Saturday, 17 May 2014

Between The Lives by Jessica Shirvington

Between The Lives

Author: Jessica Shirvington
Publisher: HarperCollins Australia
Published: May 1st 2013
Goodreads // Book Depository
For as long as she can remember, Sabine has lived two lives. Every 24 hours she Shifts to her 'other' life - a life where she is exactly the same, but absolutely everything else is different: a different family, different friends, different social expectations. In one life she has a sister, in the other she does not. In one life she's a straight-A student with the perfect boyfriend, in the other she's considered a reckless delinquent. Nothing about her situation has ever changed, until the day when she discovers a glitch: the arm she breaks in one life is perfectly fine in another. 

With this new knowledge, Sabine begins a series of increasingly risky experiments which bring her dangerously close to the life she's always wanted.... But just what - and who - is she really risking? 

I really enjoyed this book, and there were very few things I didn't like about it. Jessica Shirvington has created a fantastic story that engages readers from the very beginning. I would recommend this to everyone, it's definitely one of my favourite books this year (so far)!
Spoilers below, so read at your own risk!
The plot of this book was really good, I feel like there weren't any holes. I've seen some people complain we don't know why this has happened to Sabine, but I think Ethan was right when he said that it happened to everyone, they just didn't remember. I don't think we needed to know, especially because by the end Sabine didn't want or need to know herself. The contrast of her two families was also really great to read. In one life, she only had one sister whom she was incredibly close to and in contrast in her other life, Sabine had brothers who were somewhat distant until the end of the book. Shirvington has written an original story that was thoroughly enjoyable and I can't wait to read more of her work. 
I really liked this book, although there were a few things I didn't like. I'll talk about the things I did first. 
Somehow I could sympathise and understand what Sabine was going through. I obviously don't shift into a new life every night at midnight, but I feel like there are situations where I'm not exactly the same person as I usually am. I can't imagine what it would be like for Sabine to live like this forever, just reading about it made me anxious. 
I really like Sabine's character development, it took a while for her to understand but eventually she did; even if it was partly because of Ethan (whom I loved). I was happy she ended up in a good place before the book ended. Ethan was a fantastic addition to the story, I knew as soon as they met at the chemist (or pharmacy) that her parents managed, that he would be the love interest in this story. I liked that he saw the worst of her before he started to see her best. The relief Sabine felt when he told her he believed her, was shared by me. The fact that Ethan believed in her enough to even test it showed that he had feelings for her. 
There are a lot more things about this book that I loved, but there's too many to mention. Sabine's relationship with Ethan and her character development were the two most important things. Especially because they were so closely related, without Ethan, Sabine would not be in the place she was by the end of the book. I loved that there were two Ethan's, that without a doubt they would end up together even after Roxbury Ethan was gone. I liked how this was also a continuation of Ethan mentioning that he would know if he knew Sabine, and when she meets other Ethan, he does. At his core he feels like he's met her before. 
Now for the things I didn't like. 
I didn't like the scene where Sabine was cutting herself, I cringed as I read it and if I were to take out any scene, it would be that one. It lasted a little too long for my liking and I feel as if it could have been better written. 
The only other thing I didn't like about this book was that Ethan dies. I don't think I've ever been so heartbroken for a fictional character (apart from Tobias). Ethan was such a big part of Sabine's recovery (because let's face it she was going a little bit crazy for a while). It broke my heart that he died, but it also made me extremely angry that he didn't tell her it was going to happen. This wasn't a massive negative for me, it just made me upset. I did really like that he left his things to her, it was so sweet. Although their relationship seemed somewhat rushed, and almost seemed like insta-love, but I think more time passed in the book than I think so it's not a massive thing for me. 
Overall, I think this book was fantastic. It was easy to follow and the storyline was quite original. I haven't read anything like this before, or seen anything with the same idea. Jessica Shirvington broke my heart and made me smile all in one book. 
Final Rating:
I hope you enjoyed this review! More coming soon :)
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Disclaimer: This book was provided to me by the published via Netgalley but all opinions are my own and unaffected by the way I received this book.

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