The Girl In Between (Book 1) by Laekan Zea Kemp


My Thoughts:

Firstly, this is book one out of four, and this first book is free so scroll down for the link! Also, The Girl In Between ends on a cliffhanger, (an equally satisfying and frustrating cliffhanger in my opinion -C.L.), but still a cliffhanger. So cliffhanger haters, go and find another book.

I absolutely devoured this book. I was so hooked I read it from start to finish in twenty four hours. My problem is I can’t even explain why I loved this book so much, only that I did.

The Girl In Between had both slow and fast paced moments, it had both humorous and heart breaking moments, it had lovable characters and those characters you just really want to punch in the face. It was so intriguing I just wanted to keep reading, I was so desperate for all the mysterious elements to unravel themselves. There were even parts of this story where I thought wow, Kemp is like a female version of John Green (and fellow readers thought the same too -C.L).Thought provoking and deadly addictive is how I would describe The Girl In Between. Kemp tackles some difficult, sensitive, and very real issues. The topics range from debilitating, neurological disorders, to poor mental health, to drug overdoses and addictions. Kemp has woven these topics into her story and given the reader a very realistic view, of how such issues affect the people involved directly, and the strain it can cause on their friends and families.

All the realness set aside, the fictional elements, namely the dreams Bryn has when she is experiencing one of her sleep episodes, is beautifully written. Bryn’s dream world kind of reminded me of The Lovely Bones, though the story is not quite so sinister. Bryn’s dream world is made up of all her memories and is a forever changing, vibrant landscape that sort of makes sense and then never really does. It is totally how I would imagine a hyper-real dream to be, everything made up of memories and your imagination. It was absolutely wonderful, and although it is a little confusing at times, I believe that was intentional.

‘The boy’, I have real soft spots for ‘the boy’. I can’t tell you his name, it will spoil the story, though you will find it in other reviews. ‘The boy’ finds himself washed up in Bryn’s dream world with no memories and this coincides with Bryn’s health deteriorating. Normally Bryn is completely alone in her dream world, so a boy appearing out of nowhere is completely bizarre. At first she believes he isn’t real, but they soon discover that he is very real and Bryn sets out to find him in the living world. However, what she doesn’t realize is, there’s something else in her dream world besides ‘the boy’. Something that wishes to harm her and something that can follow her in her waking hours too. You never really find out what this ‘something’ is, but it’s scary. There’s a real feeling of racing against the clock to find out the answers before both characters are lost forever.

The Girl In Between is written from Bryn’s and ‘The boy’s’ point of views, and flits between the two characters at obvious breaks and chapters. You get to discover who ‘The boy’ is as he rediscovers himself and his past. You also get to live and breathe Bryn’s disorder and the affect it has on her family. You also get the relatively normal dramas, of ‘bad fathers’, ‘dealing with recent deaths’ and ‘bad boyfriends’. All of which adds to the juicy injustice of this story as the chapters go by.

There are also the humorous, and entertaining characters. Bryn and ‘The boy’ have their moments but it’s really the minor characters who shine here. Bryn’s grandmother is a hilarious, batty, old woman, and Bryn’s cousin Dani, and friend Felix are both very entertaining too. Kemp masterfully mixes in the chuckles with the tears in this story. It never gets too heavy, and there are always some light-hearted moments to perk the story back up again.

Still, I can’t really pin down why I loved this story so much. It took a while for the story to build, and yes it was slow paced in some chapters, but I still found myself desperate to know more. Maybe it was the intelligent, well-written words, or maybe it was the unparalleled story line, or maybe it was the believable characters. I’m still not sure, I can’t put my finger down on anything, and maybe that’s because this story is brilliant in the same way when you see a beautiful firework exploding in the sky. It’s pretty for those few seconds as your eyes drink in all the details, but you’d be damned if you could catch one of it’s sparks to show to a friend later. (Yup, sappy metaphors all the way -C.L.)

The Girl In Between is definitely taking a place on my currently imaginary book shelf (please tell me there is a paperback somewhere! -C.L.). I will be looking out for more books by Laekan Zea Kemp, and I think I’ll even be purchasing the next books in this series. Seriously recommend you give this one a go guys!

