Title: Between the Lives
Author: Jessica Shirvington
Genre: Young Adult
The perfect life or the perfect love. You choose.
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: 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 the other.
With this new knowledge, Sabine begins a series of increasingly risky experiments that bring her dangerously close to the life she’s always wanted. But if she can only have one life, which is the one she’ll choose?
I received this book from the publisher in exchange for a review.
I was sure that I was gonna love this book. After all, it’s about a girl (Sabine) who has two lives; she lives one for 24 hours and than she shifts to the other. She’s been like that for as long as she can remember. But something has changed now – when she breaks her arm in one life, she thinks it’s gonna be broken in her other life too, but then she shifts and her arm is fine. So she thinks she may be able to die in one life and keep living the other. All she has to do is pick a life.
Sabine is 18-years-old but she has lived every day twice, so she has actually lived for 36 years. She’s still really immature. When her parents catch her with knives and pills that she used to test her I-can-get-rid-of-one-life theory, they want an explanation. Instead of making something up, she tells them the truth. Of course they think she’s crazy so she ends up in a hospital.
In one life (Roxbury life) she lives with her parents and her little sister. In her Wellesley life, she lives with her mother and two brothers. In Roxbury she’s poor, in Wellesley she’s rich. Also, in Wellesley she has a boyfriend Dex. He’s described as the perfect boyfriend and he loves her so much, but she doesn’t really like him. She’s only dating him because… well, I actually don’t know why. Maybe because she’s fucking dumb? Why the hell would you date somebody you aren’t interested in? I felt really sorry for Dex (at first). I hated what he did later on in the book.
I don’t understand why is her Wellesley life considered the ‘perfect life’. Is it just because of the money? Cause I can’t really see what else is better. It’s definitely not because of the boyfriend.
The character I actually liked (at first) was Ethan. He works in the hospital she’s in. I liked the tests he gave her. It was pretty much the only way I could think of for her to prove that she has two lives. I get that they liked each other but ‘falling in love’? I didn’t really buy that.
It’s difficult to believe that her parents never noticed anything strange when she was a kid. If she really thought that everybody has two lives, she probably mentioned something sometimes. Maybe she would talk about her other family or ask somebody what their other life is like. And why is she so terrified of the Shift? It doesn’t make sense.
If I was her, I would never want to get rid of either life. Having two lives seems great (maybe confusing sometimes, but still great). I loved the premise of the book and if there are any books similar to this I’d love to read them. But this one just wasn’t very good.