The Space Between Paperback – Sep 13 2012
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About the Author
Brenna Yovanoff's debut novel, The Replacement, was an instant New York Times bestseller. She has an MFA in creative writing from Colorado State University and currently lives in Denver.
Top Customer Reviews
Brenna's writing immediately pulls you in and leaves you in her world. In this case, two worlds, Pandemonium and Earth. I didn't have any trouble keeping myself immersed in the book because her writing is so beautiful. The way she describes characters, locations and emotions is just downright lyrical that I happen to fall in love with her writing style. The pacing to me was slow and fast at times, and I found myself growing a little bored at times. It dragged on too much and even though the novel was more character based then plot driven, I was still intrigued enough to keep reading.
I'm all for the lonely and depressed characters but I was surprised at how dark the thoughts of some of the characters were! Sometimes I am surprised at how an author can evoke such evil thoughts but I guess it's not hard when one can imagine being an evil being since the thought process is completely different from any normal person's thoughts.
Beautifully flawed characters that grew a lot as the story progressed.
Stop and go at times, but incredibly fast paced in the end.
<strong>Cover and Book Design</strong>
Beautiful! Most definitely caught my eye. The red infused with steel sets the tone for the book rather nicely. Loving the embossed lettering. Nicely done!Read more ›
What a strange sad and lovely book. I was hesitant to read another story of fallen angels... But I was pleasantly surprised. This is a dark story of life, death, sorrow, love and redemption. All carefully crafted around a neatly constructed story of hell, demons, and the purpose of choices and humanity.
Oh I did not expect this book at all. Nowadays books on the YA genre are becoming less original and more plain, but in some rare moments you get one of these books that surprises you. The prose was good, calculated and direct. The story is told between two angles Daphne's and Truman's who intertwine magnificently. Daphne's life is strange and sad, she is the daughter of Lilith and Lucifer. Her half-brother Obi is missing on earth and she will go there to try to find him. She enlists the help of Truman and discovers much, much more than she imagined.
One of the things that moved me too much was the way we are introduced to Truman's pain and sadness. His suicide attempt is presented without any ribbons or cover-ups. His depression is so raw it kind of made me ache a bit reading his story. I understand this is a reason why many will find this book not as enjoyable, but I savored every bit, always finding strength when things seem lost is one of my personal views in life... Oh yes, a positive note has to be there somewhere.
This is not a book for everyone, but I do recommend it. Specially since it is a rare find these says to have a book that is not part of a series and is a standalone story.
The Space Between is a dark and haunting tale, written in wonderfully descriptive prose so that even the bleakest scenery appears vivid and harshly beautiful. The story is broken up into three parts: Hell, Earth and Heaven. As is to be expected, Pandemonium (hell) is very bleak and as a result the story doesn't fully come to life until Daphne ventures to earth. Yovanoff has an interesting take on good and evil, breaking out of the norm to allow angels to be harsh and demons to show kindness. Consequently, the characters in The Space Between are unique and original. And it was very refreshing to read a YA fantasy novel with NO love triangle! The light romance that was in the story was subtle and believable. The final battle was somewhat anti-climatic, but the story continues after the final showdown, and I very much enjoyed the unexpected ending. My one issue with The Space between was the shift between 1st person and 3rd person narrative in an attempt to show both Truman and Daphne's points of view. It was too subtle to be effective and was often confusing.
