I can view everyone as pieces of a whole, and focus on the whole, not the pieces. I have learned to observe, far better than most people observe. I am not blinded by the past or motivated by the future. I focus on the present because that is where I am destined to live.”
― David Levithan, Every Day
- Release Date: August 28th 2012
- Pages: 233
- Genre: Paranormal Romance ?
- Publisher: Knopf (Random House)
This novel is fairly different from the previous Levithan novels I've read so far. It's very high concept and cerebral. The story follows A, a who wakes up every day in someone else's body. A lives their life for one day before falling asleep and waking up in a new body the next day. A is essentially a soul without a body, A has sentient thoughts and memories, but A has no gender or form. Which makes writing this review kind of hard because I can't use pronouns.
When I first heard about this book, I thought it would essentially read like a series of short stories, but there is a continuing plot. When A meets a girl named Rhiannon while in the body of her boyfriend, Justin A falls in love with her. Now, A is will do anything to get back to her and find a way for them to be together
This novel is mesmerizing, I can't imagine the amount of thinking that has to go into a novel like this. The novel takes place over several weeks, and Levithan crafts new lives for A everyday. And while most of these lives are pretty standard there are a few moments when A is inside of a depressed or drug addicted person and has to deal with that.
While a lot of YA novels tends to focus on how it's okay to be different, this novel examines more of how we are all the alike. A changes gender, race, ethnicity, income status and religions and finds such universality in all.
The world building in this novel has to be my favorite part. A has a lot of rules about messing with people's lives. To keep track of all of A's lives, A keeps an e-mail account where A writes about what the day was like. A
Now, I was a little bit confounded by the mainplot of this novel because it relies on instalove A falls in love with Rhiannon after only spending a few hours with her. On the other hand, instalove is the only way to make A fall in love with her, since chances are he won't see her again.
A's existence is also conviently set up to where A stays within a 200 mile radius of wherever the last body he was in was. This book takes place in Maryland, which makes it pretty convenient for A to be able to get back to Rhiannon frequently.
Even with these issues, this was the perfect novel for me because it has elements of magic realism. The combination of a contemporary stories with slices fantasy elements makes the world feel more alive and vibrant.
I know it was announced Levithan is writing another book in this world, Rhinannon, so I'm hoping this is kind of a sequel and not like the novel from her POV because there is such a cliffhanger, I can't even. I just wanted to spend so much time in this world and I can't wait to go back.
References / Connections
- At one point Rhiannon says nothing bad ever happens in a Starbucks, which sounds like something Naomi from Naomi and Ely's No Kiss List might say.
- This novel goes in the head of a teenager living with mental illness like in Will Grayson, Will Grayson
- Second book with character named after a song, the first being Toney in Boy Meets Boy
- References a lot of YA books; Feed, The Book Thief, Destroy All Cars and First Day on Earth, the latter which are Scholastic Books
Want more ?Check out Kat's other David Levithan reviews