Wednesday, October 03, 2012

Every Day by David Levithan

Can you imagine what life would be like if you woke up every morning in a different body -- in a different life?  This is the life of a teenager named A, who spends each day in a different body; a body that might be male or female, any ethnicity, any sexual orientation -- the only rule is that they must be sixteen years old, just like A.  

Normally, A tries to just survive in each body, to respect the life he is inhabiting and not cause any harm. (For example, if at all possible, he does their homework!)  But on the day when the novel begins,  things are different.  A wakes up as Justin and meets Justin's girlfriend Rhiannon.  Something about her makes A want to reveal more about himself, and even after he leaves Justin's body, he tries to find ways to keep in touch with her.

While the novel has a bit of Science-Fiction-y premise, the characters and their lives are completely realistic and believable. David Levithan has a gift for describing human emotions, and Every Day is no exception. Each of the lives that A inhabits has its own distinct personality and circumstances, and I found myself wanting to know more about each of them (even after A has left them behind).

Every Day can be found in the VBPL catalog, so put yourself on the hold list today -- while you're waiting for the hold, you might also enjoy Levithan's earlier works (during this election season, I especially recommend Wide Awake).  For a similar tale of inhabiting the body of other people, check out Laura Whitcomb's A Certain Slant of Light.  Readers who enjoy this sort of story might also enjoy Things Not Seen by Andrew Clements (one of my all-time favorites!)

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