Every Day

David Levithan, Author
David Levithan. Knopf, $16.99 (336p) ISBN 978-0-307-93188-7
Reviewed on: 07/09/2012
Release date: 08/28/2012
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Is it possible to disregard someone’s exterior to see—and love—that person’s true, interior self? That’s just one of the provocative questions Levithan (Every You, Every Me) asks in a novel that follows “A,” who takes over the body of a different person each day at midnight. Right around A’s 6,000th day on the planet, A meets Rhiannon—girlfriend of current host body Justin—and falls in love. A is careful not to disrupt the lives of the bodies he/she inhabits (A doesn’t identify as male or female), but that starts to change as A pursues Rhiannon. Levithan sets up the rules of this thought experiment carefully: A only hops between the bodies of teenagers (who all live fairly near each other), and A can access their memories. As a result, the story unfolds smoothly (the regular shifts between bodies give the novel a natural momentum), but it’s also less ambitious. Despite the diverse teens A inhabits, A’s cerebral, wiser-than-thou voice dominates, in much the same way A directs the lives of these teens for 24 hours. Ages 12–up. Agent: Bill Clegg, William Morris Endeavor. (Aug.)