BLACKPLUME

lover of written words

Every Day by David Levithan

on January 16, 2013

Every Day

“I am a drifter, and as lonely as that can be, it is also remarkably freeing. I will never define myself in terms of anyone else.”

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.

Personal Thoughts:

First few sentences of David Levithan I know I’m gonna love Every Day already. But love is an understatement of what I found in this book. It is so beautiful, gripping and full of originality that I can hug the author while crying if he happens to be in front of me after I finished reading. I hope to meet David Levithan in person someday.

Every Day is just one proof how amazingly good David Levithan is as an author. He takes an ambitious concept and weaved it into something beautiful, poignant and memorable. His passion for language is unmistakable. I can read and quote his words over and over without getting tired. In fact I nearly filled every page of this book with post-it just to mark all his beautiful quotes/passages which I know I’ll be reading again soon. The way he crafted his words were gorgeous and flowing with passion and emotions. His sentences are alive and his philosophical view of things and life is both remarkable and thought provoking.

Imagine waking up one day in a different body. Imagine living a life of someone for a day. How will you feel? What will you do for a day as someone not you? This is the case of A. A is neither a boy nor a girl but in this review I will refer A as a boy because I think it would be much easier for readers to picture him as a male and also because he was first introduced in the story under a male body. Since A was born, he lives a life of other person for one day before he was pushed to another body the next day. Normally he live a life of a person with the same age as him. Sometimes a boy, sometimes a girl. Different body, different appearance, different health status, different religious belief, different life EVERY SINGLE DAY. He doesn’t know how or why it is the way it is, and he stop trying to figure it out.

“I stopped trying to figure it out a long time ago. I’m never going to figure it out,any more than a normal person will figure out his or her own existence. After a while, you have to be at peace with the fact that you simply are. There is no way to know why. You can have theories, but there will never be proof.”

Everyday he is seeing life in different view, he is living life of different people and he is perfectly contented with that. Until he meet Rhiannon, a girl who makes him want things he never thought possible. For the first time in his life, he wants something permanent. After spending a lifetime of loneliness, drifting through life, living one day at a time he finally want to experience some continuity. To be part of something and be real. He doesn’t want to be a life passerby anymore. But the question is, is it really possible? Can he change what he is? Can he really live in one single body for his entire life? Will there be a chance that the thing between him and Rhiannon will work?

Just like with The Lover’s Dictionary, David Leviathan used the idea of “love without gender specific” in this book. His idea of loving someone no matter what he/she is, was placed in a higher definition. As A drift from one body to the next every day, he changed physically everyday. Even A doesn’t have any idea who will he be the next day. But even he changes everyday, his feelings for Rhiannon never changed. While Rhiannon had a hard time coping up with the changes, especially on their fist few meetings. Even if she believed A’s story it’s still not easy for her as she never knows what A will look like the next day. At some point their relationship shows how we usually accept or love others based on their physical appearances. Maybe we don’t have the same problem with A, who have to changed body everyday but like Rhiannon there will be a time that we won’t be able to see beyond the physical appearance. We can become judgmental.

Not only A changed body everyday, he can also access memories of the person the body he is using. That’s why it is much easier for him to act like the same person for a day. In living one day of other person’s body, he get the chance to live the way the person lives, he can see the world in other person’s perspective which somehow makes him wiser than a regular teenager.

But despite of being a different person everyday, A’s voice as a narrator possess a distinct quality in it. I don’t know how David Levithan do it, but it is easy for me to distinguish A’s character beyond the body he posses for the day. And the best part is, I can also easily picture the character of the body he posses. It’s like two characters in one, acting one, walking and talking at the same time, making same/different decisions, but you can still differentiate the one from the other. Even A is in different body everyday, David Levithan still manage to retain A’s own identity without losing the actual character he posses. A is definitely a solid character.

Other than the highly original concept, and more than the love story what I really like about this book is how David Levithan easily scatter profound ideas in the story without being too preachy. The book can easily leave thousand of thoughts to ponder after reading. From simple things that we usually take forgranted to the most important things in life. Other readers may find it too philosophical but for me, they are perfect reminder if not an eye opener. I enjoy reading all those passages and marking every pages of my book.

“This is the trap of having something to live for: Everything else seems lifeless.“

Another thing that keep my mind busy while reading is thinking how the story will end. There were lots of theories and possible endings running in my mind as the story can go indifferent ways. But in the end David Levithan surprise me. He did not go to the obvious nor the fantasy version. Instead he nailed a perfect story by leaving a surprising and inevitable ending.

Every Day is a highly original story that is overflowing with possibilities. With its gripping and unique plot, solid and extraordinary character, captivating and beautiful writing Every Day is a pleasure to read.

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6 responses to “Every Day by David Levithan

  1. Iphigene says:

    I’ve recently got into reading David Levithan’s work. So far I’ve read the No Kiss List and Love it the Higher Law and i enjoyed his writing immensely. So i’m on a trip right now with his books. I’m not a big YA fan, but I just like how he writes his characters and how he melds all of it together. Also, i’m a big fan of his exploration of the exploration of love in a non-gender specific thing. I’m keeping my eye on this book, except its getting harder to find. I wish i bought it the moment I saw it. Sigh. Lovely review…its actually you’re review of Lover’s Dictionary that made me want to check out the author. Unfortunately…that book is hard to find too.

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    • blackplume says:

      Thanks Myra. Glad you like the review. David Levithan is one of my few favorite YA authors. Every time I’ll be picking one of his books to read, I know I will enjoy it right away. I can’t get enough of his writings.

      I’m trying to get a copy too of his other books. I only read a few and I really love to read all his works. But as you said they are quite hard to find, even here in Manila. I hope you’ll get the chance to read Every Day and The Lover’s Dictionary. Those two were my top pics so far from all the books that I’ve read from him. I haven’t read the two books you mentioned but definitely on my list of books to buy and read.

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  2. […] Everyday by David Levithan by Blackplume – comment by Iphigene […]

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  3. chin says:

    i love this one too. David Levithan is one of the best YA authors out there. His writing style is uncomparable! so unique and flowing! and his choice of words!!! ahhh.. can’t even describe it! he is so good! you should try his other works too especially his latest works! You’ll love it for sure!

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  4. […] is not in his comfort zone. As of I know this is something new for him, unless you want to classify Every Day as paranormal which for me is not. Invisibility also happens to be the first and only book so far […]

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  5. […] everyone first with some of wonderful quotes from the book. Just like with David Levithan’s Every Day there so many nice quotes from Clash that I want to share. Though they are not as profound as […]

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