From The Current Reviews:

The Good: hooked me in from the very beginning‘, ‘this story is a crazy adventure and the cliff-hanger at the very end is absolutely insane’, ‘a fabulous book‘, ‘an original and creative piece‘, ‘suspenseful and intriguing story’, ‘the characters were incredibly interesting‘, ‘awesome book!‘, ‘Laekan’s writing is vivid and imaginative, with great character building and rich with human emotions and frailty‘, ‘This book was fantastic‘, ‘different’, ‘The author created an outstanding sub-world that has its own dynamic‘, ‘The story line is excellent‘, ‘Well written and very different from other books out there‘, ‘Reading this is like a fresh of breath air‘, ‘very intense book’, ‘wonderful’, ‘amazing’, ‘Beautiful and emotional‘, ‘No insta-love, no Mary Sue, no predictable plot, no cardboard love interest, no love interestsssssss, and no frustrating main character‘, ‘Intriguing plot’, ‘It broke my heart in the best way possible’, ‘Laekan does an amazing job at world building‘, ‘Laekan Zea Kemp does a wonderful job of portraying a raw adolescent story without allowing it to fall victim to angst‘, ‘I loved the unique concept of the story‘, ‘Interesting, well written, tragic story of two lost teenagers‘, ‘Beautiful, sad, mesmerizing, inspiring, and gripping,’ ‘The Author has a fantastic imagination‘, ‘superbly written‘, ‘This book got me back into reading for pleasure‘, ‘Absorbing and fascinating story.’

The Bad: The description drew me in but the content was a let down‘, ‘While the story was quite different, it was repetitive‘, ‘Not sure whether I liked it or not‘, ‘The swearing is completely unnecessary and the story is not in any way finished which is hugely frustrating’, ‘Confusing…..good story, but hard to follow. The ending had no closure’, ‘I enjoyed the book but I did actually skip through certain parts‘, ‘elements of the story were rushed and not explored as much as they could have been‘, ‘Long winded and a inconclusive ending‘, ‘Idea interesting but it lost something for me and I didn’t like the dialogue‘, ‘boring’.

The Darn Right Ugly: If it takes so long for a book to get interesting, I probably shouldn’t be wasting my time on it.‘, ‘Disjointed, garbled and almost impossible to find any direction to the story.’

The Unicorns:If you’re looking for a well written, YA Paranormal with a unique concept, excellent world building, well rounded characters and HEART. pick this up ‘cos its free and so UNDERRATED!!!‘, ‘This story has the makings of a motion picture‘, ‘A really good book that leaves you wanting more every time you put it down‘, ‘Seriously could not put it down’, ‘GREAT LITERATURE DESERVES ATTENTION’.

This Book Has Been Compared/Likened To: The author John Green, and a modern day version of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet.

Release date: 30th September 2014

Pages: 289

Age Range: 15+

Contains: A very realistic side to living and dealing with a medical disorder. Descriptions and references to suicide and attempts of suicide, which may be distressing to a younger reader. And some use of foul language.

Genre(s): Paranormal, Fantasy, Young Adult.

About The Book: Bryn Reyes is a real life sleeping beauty. Afflicted with Klein-Levin Syndrome, she suffers episodes of prolonged sleep that steal weeks, and sometimes even months, from her life. But unlike most KLS patients, she doesn’t spend each episode in a catatonic state or wake up with no recollection of the time she’s missed. Instead, Bryn spends half her life in an alternate reality made up of her memories. For Bryn, the past is a place, until one day a boy she’s never met before washes up on the illusory beach of her dreams with no memory of who he is.

But the appearance of this strange boy isn’t the only thing that’s changed. Bryn’s symptoms are worsening, her body weakening as she’s plagued by hallucinations even while awake. Her only hope of finding a cure is to undergo experimental treatment created by a German specialist. But when Dr. Banz reveals that he knows more about her strange symptoms than he originally let on, Bryn learns that the boy in her head might actually be the key to understanding what’s happening to her, and worse, that if she doesn’t find out his identity before it’s too late, they both may not survive.

Amazon Kindle Rating: 4.0 Stars (4 Stars)

Goodreads Rating: 4.04 Stars (4.04 Stars)

Where to Buy?

Amazon UK Kindle Ed: Free

About the Author: Laekan is a writer and explorer extraordinaire who grew up in the flatlands of West Texas. She graduated from Texas Tech with a BA in Creative Writing and is the author of the multi-cultural New Adult novels The Things They Didn’t Bury, Orphans of Paradise, and Breathing Ghosts, as well as the YA Paranormal series, The Girl In Between. Follow her adventures here on Goodreads, on her blog, or on twitter.

Author’s Websites:

Disclaimer: The reviews and opinions above are either from online sources or my own, and have been collaborated together for the ease and benefit of potential new readers. All ratings have been collected from the date of this blog’s publishing and will potentially change in the future.


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