Review: The In-Between by Barbara Stewart

The In-Between Genre: YA Contemporary
Published: November 5, 2013 by St. Martin’s Griffin
Length: 256 pages
Source: St. Martin’s Griffin (ARC)

When Elanor’s near-death experience opens a door to a world inhabited by bold, beautiful Madeline, she finds her life quickly spiraling out of control

Fourteen-year-old Elanor Moss has always been an outcast who fails at everything she tries—she’s even got the fine, white scars to prove it. Moving was supposed to be a chance at a fresh start, a way to leave behind all the pain and ugliness of her old life. But, when a terrible car accident changes her life forever, her near-death experience opens a door to a world inhabited by Madeline Torus . . . Madeline is everything Elanor isn’t: beautiful, bold, brave. She is exactly what Elanor has always wanted in a best friend and more—their connection runs deeper than friendship. But Madeline is not like other girls, and Elanor has to keep her new friend a secret or risk being labeled “crazy.” Soon, though, even Elanor starts to doubt her own sanity. Madeline is her entire life, and that life is drastically spinning out of control. Elanor knows what happens when your best friend becomes your worst enemy. But what happens when your worst enemy is yourself?


The In-Between by Barbara Stewart was a very interesting and intriguing read. The novel immediately begins with Elanor and her family in a car crash, and the only one that survives the car crash is Elanor (and maybe her father or her mother). The book is divided in three parts for a reason. See, Elanor’s character and situation is very tricky. Readers might (or might not) have a hard time figuring out if Elanor is really sane or insane. She claims that she has a twin sister named Madeline which got me thinking throughout the book if she really existed. This book is definitely going to make you think and predict.

Elanor’s character did not have a big impact on me. I don’t think she’s one of those heroine who I will always remember no matter how many books I’ve read. She’s shy and she has a hard time making friends. She’s a person who thinks the popular girls are so mean, but she still chooses to be friends with them rather than the ‘nice and loyal’ friend. What fascinates me about her character is that she is very complex. Like I said, I still do not know whether or not what she tells us in the novel are all true, or just her imagination.

Overall I recommend you reading this if you’re up for a spooky and mysterious read. It might confuse some readers a little bit, but for me, I thought it was great that Elanor’s situation always left me wondering. If you don’t like books with a complex plot (like the movie Inception) then this might not be for you.

3.5 of 5

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