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Outside the Lines
Amy Hatvany
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Outside the Lines

3.86  ·  Rating Details ·  4,483 Ratings  ·  506 Reviews
When Eden was ten years old she found her father, David, bleeding out on the bathroom floor. The suicide attempt led to her parents' divorce, and David all but vanished from Eden's life. Since childhood, she has heard from him only rarely, just enough to know he's been living on the streets and struggling with mental illness. But lately, there has been no word at all.


Paperback, 355 pages
Published February 2012 by Washington Square Press (first published January 1st 2012)
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Like my sister, Deanne, I wish I could rate books in half rather than whole stars. This book was an okay plus. I liked it fine. On the "okay" side, it definitely had characteristics of simplistic chick lit with the all "too good to be true" romance between Eden, the damsel in distress, and Jack, her knight in shining armor. All of their banter made me want to say, "oh, please", or as my sister, Donna, used to say, "Spare me". I kept waiting for Jack's dark side to come through. If it had, the no ...more
Feb 02, 2015 Michael rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: five-star-books
David West experiences the highest of highs and the lowest of lows. At his best he is a fun filled and loving husband and father. His greatest creation is his daughter, Eden, who he teaches to cook, plant flowers in what they affectionately call 'The Garden of Eden' and paint beautiful pictures of her. But at his worse the demons in his head turn him into someone totally different, capable of violence, infidelity and unpredictable behaviour. Refusing to take his meds because it stifles his creat ...more
Eden West loved her father with a deep intensity; the emotional highs and lows were a part of her life, but when David West was on a high he was an incredibly fun person to be with. He was an extremely talented artist; he also taught Eden to cook – she was standing on a stool helping her dad to whisk eggs at three years of age. Eden’s Mum, Lydia was the stability of the household. But as Eden grew up and her father’s mental instability worsened, Lydia found it harder and harder to overlook the d ...more
Feb 07, 2012 Ann rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
As children we search for absolutes, black or white, but no gray. But most of our lives are spent in the gray area, and we soon learn to search out our own truths with compassion and tolerance. “Outside The Lines” is one of the most compassionate, honest books I’ve read in a long time.

Amy Hatvany takes on the huge subject of mental illness in her second novel. The story of a father and daughter, David and Eden, is told by alternating between their two points of view. The novel begins with Eden
Apr 13, 2013 Dee rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Review Copy Provided by Author

I rarely write a review for a book as soon as I finish it because I want to let my thoughts sit and mold in my mind for a few days. So i’m actually not sure why I am writing this review right now – but it just feels like I need to write about it. Maybe it is just me, but there seem to be so few fiction books that deal with mental illness as a topic, that when I find one I want to savor it. Which I did with Outside the Lines. Normally a book of its length would take
T. Greenwood
Jan 04, 2012 T. Greenwood rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Amy is a friend of mine, and I have been reading her novels for years now. She consistently delivers flawed but lovable protagonists who struggle with credible and meaningful issues, and her latest, Outside the Lines, is no exception. This novel tells the story of Eden West, a young woman whose artist father is waging a losing battle with mental illness and substance abuse. When she is ten years old, her father's failed suicide attempt ends in her parents' divorce and his departure from her life ...more
Shelleyrae at Book'd Out
With it's intimate portrait of mental illness, Outside The Lines is a compelling and thought provoking novel. Eden was just ten when she last saw her father. Her childhood was marred by his strange behaviour as he battled an undiagnosed mental illness, refusing the medication that stabilised his mood but silenced his creative muse. Now in her thirties, triggered by her mothers bout with cancer, Eden is searching for her father, desperate to reconnect and determined to save him.

Told in chapters t
Diane S ☔
Dec 31, 2011 Diane S ☔ rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another emotionally wrought novel by Hatvany. Ten year old Eden watches her father give in to his mental illness, not willing to take the medications that make him feel drained and artistically incapable, he does the only think he thinks he can do to quiet the monsters. At the age of thirty, she tries to find the father she loved and thought abandoned her. Told in alternate voices, Eden's and her dad's, we trace this journey, also hearing in his own words how his illness made him unable to live ...more
Celeste Noelani McLean
Ultimately disappointing.

The premise is solid and exciting, and Amy Hatvany clearly has the chops to tackle this subject matter; she handles the characters of David and young Eden with beauty and grace. The treatment of present day Eden, however, feels like it belongs in a completely different book of lesser quality. The build up of David and young Eden feel organic and authentic. While heavy handed, even the cooking scenes seemed to fit somehow. Without that feel of authenticity, the present d
Laura Kay Bolin
Jan 06, 2012 Laura Kay Bolin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

There is a hole in Eden West’s heart, an empty spot aching to be filled with the love of her father. Growing up Eden had loved and adored her father, David. She had been the apple of David’s eye…his reason-- his hope in his dark world of depression and bipolar. Twenty years have gone by since that fateful day when David left her, abandoned her…without as much as a word. After her mother battles breast cancer, Eden realizes she needs to find him. She begins
Dec 15, 2011 Amy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
If you had a parent that was constantly unreliable and then one day disappears altogether, would you spend your precious time searching for him? This is exactly what Eden does, and ends up encountering on the way much more than she ever expected to.

