cover image Between the Lines

Between the Lines

Jodi Picoult and Samantha Van Leer, illus. by Yvonne Gilbert and Scott M. Fischer. Simon Pulse/Bestler, $19.99 (368p) ISBN 978-1-4516-3575-1

Prolific and bestselling author Picoult teams up with her teenage daughter to pen a clever YA romance about the magical relationship between a loner and her fictional “Prince Charming.” Imagine 15-year-old Delilah McPhee’s surprise when she starts to have a conversation with Prince Oliver, the hero of a fairy tale she adores. From Oliver she learns that characters in a story lead very different lives when a book is shut—in Oliver’s “reality,” the story’s villain is actually a butterfly aficionado, and Oliver has no interest in his betrothed, Seraphima. Elements from Picoult’s other novels—alternating character viewpoints with distinguishing fonts, snappy chapter endings—are present, and the story is peppered with pop culture references to The Hunger Games, the Kindle Fire, and the X-Men, as well as comic relief in the form of characters like a talking horse that thinks it has a weight problem. The reason given for Delilah’s obsession with the fairy tale—like her, Oliver grew up without a father—is weak, but that’s unlikely to trouble readers who will be swept up by the romantic premise. Ages 12–up. Agent: Laura Gross, Laura Gross Literary Agency. (June)