A beautifully written and fresh take on the standard YA fantasy fare, The Space Between is both eerie and yet heart-warming at the same time.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Daphne is a daughter of Lilith and Lucifer, a half-angel, half-demon creature, who looks just like an extraordinarily beautiful, dark-haired girl (well, maybe except for her unnaturally white skin and metal dogteeth). She's never been to Earth, all she knows is the gray world of Pandemonium. World where everything is made of silver and metal - the walls, the floors, the furniture, even plants and flowers! Daphne is having a hard time figuring out where she belongs. She doesn't want to be like her soulless demon sisters, who visit Earth to feed on Lost Ones' feelings of sorrow and despair. But what else lies in store for her? She has no desire to leave Pandemonium, she's perfectly content exploring Earth through the things her brother Obie brings back from his trips. That's until Obie declares that he fell in love with a human woman and he decided to leave Pandemonium forever. Just before he leaves, Obie saves a bleeding boy named Truman and brings him back to Earth with him. And then Obie goes missing. Not even Lilith's powerful mirror-sight can help locate him. It's as if he never even existed... Lilith, eternally trapped in her steel garden, can't go looking for him. The only one who can find him - who cares enough to even try - is Daphne. And the only one who can help her do that is Truman - the beautiful, broken boy, who can't even help himself.
The Space Between is different from the mainstream paranormal YA novels in many ways. It's darker and more complex than most of the stories I've read this year. It's magical and mystical, but at the same time contains a message that is all too real and profoundly significant. It's a stand-alone novel, and an amazing one at that - Brenna Yovanoff told a phenomenal, heart-breaking story without trying to drag it out into a trilogy. She could have done that. She definitely had enough mythology, characters and plot line twists to keep us entertained for a long time. And you know what? I would buy every single volume she'd wrote, I'd even pay double, just so I could spend a little more time in the magnificent world she created. This woman has a wonderful imagination and an extraordinary talent for writing. She took an already interesting myth about Lilith, added some really brilliant twists to it, and then painted it with her words. She depicted everything so well, it felt more like watching a movie (one with really awesome graphic, beautiful characters and intriguing, dark atmosphere) than reading a book. I really didn't want this book to end. But at the same time, I'm grateful that this novel stands alone. It's perfect this way: complete, satisfying and not in the least overdone or overstretched. Reading a good book is like eating a delicious dish, even the most yummy treats - if consumed in too large a portion - can leave you feeling slightly disgusted. Sometimes it's better to be left craving more, cause the feeling of satisfying fullness comes after a while. That's exactly how I feel about this book - I crave more and I really like the craving. The craving is what will keep me coming back to Yovanoff's books.
I'm not a big fan of books that have different POVs, I find them quite confusing most of the time, or at least mildly annoying. I liked the POV switches in Twilight series - but that was my first YA and, honestly, I didn't know any better back then. I absolutely loved what Patrick Ness did in his Chaos Walking Trilogy, alternating between the two MCs and a bad guy - he did a fantastic job and it worked out just great. In The Space Between, the switches between the first-person's narrative voice (belonging to Daphne) and a third-person one were done very smoothly, and, although I could probably do without them, I admit that I enjoyed getting to know Truman's side of the story. Most importantly, Brenna Yovanoff didn't do this unnecessary thing when one scene is showed from two different perspectives, not really adding anything new to the story. There weren't all that many switches, either, just a few of them, and they were quite essential ones.
There are quite a few thrilling twists to the plot, and these are the ones you really don't see coming. The Space Between is definitely a fast-paced story, one that is impossible to put down. I keep wrecking my brain to find at least one thing that I didn't like about this book, something I could nag about not to make this review sound like yet another fan-girl rave, but.. Well, I'm sorry, I come up empty handed. What can I say? I really loved this book. It's a gorgeous piece of literature, a book that you want to have on your shelf so that you could re-read it whenever you find yourself craving something extraordinary. Yovanoff's knowledge of Judeo-Christian mythology is apparent as she skilfully weaves all its fascinating details into the story. The overall atmosphere of the book reminded me of Sergei Lykanenko's Watch series (Night Watch, Day Watch, Twilight Watch, Last Watch), only it was way more elegant, glorious, dreamy and magical.
2011 is a year extremely abundant in fabulous Young Adult books, ones that you simply have to read, and The Space Between is one of them.
Daphne is a half-demon, half-angel daughter of Lucifer and Lilith. She lives in a strange sort of purgatory known as Pandemonium with her sisters, half-brother and other strange creatures from hell. Her life is far from exciting, before her brother Obie is kidnapped and Daphne travels to earth to find him -and instead finds a human boy who teaches her what it means to love and to be human.
