Between by Jessica Warman
Publisher: Walker & Company
Published: August 2nd 2011
Hardcover, 464 pages
Challenges: 100 Books in 2011

Elizabeth Valchar — pretty, popular and rich — wakes up the morning after her 18th 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 that Liz was following in her mother’s footsteps. But something more sinister was consuming Liz from the inside out…

While I seem to be one of the few that has not read Jessica Warman’s highly acclaimed Where The Truth Lies, after reading Between I am definitely going to now.  Right away you are drawn into Between – and while it is hard to pin point exactly why in the beginning you soon find yourself urging to quickly turn the page to read what next happens next.  
After partying with her friends on the family boat, Liz wakes up to find she is dead, in the water, face down – anything but pretty.  At first Liz cannot accept that she is dead, until a fellow ghost, Alex (who happens to have been a student at her school), shows up.  With Alex’s help and seeing scenes of her past, Liz gets a glimpse of what others saw of her: spoiled, rich, popular, mean, not-so nice.  Liz also learns more about who she is by watching those living deal with her death.
Jessica Warman’s writing style made this book very enjoyable.  The words just flow, creating wonderful yet heartbreaking scenes.  I love how her characters are developed – it is almost as if they are developing themselves, learning more and more about themselves as they find out the truths.  Jessica Warman has done a fantastic job in depicting the classes within high school, depicting how teens really are and how they are affected by others’ actions and words.  Furthermore, while many YA authors pair opposites together, Jessica Warman did so in such a beautiful way that its hard to even describe.  To say the least this is a must read!
My Rating:
 
You can find Jessica Warman on her Site


Jessica Warman is the author of Breathless, which received three starred reviews and was an ALA Best Book for Young Adults, and Where the Truth Lies. The idea for Between came from an incident in her childhood, when a local boy went missing after a party on a yacht (he was eventually found, alive).
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