In the musty library of his grandmother's strange, old house, Yeats reunites a pair of pirate bookends that turn out to be more than they seem. These salty-tongued rogues can magically transport readers directly into the books they read, though they won't neccessarily help them get out.
Yeats, assisted by the pirates, navigates the unfamiliar world of the story of The Arabian Nights--dodging guards and tigers and the dangerous things that lurk in the margins of the stories--in order to save a long-lost girl and bring peace to his family. But sometimes the magic of storytelling can be hard to break...
First, I really dislike when the book jacket is incorrect. There aren't tigers in Between Two Ends, but there is a panther. The person who creates book jackets should really be familiar with the novel they are advertising.
As for the novel itself, I really wanted to like it. The cover is phenomenal. The premise is really intriguing. I liked the set-up: I understood why Yeats would risk so much danger because the problem was intensely personal. Solving it was the only way Yeats could help save his father's sanity and his parents' marriage.
I loved the references to poetry and works of literature. I loved the cats. I liked the descriptions of Arabia, the dust and the smells. It was very evocative.
But somewhere along the line, the story just fell flat. It's a quick read, but not at all engrossing. I couldn't bring myself to really care whether or not Shari escaped from the book. I never doubted Yeats' safety. And the bit characters were a little too deus ex machina for my taste.
Some really good stuff here, but not enough to warrant anything higher than
Three out of five schimitars.
Release Date: May 2011
Reading Level: Grade 3+
Where In Dunlap Public Library's Collection: YPL WAR
Don't believe me: Check out these reviews of Between Two Ends:
Cracking the Cover
Simple Pleasures Book Blog