was younger.  Prince Oliver never knew his father because he died out trying to kill a dragon to save the kingdom on the day Oliver was born. 

Oliver isn't happy inside the book, he wants to do other things, wants to see what else there is in the world outside the book.  And he even really notices this new reader, thinks she is beautiful when she opens the book and sees her eyes and face.  He likes to play games in the sand with his best friend, Frump, who is a dog.  But we know that Frump used to be a boy around the age of the Prince before an evil spell turned him into a dog.  One day when they called to go to their places, Oliver doesn't get the game board scratched out of the sand, and Delilah notices it as something changed in the picture in the book.  And from there they just seem to figure out how to talk to each other and now Delilah wants to find a way to help Oliver. But talking to the book gets noticed by her mother and soon she had to prove she's not crazy.  And getting Oliver out of the book isn't going to be quite as easy as they'd  hoped. 

This book was a fun read.  There were parts as I listened that I chuckled at, and I'm sure I would have enjoyed it as I was reading it as well. So far I'm enjoying the second book on audio as well, although I think the voice of the Prince has changed, even though I thought it said it was the same reader.  I highly recommend either listening or reading this series if you haven't started yet.  It is my first venture into the world of Jodi Picoult books, and it probably won't lead to me picking up her other solo author books, but I am glad I chose to listen to this one.