sonk’s #CBR5 Review #46: Every Day by David Levithan

Every Day is the story of A, an undefined entity/being/soul that wakes up every morning in a new body, basically supplanting the being  that the body belongs to. It has always been this way, since A can remember–A has no body of its own, no family, no true identity. A does, however, have its own thoughts and feelings and even its own email address that it uses to keep track of the bodies its inhabited and the things it has experienced. For the most part, A just floats along and does its best to not disrupt the lives of the people it inhabits, until one day it wakes up as Justin, a teenage jerk who just happens to have a beautiful, near-perfect girlfriend, Rhiannon. A falls in love with her, and the rest of the novel is its attempt to preserve that relationship and keep her close while still shifting from body to body.

Read the rest of my review here.

Travis_J_Smith’s #CBR5 Review #55: Every Day by David Levithan

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Look, Cannonballers, it’s The Time Traveler’s Wife dumbed down for teens! Just, instead of hopping around in time against his will, A wakes up each day as a different person. Both make Romeo and Juliet seem like an easy romance by comparison, the main characters in each somehow skirting coming across as creepers and/or nut jobs.

In Every Day, though, you also get a veritable who’s who of stereotypes! Here, A’s the suicidal kid. Here, the fat kid. Etc. Imagine a series of half-baked PSAs. You won’t be far off. There’s no nuance here. Levithan could’ve kept the time frame to a minimum, focusing on a couple character types in particular, letting them transcend their stereotypes.

But he’s too intent upon toying with a concept that is revealed to be just as half-baked. The internal logic of the story is tweaked throughout in order to allow for whatever Levithan needs to happen to occur, and none of the questions he poses about said logic are answered in satisfactory fashion.

It all comes to a head in the closing moments when (SPOILERS) A learns there might possibly be others like him who are able to control this power (or curse, depending upon how you look at it) with training. Having gained this knowledge, he foists the girl he’s been after, who he actually might be able to have a life with now, off on some rando like he’s the one who gets to decide these things (END SPOILERS).

Wrong, wrong, wrongity, wrong. Levithan, I don’t need a happy ending. All I ask is one that doesn’t read as a gargantuan “fuck you” to the reader and the supposed “logic” of the entire story. On that count, you failed miserably. It’s too bad, because I wanted so much to love Every Day. For it to be like The Time Traveler’s Wife’s little brother, not its brain damaged cousin.

Still, I’m too big a sucker for an attention-grabbing concept not to have at least liked it, in spite of all that. So, if you’re like me, you should be able to find something to like in Every Day. Just don’t expect The Time Traveler’s Wife, the young adult version.

Travis Smith’s blog, containing this review, as well as others, photography, and more, can be found here.