Title: Every Day
Author: David Levithan
Series: (Every Day #1)
Pub. Date: August 28th 2012
Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers
Every day a different body. Every day a different life. Every day in love with the same girl.
There’s never any warning about where it will be or who it will be. A has made peace with that, even established guidelines by which to live: Never get too attached. Avoid being noticed. Do not interfere.
It’s all fine until the morning that A wakes up in the body of Justin and meets Justin’s girlfriend, Rhiannon. From that moment, the rules by which A has been living no longer apply. Because finally A has found someone he wants to be with—day in, day out, day after day.
Every Day tells the tale of A and his struggle of waking up in a different body every day. No matter what he does, he can’t seem to stay in the same body for more than a day, and that leaves him without constant friends, family, and overall consistency in life. Then he meets Rhiannon and suddenly he has meaning, a will to break his own rules just so he can see her again.
A, having to wake up as a new person each morning, experiences life through the eyes of an abundance of people, but only those the same age as him. A few lives he has lived include being a jock, suicidal, trans gender, gay/lesbian, overweight, addict, and gamer. The best part of all these different types of people? Issues that people struggle with are present in almost every chapter. What was a little disappointing however, was that even though there are hints of all these issues, none are really touched on. There was no history to the struggle of what it meant to be gay when people don’t always accept it; there was no talk about what it was like to be depressed, merely that it was there and it was bad; A didn’t care that he was overweight but Rhiannon did and all that showed was that we can be very judgmental; there was very little mention of what it’s like to be trans gender, to be born as a male or female but feel like the opposite in your very soul. These were present yes, but romance took over and left little room for these issues to be described or even just portrayed. It was all tell and no show.
“It’s exhausting, trying to make a bad person act good. You can see why it’s so much easier for them to be bad.” (212)
A as a character was not a very likable one, personally. He says he cares and respects for the lives of those he inhabits, he mentions is constantly and describes his guilt over the past when he was not so careful. Then he meets Rhiannon and suddenly he is fine with randomly leaving to follow Rhiannon and ruins the lives of those he inhabits without really caring. Also, it doesn’t seem like A develops or grows. He just experiences what could be called love and then let’s it go because he has to. But he himself fails to actually really develop, at least that’s what it feels like. I loved him because he was so perfectly fine with everyone no matter who they were or what they did. He was understanding and kind. But that wasn’t enough for me.
Rhiannon on the other hand is not unique or special in any way. In fact, she is a typically teenager, so the instant attraction A has for her because she is so extraordinary… it fell flat and was rendered unbelievable. She is kind and likable, sharing meaningful stories and staying with a guy she loves despite being treated badly because, well, that’s all she has and what if no one wants her after? It was a very relateable situation, but I feel she dealt with it in a bad way. She cheated, multiple times. Yes with the same guy, and A didn’t mind, but that in no way makes it okay. I like how she was able to accept A’s life and love him anyway, how she was willing to meet a new body every day just to be with him. But again, this was not enough for me to love her character.
The writing is lovely though, strong with character voice and full of popular topics. It flowed very well and was enjoyable to read. I didn’t feel much for the romance but it also didn’t bother me that it was what drove the story, because it made for some very interesting situations.
Overall, this is a very enjoyable read, it just isn’t remarkable in anything other than the fact that A is in a new body each morning.