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, A has no gender or form.
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 every day. 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 tend to focus on how it’s okay to be different, this novel examines more of how we are all 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 main plot 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 conveniently 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 contemporary stories with slices of fantasy elements makes the world feel more alive and vibrant.
I know it was announced Levithan is writing another book in this world, Rhiannon, 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 fromNaomi and Ely’s No Kiss List might say.
- This novel goes in the head of a teenager living with mental illness like inWill Grayson, Will Grayson
- Second book with character named after a song, the first being Toney inBoy Meets Boy
- References a lot of YA books;Feed,The Book Thief, Destroy All CarsandFirst Day on Earth, the latter which are Scholastic Books
Want more? Check out Kat’s other David Levithan reviews
I’m a lifelong reader who started blogging about YA books in 2011 but now I read in just about every genre! I love YA coming of age stories, compelling memoirs and genre bending SFF. You can find me talking all things romance at Romance and Sensibility.