When Eden was ten years old she found her father, David, bleeding out on the bathroom floor. The suicide attempt led to her parents’ divorce, and David all but vanished from Eden’s life. Since childhood, she has heard from him only rarely, jus
Vanessa Montês
May 06, 2014 Vanessa Montês rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: emprestaram-me
E estes sentimentos, de filha e pai, foram tão bem explorados, que haviam partes que apenas apertavam o meu coração e ficava mesmo sem palavras para o que estava a ler. Nesta viagem, pela descoberta do seu pai, Eden descobre-o não só a ele, mas a si mesma, ao amor da sua vida e sobre o que quer para o seu futuro. Foi um livro super enternecedor e até mesmo profundo.

Adorei-o, foi um dos livros que mais prazer me deu em ler nos últimos tempos e sem dúvida alguma que o recomendo a todos, sem qualqu
Allie Smith
Mar 15, 2012 Allie Smith rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction-women
4.5 stars. This was a really good story. Heartbreaking, but satisfying. Oh, the father daughter relationship….so important and so complicated. The author addresses the possibility that a woman’s relationship with her father, lays the foundation for all future relationships with the opposite sex. Sounds plausible. But if the relationship was messed up – look out.
Eden adored her father, and her father, David, adored her. David, however, suffered from bi-polar disorder. As a little girl, Eden did e
Liz Laughlin
Aug 19, 2013 Liz Laughlin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
By far the best book I have EVER EVER EVER read.

Amy Hatvany, I congratulate you, for everything. You truly impacted my life, and as an aspiring author, I know exactly what to aim for. This is the kind of book that you could just read over and over. I will admit, I'm not an easy critic. I know what I want in a book and seek to find it. This made me cry. The way she outlines father and daughter relationship is so true and yet so sad. We keep rooting for her dad to pull through, to just pick up the
Elif Yılmaz
Mar 10, 2014 Elif Yılmaz rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Nasıl ağladım ya. Kıza da yazık babaya da. David için kesin bir şey söylenemese de bunalımda olduğu çok açık. Bence en başta yapılan hata onu anlamaya çalışmaktansa onun üzerine gitmek olmuş. Lydia onu severek kurtarmaya çalıştığını söylüyor ama bana hemen sevmekten vazgeçmiş gibi geldi. Ayrıca onu ilaçla tedavi edecek bir doktor bulmak yerine ilk baştan konuşarak tedavi edecek birini bulabilirlermiş. Psikologla Psikiyatrist arasında ki fark bu işte. Her neyse ben David i hem sevdim hem de ona ç ...more
Oct 20, 2015 Maria rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A minha estreia na escrita desta autora, da qual tinha muita curiosidade em ler algo. Gostei da escrita e do tema em si, apesar de esperar um pouco mais. Acho que se enrolou um bocadinho de depois tudo de precipitou rapidamente. Mas fiquei com vontade de ler mais pelo tipo de escrita, estando mais 2 livros a aguardar em lista de espera
Dec 29, 2014 Deborah rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Amy Hatvany's latest novel, Outside the Lines, provides a beautiful insight into mental illness - both from the perspective of the person struggling with the disease and those around them.

Eden idolised her father and loved to hear the story of how her parents - her conservative mother Lydia and eccentric (and artistic) father David - met.

However David's eccentricity turned out to be something else. Until she's 10 Eden's childhood roller-coasters along with her father's manic / depressive moods.

Oct 21, 2014 Mariazita rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Um livro muito emotivo, cheio de sentimentos, um romance que de uma forma delicada nos fala sobre problemas mentais, e a luta das famílias para conseguirem manter a sua sanidade mental e tentar ajudar quem passa por esta doença.
Eden perde o pai quando tinha dez anos, depois de ter assistido a tentativa de suicídio do seu pai, este desaparece da sua vida.Ela mais tarde irá tentar descobrir-lo , sabendo que o seu pai sofre de uma doença mental, que o deixa instável, e que desde sempre evitou tomar
Isn’t it ironic?

