On talking about one of my recent book hauls with the lovely Ana fiches de lectures, we decided to read the one title which both of us had in common: Every Day by David Levithan. I personally do not read many young adult titles, but Levithan is an author whom I will always make exceptions for, as I have so enjoyed everything of his which I have read to date.
The premise of Every Day is both simple and original – A, our gender-free protagonist, is a sixteen-year-old who wakes up in a different sixteen-year-old’s body each morning. (Please note that I will be referring to A as ‘him’ merely for the ease of writing a review.) On the day in which we meet him, A has woken up as a rude, sullen boy named Jason, and tries to live the day out as he expects Jason would. Things are turned on their head as soon as A reaches Jason’s school, however, and quickly falls for his kind girlfriend, Rhiannon. A tends to try and forget about those whom he has become and interacted with on a daily basis to save overcomplicating things, but he is soon finding ways to meet up with Rhiannon – whom he slowly lets into his secret – whilst inhabiting different teenage bodies.
Many issues – both positive and negative – are touched upon or discussed at length throughout the novel, from teenage relationships and their lasting power, relationships with siblings and parents, and friendships to fear, drug use, and suicide. Levithan builds the relationship between A and Rhiannon so well, through the use of many distinctively different characters. His sculpting is skilful and sensitive, and there is a sense of gritty darkness which is introduced to the novel as it goes on. A’s existence is well charted from beginning to end, and the almost unpredictable ending is refreshing.
Every Day is, like Levithan’s other work, so tenderly written. He sculpts such vivid scenes and his characters spring to life as soon as they are introduced. He has a real gift for slipping inside the skins of his protagonists, and seeing the world as they would. A lot of his writing is beautiful, and he adds so many depths to his work. Whilst his style is easy to read, Levithan still manages to create thought-provoking novels, and Every Day is perhaps the best example of this which I have come across thus far. The novel is certainly one of Levithan’s best, and its clever ideas, beautiful writing and themes hold equal appeal for every reader.
You can read Ana’s review here.