From the very first page I was completely sucked into The Space Between. Yovanoff's unique depiction of heaven, hell and places in between was unlike anything else I've ever read -dark, twisted and yet strangely beautiful and compelling. Though I found Daphne to be a somewhat flat character, I couldn't help but find her fascinating. Yovanoff did an excellent job of creating a believable character who is innocent of real human relationships, and knows nothing about the earth or the people who inhabit it. Daphne's ignorance and self-discovery was incredibly compelling and pulled me in up until the very last page.
What really shined her for me was the writing. Not only does Yovanoff delivers a wonderfully written and atmospheric tale with captivating tones, unexpected twists and dark characters. More than anything, Yovanoff's world is completely unlike anything else I've ever read, and I love the fact that she doesn't shy away from dark characters deeper, more adult issues that infuse her novels with more depth than the average YA novel.
Yovanoff shines in her second novel, and I can't wait for the third. According to her blog, it's called Paper Valentine and will be out in 2013.
Yovanoff is a master when it comes to the concept of evil. She manipulated the concepts we would generally diagnose as evil into something unrecognizable. The shades of grey were so plentiful that they became blurred, and it was hard to pick out who was supposed to be evil and who was supposed to be good. Her version of Hell was also fascinating. A city completely fabricated out of steel and chrome so that when the gates to the furnace opened, it wouldn't burn to the ground. Naturally, this means that anything that couldn't withstand the heat was reduced to ash. Time means nothing as there is no concept of time; it just doesn't exist. And ever-present is the Pit, the never-ending Hoard of souls, who "come into the city thrashing and shrieking" but after being visited by the pain demons, are left "blank and silent." Terrifying as it is, this is Daphne's home. Growing up in a city of perpetual evil, you would think Daphne would be a little rough around the edges, but somehow she escapes unscathed, full of innocence and the fear of her inner demon.
This was one of the things I had the hardest time believing. As the daughter of fallen angel Lilith, who has been banished from Heaven and Earth, and the devil himself, Lucifer, I found it hard to believe Daphne could be as good and naive as Yovanoff showed her to be. Even though it's all she's ever really known, she's desperate to be nothing like her sisters, the Lilim, who live to feed on the misery and desire of mortals. She seemed almost repulsed at the idea of being like the Lilim, yet her disgust at their enjoyment of feeding on the feelings of mortals was never really explained. Was it that she saw it as an addiction? Or that she found it to be morally repulsive? As an immortal being, would she even believe in the mortal concept of morality? Was she worried she would end up cold and distant like her mother? It just wasn't touched on, and so I couldn't understand her aversion to it.
I also couldn't get a clear image of Daphne. She was seemingly mocked by her sisters, leading me to believe she was younger then them, and her inexperience with Earth also suggested that, but her age was never really touched on. I found it hard to picture her metal teeth, and spent a lot of time wondering why they had been made metal in the first place. At times they seemed awkwardly distracting - like when Daphne's first looking for Truman and a girl at a party asks her if she's wearing metal caps - and at other times they seemed glaringly absent - like when Truman first meets Daphne on Earth and he doesn't comment on her having them. I just didn't see a point to pointing out that she had metal teeth, if they weren't meant to serve a purpose.
I enjoyed the supporting characters, but wasn't overly attached to any of them. Truman's self-destructive behaviour was hard to pity, as I didn't understand the depth of his pain. He was never forced to come to terms with his grief over losing his mother, or his guilt at his attempted suicide, and I really disliked that he was able to find redemption (and that he was only able to see the value of his life) because of another person. Raymie should have been shocking, but Daphne's calm reaction to finding her in a storage locker (and subsequent calmness in her interactions with Raymie) had me feeling quite nonchalant. I feel like she could have played a much larger, more interesting role, but the reasons for Azrael's interest in her was never explained. Beelzebub's admission at the end, while shocking, was underplayed by how little attention it was given. His reasons, and the consequences, were glazed over and I was left with more questions then answers. On an unrelated note: thoughts on Yovanoff's choice to name two different characters (Lucifer and Beelzebub) names which the Old Testament both accredit to Satan? I admit, I assumed Beelzebub would admit to being Daphne's father, Lucifer, and was almost shocked to learn they were in fact two completely different characters.
