Book review: "Off the Page" by Jodi Picoult & Samantha Van Leer

"Off the Page" featuring my half Bengal beauty: Treacle
"Off the Page" by Jodi Picoult and Samantha Van Leer

As an avid reader, the idea of a novel which centred around the theme of a book character coming to life and wishing to escape the pages in order to be with the reader was something I was intrigued by. Because let's be real, at one point back in seventh grade reading Twilight didn't we all wish Edward could be our boyfriend?! Because aren't book boyfriends always better than the real thing?!

"Off the Page" is the second novel of a YA duology by adult author Jodi Picoult and her daughter Samantha Van Leer. As someone who's read many of Picoult's novels - Picture Perfect and Keeping Faith, to name a few - I was excited to read her take on YA. As I previously mentioned, Off the Page is the second novel, with the first being Between the Lines. Both however, can be viewed as stand alones or as a duology.

Between the Lines follows 15 year old Delilah, a high school student in New Hampshire with an unnatural obsession with a fairy tale. This fairy tale tells the story of a prince - Oliver - who must survive a number of catastrophes such as being kidnapped by man hungry mermaids, in order to rescue the princess. Cliché right? Well Oliver thinks so too. Because when the book is closed the characters just carry on living their own lives, with no reference to their characters personalities at all. For example Oliver detests the princess he must rescue and takes comfort from the 'villain'. All in all when the book is opened, the characters are essentially acting out a storyline.
Until one day Oliver speaks to Delilah through the pages, explaining to her why he must get out of his monotonous existence. Delilah listens and the rest of the story is based on them thinking up a plan to get him into her world.

Of the two books, Between the lines was my least favourite, though saying that, I still loved it. It was quick, fast paced and I loved the characters. Did I mention I loved Oliver? Whilst I don't think it is completely necessary to read this before plunging straight into Off the Page I loved understanding the characters back stories. So even though the plotline was a little repetitive with not much action, it was a super quick and easy read and in my opinion made reading Off the Page that little bit more enjoyable.

"Off the Page" begins a little after "Between the Lines" finishes. In this book we get to explore how Oliver takes to living his life in the human world with Delilah, his exerts at school and the many blunders he makes along the way. Off the Page was heart warming and super funny - it often had me laughing out loud in public places!

In particular I loved all the scenes of Oliver at school, but in particular the one where he tried to make up with Delilah after the argument. I was almost crying with laughter as I read the scene in which he marched into the cafeteria, dressed as a prince, trying to make a grand gesture to win back her heart.

All in all I would rate Between the Lines 4 stars and 87% and I would give Off the Page 4.5 stars and 92%
If you live in the UK you can purchase Between the Lines here and Off the Page here.
If you live in the US you can purchase Between the Lines here and Off the Page here.


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