I'm not the right person to talk about the central figure of the book, so I’ll just stick to the story. It wasn’t particularly captivating or emotional but it was a well told and developed story. The only part that didn’t feel entirely right was the end. After so much build-up, the reunion was short-lived, so it felt somewhat undervalued. The same emphasis given to Eden’s search should’ve been put into her acceptance, which happens almost overnight. Jack’s perfection could’ve be
Mar 12, 2012 Laurel-Rain rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Throughout Eden West's childhood, she fiercely loved her father David, with whom she had a special bond. He taught her to cook, the two of them planted a garden together that they dubbed The Garden of Eden, his paintings often featured Eden, and the special moments between them were like treasures. Especially since, for all of their years together, David also struggled with mental illness: an excruciatingly debilitating mood disorder that defined his interior world through voices, confusing thou ...more
Apr 28, 2012 Jodie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2012
A touching story about the lost relationship between a father and daughter that is nicely told between shifting narratives and time frames.

When Eden is 10 her father, David, tries to commit suicide and she finds him -- what could be worse on her already delicate psyche? The narrative of David was by far my favourite. His overwhelming sense of worthlessness was brilliantly brought to life through Ms Hatvany's words. His longing to just be; his own complete and utter loss as to why he can't get i
Shannon Dyer
Oct 18, 2014 Shannon Dyer rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Round up to 4.5 stars. Incredibly painful but enlightening. A powerful testimony to the harm good intentions can do. For some, living outside the lines of society really is best, even if it hurts those who love these people. Eden's love for her father is plain to see, but equally plain is his inability to conform. His demons are too strong. Sometimes, the best way to show love is to let go, even if it's a heartbreaking process.
Jan 25, 2013 Milissa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I. could. not. put. this. book. down.

I might be more fascinated than most when it comes to "the human mind." The ability to think is amazing...and something people just take for granted. So a story that involves mental illness is interesting by itself. The author gave this character a real voice...not just narrative about what others think regarding this character...but she describes the character's actual thoughts and struggles. Hooked.

The story was believable, heartbreaking, and hopeful. I wa
Dion Ribeiro
Jan 29, 2016 Dion Ribeiro rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Este foi o primeiro livro que li de Amy Hatvany e confesso que estou feliz por ter mais um desta autora a aguardar leitura, na minha biblioteca.
Este é um romance muito comovente, que nos fala de uma família destroçada na sequência de uma doença mental que atingiu David, que acaba por perder a família. Eden, que nunca se conformou com a ausência do pai, que tanto amava, decide procurá-lo e vai ser com a ajuda de Jack que vai prosseguir as suas buscas...
Gostei muito e recomendo.

May 31, 2014 Erica rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was good, don't get me wrong, I just felt there was a lot missing. As in, the meat of the story was sort of washed out with a bunch of extraneous stuff that mattered very little to the heart of the matter. The story of David's mental illness and Eden's struggle to find him and deal with her childhood was the story that I cared most about... that story was well told and very sad. Sometimes, the mentally ill are beyond help or rather, they are beyond fixing. That part of the story was wh ...more
Jan 26, 2016 Sónia rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Uma história bonita que traz muitas emoções à flor da pele.
Foi uma leitura viciante (há muito que não lia um livro em tão pouco tempo!)
Apr 18, 2012 Lori rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Expertly done! The novel divides your time between a father struggling with mental illness and the daughter he walked away from, both then and now. Two voices, two time periods, and never a misstep. Ms. Hatvany not only kept my attention, but had me rooting for both characters to find happiness. Great read!
Apr 03, 2012 Kristine rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 4-star-rating
This was a very easy book to read. I love the fact that it was told from the view point of both Eden and her father David and went back and forth from 20 yrs prior and present day. It made the story flow while giving readers a full understanding of the complications in their relationship. I reaaly enjoyed it.
Jul 03, 2012 Rita rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
1/2 way through. Story of mental illness at it's worst! Interesting book!

Finished reading-- worth reading. If we listen carefully through the book we can learn a bit about dealing with the mentally ill. So many times we expect them to magically reside in our world, when it is impossible. Good read!
Nov 25, 2014 Melissa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is now the third book I've read by Amy Hatvany in a matter of months and I am eagerly awaiting whatever she comes out with next. She is such a talented writer who keeps a story flowing and doesn't let go of her readers even when they're not actively reading her book at the time. She amazes me with her writing talent!
I did not know what to expect from Outside the Lines, but I loved it from the very first page. Both Eden and David's stories are so compelling and they feel like real people. Am
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Amy Hatvany was born in Seattle, WA in 1972, the youngest of three children. She graduated from Western Washington University in 1994 with a degree in Sociology only to discover most sociologists are unemployed. Soon followed a variety of jobs – some of which she loved, like decorating wedding cakes; others which she merely tolerated, like receptionist. In 1998, Amy finally decided to sell her car ...more
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