Funny enough, one of my biggest issues was something I didn't figure out until about half way through the book. I kept having the feeling like I was reading about someone while simultaneously feeling like I was experiencing their thoughts first hand. Then realization hit and after flipping back through several chapters I realized what had been bugging me for so long: Daphne speaks through an oddly-stylized first-person narrative, while Truman speaks from a third-person narrative. Once I figured out what was happening, it became much easier to read, and I imagine on a re-read I would be able to enjoy the story from the beginning without the nagging feeling like something was wrong.
I'm not going to get in to the ending. It was rushed and confusing and I think I'm pretty angry with it (but I'm still hoping that it's just confusion and what really happen will sort itself out. But if what I think happened is what in fact happened, then I'm pretty pissed.) It most definitely left me with too many questions, and a dementedly twisted happily ever after that I'm not sure I could explain even if I wanted to.
Even with it's faults, I still really enjoyed The Space Between. Yovanoff has a way with words that's almost poetic and her world-building, if haunting, is beautiful. It was easy to get caught up in Daphne's world, and I had a hard time putting the book down.
As cliché as the story sounds, I liked that the characters were part demon, it's a bit different than the typical vampire/werewolf/faerie that is prevalent today. Daphne is a likeable character, she is naïve but brave. In hell she has no feelings but upon going to Earth she starts to learn about them and the process is fascinating. Truman however, I could have lived without him, sure he goes through his own little transformation during the book but he is almost TOO tortured in the beginning, I get I was supposed to feel sorry for him but he made me want to roll my eyes.
The twists and turns towards the end were nice, but I think haphazard. Daphne uses her `power' to fight Dark Dreadfull, a seemingly invincible monster that too easily gives up the chase, or rather the `fight' was over far to quickly and I was disappointed. Same as with Azrael. I find the author building up to this grand finale or action climax and then just dropping it off and solving it in a few paragraphs. It made for a rather dull book at those times. The ending however was pretty nice, it was sweet but again rushed. I wish the book were longer, More backstory or character development would have done so much more for it.
The Space Between is a touching and unique story of loss, love, and finding who you really are. At times I found myself angry, and sometimes so sad that my sight became blurry with unshakeable tears.
Daphne is the daughter of the first of the Fallen; Lucifer, and Lilith; Adams wife before Eve. This makes Daphne half-demon and half-angel. Living in Pandemonium, she is not only bored, but lonely and feeling unloved. She never sees Lucifer, and her mother never shown any sign of affection towards her. The only one that show's her any semblance of love is her half-brother Obie.
Obie; like Daphne, is different from Lilith's other children. Because he is the son Adam and not Lucifer, his heart is human. He spends a large portion of his time on Earth "working" in a hospital. His job is to care for "The Lost Ones." The nephilim. The children of Angels and humans. It is through his job that he finds Truman. A boy in desperate need of being saved.
Obie has gone missing after leaving Pandemonium to live with the human woman that he loves, and Daphne somehow feels that she is responsible. Because of this, she decides to search for him on Earth. There is great danger however, in the form of Azrael; the Angel of Death, and Dark Dreadful; the horrible creature that kills demons and drinks their blood.
The only person who can help Daphne is the last person that saw Obie alive. Truman. But Truman is on the road to self destruction, unable to continue on with his life after the death of his mother.
Through their journey to save Obie, Truman and Daphne find redemption and love, along with a baby. How? Read the book to find out.
The Space between is filled with exceptional creativity. The sweetness and sensitivity of the love that grows between Daphne and Truman was a delight to read.
A fantastic book that just needs a bit more editing to correct the mistakes that are still within it.
3.5 of 5 stars