Jessica's books

The One and Only Ivan
Revolutionary War on Wednesday
Leprechaun in Late Winter
Ella Enchanted
The Courage of Sarah Noble
Plain Murder
Gone-Away Lake
Circling the Sun
Maggie and Max
The Haunting of Sunshine Girl
The Night Sister
Tuck Everlasting
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
Bedknob and Broomstick
Mister Monday
Alice Through the Looking Glass
The Birchbark House
The Hobbit
The Witch's Daughter

Jessica's favorite books »

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Book Review: Between by Jessica Warman


Synopsis (from Goodreads):  Elizabeth Valchar--pretty, popular, and rich--wakes up the morning after her eighteenth birthday on the yacht where she'd been celebrating with her closest friends. A persistent thumping noise has roused her. When she goes to investigate, she finds her own drowned body is hitting the side of the boat. Liz is dead.

She has no memory of what happened to her, and can only observe in horror the fallout of her death. She's also soon joined by Alex Berg, a quiet boy from her high school who was killed by a hit-and-run driver. The two keep each other company, floating in and out of memories and trying to piece together the details of what happened to each of them.

In her regular life, Liz was a runner. It wasn't abnormal for her to run 8-10 miles per day. But as memories from closer to her death begin to surface, Liz finds that she'd been running much more than normal, and that she'd all but stopped eating. Liz's mother, who died when Liz was nine, had battled with anorexia as well, and those around her worried Liz was following in her mother's footsteps. But something more sinister was consuming Liz from the inside out. . . .

From critically acclaimed author Jessica Warman comes a shocking mystery, a heartbreaking character study, and ultimately a hopeful tale of redemption, love, and letting go.

My Thoughts:  This was a perfect book to read around Halloween.  Not that it was scary but it was an amazing mystery that had me hooked from page one!

Liz has it all...or so it seems.  She's beautiful, popular and rich.  What more could you ask for huh?  Unfortunately for Liz, these things don't keep her alive past her 18th birthday.  Liz wakes up on her family's boat the night of her 18th birthday and is annoyed by the continuous thumping on the side of the boat.  She goes out to investigate only to discover it's her own dead body! 

From there Liz is kept company by Alex who has died his own mysterious death.  Neither of them know why they are paired together since they have nothing in common (she's rich and popular, he's middle-class and a little nerdy) but they have the feeling that they must find out.  As Liz takes a look back at her life and realizes that it wasn't perfect and neither was she, she is able to slowly piece together the mystery behind Alex's death and her own. 

I had this book figured out about half way through for the most part but there were still some things that kept me guessing until the end.  Even though I had it figured out, it still had me completely enthralled through the whole book!  I loved how the book went back and forth between present and past.  It was not confusing at all!

Liz was a character that you loved to hate.  She was selfish, conceited and mean.  Her group of friends were superficial and flaky.  Throughout the book though, you find that you are connecting with Liz and you see how she grows and changes.  I connected with both Liz and her mother as I have suffered from anorexia.  I understand the need to control the one and only thing you think you can control.  I felt Liz's pain and stress and she fought both with starvation and running.

I loved Alex too.  He didn't hold a grudge and the scene at Homecoming (won't say anymore about it) was so sweet!  I liked how Alex and Liz worked through their relationship and ended up connecting and I really liked how Alex deals with what he already knows.  He lets Liz figure out what she needs to figure out on her own while being there to support her and guide her through it. 

This book was long...454 pages but totally worth it!  You won't even notice how many pages are in it as it was so gripping.  I highly recommend this one!

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