Summary and book reviews of Every Day by David Levithan

Every Day

by David Levithan

Every Day by David Levithan X
Every Day by David Levithan
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  • First Published:
    Aug 2012, 336 pages
    Paperback:
    Sep 2013, 336 pages

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Book Reviewed by:
Norah Piehl
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About this Book

Book Summary

In his New York Times bestselling novel, David Levithan introduces readers to what Entertainment Weekly calls a "wise, wildly unique" love story about A, a teen who wakes up every morning in a different body, living a different life.

Every day a different body. Every day a different life. Every day in love with the same girl.

Every morning, A wakes in a different person’s body, a different person’s life. 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 to be with - day in, day out, day after day.

With his new novel, David Levithan has pushed himself to new creative heights. He has written a captivating story that will fascinate readers as they begin to comprehend the complexities of life and love in A’s world, as A and Rhiannon seek to discover if you can truly love someone who is destined to change every day.

Excerpt
Every Day

Day 5994

I wake up.

Immediately I have to figure out who I am. It's not just the body--opening my eyes and discovering whether the skin on my arm is light or dark, whether my hair is long or short, whether I'm fat or thin, boy or girl, scarred or smooth. The body is the easiest thing to adjust to, if you're used to waking up in a new one each morning. It's the life, the context of the body, that can be hard to grasp.

Every day I am someone else. I am myself--I know I am myself--but I am also someone else.

It has always been like this.

The information is there. I wake up, open my eyes, understand that it is a new morning, a new place. The biography kicks in, a welcome gift from the not?me part of the mind. Today I am Justin. Somehow I know this--my name is Justin--and at the same time I know that I'm not really Justin, I'm only borrowing his life for a day. I look around and know that this is his room. This is his home. The ...

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Reviews

BookBrowse Review

BookBrowse

Although the premise of Levithan's novel might seem far-fetched, the concept is a deeply provocative starting point from which to explore a wide variety of topics and themes...Every Day also gets at the heart of what it means to be human and what it means to love. Both are, at best, elusive and, at worst, impossible for A...The profound loneliness of A's life - the lack of genuine connection, and the absence of the opportunity to know someone over time and have him know you – is, at times, nearly unbearable.   (Reviewed by Norah Piehl).

Full Review (699 words).

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Media Reviews

New York Times Book Review
It demonstrates Levithan's talent for empathy, which is paired in the best parts of the book with a persuasive optimism about the odds for happiness and for true love.

Entertainment Weekly
Rich in wisdom and wit...Levithan keeps the pages turning not only with ingenious twists on his central conceit but with A's hard-earned pieces of wisdom about identity, isolation, and love. Every Day has the power to teach a bully empathy by answering an essential question: What's it like to be you and not me — even if it's just for one day?

Los Angeles Times
It's the rare book that challenges gender presumptions in a way that's as entertaining as it is unexpected and, perhaps most important, that's relatable to teens who may not think they need sensitivity training when it comes to sexual orientation and the nature of true love. ‘Every Day' is precisely such a book...A story that is always alluring, oftentimes humorous and much like love itself — splendorous.

Publishers Weekly
[T]he story unfolds smoothly (the regular shifts between bodies give the novel a natural momentum), but it’s also less ambitious.

Booklist
Starred Review. Levithan has created an irresistible premise that is sure to captivate readers…[Every Day] is a study in style, an exercise in imagination, and an opportunity for readers themselves to occupy another life: that of A, himself.

Kirkus Reviews
Starred Review. An awe-inspiring, thought-provoking reminder that love reaches beyond physical appearances or gender. Ages 14+.

School Library Journal
Starred Review. [E}very step of the narrative feels real and will elicit a strong emotional response from readers and offer them plenty of fodder for speculation, especially regarding the nature of love.

Reader Reviews

Hunter Jackson

This excerpt
It was simply phenomenal! I simply delight in novels like this, even if it WAS an excerpt.

Eli

One of the best
I could not stop reading this, every chapter had me wanting to read the next. I very very highly recommend this.

Anthony

Awe-inspiring
The book shows what it is to be human, and how love can go beyond physical appearances. As a young adult it made me realize true love is never impossible.

Febe

Mush vs Gosh.
The book was deep. Luckily I'm not shallow. It,s got a huge amount of mush. I was only able to endure it because the mush was matched by its gosh. It had a semi-expected twist. All in all it is worth reading. If you liked this one you should also ...   Read More

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Beyond the Book

Body Swap Fiction for Younger Readers

David Levithan might take an unusually philosophical approach to the idea of occupying someone else's body in Every Day, but he's hardly the first person to explore it in fiction. Here are just a few other great examples, which run the gamut from light-hearted to more serious:

The classic book in the "body swap" genre is, of course, Freaky Friday by Mary Rodgers.Freaky Friday Originally published in 1972, the humorous story imagines what would happen if eternally bickering teenage daughter Annabelle Andrews switched bodies with her mother. The book has been adapted for the screen several times, and also sparked several sequels, including Summer Switch, in which Annabelle's younger brother switches bodies with their high-powered executive father.

...

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