Thursday, March 22, 2012

Every You, Every Me Review

Author: David Levithan
Release Date: September 13, 2011
Publisher: Knopf
Most appropriate for ages: 12+
How I got it: Library 
In this high school-set psychological tale, a tormented teen named Evan starts to discover a series of unnerving photographs—some of which feature him. Someone is stalking him . . . messing with him . . . threatening him. Worse, ever since his best friend Ariel has been gone, he's been unable to sleep, spending night after night torturing himself for his role in her absence. And as crazy as it sounds, Evan's starting to believe it's Ariel that's behind all of this, punishing him. But the more Evan starts to unravel the mystery, the more his paranoia and insomnia amplify, and the more he starts to unravel himself. Creatively told with black-and-white photos interspersed between the text so the reader can see the photos that are so unnerving to Evan, Every You, Every Me is a one-of-a-kind departure from a one-of-a-kind author.
This is technically not my first Levithan book since I read Nick and Nora's Infinite Playlist about 3 years ago but I barely remember it and probably didn't appreciate it, so let's just say that I'm a Levithan newbie. And what I found was good with potential to be great.

Levithan's writing has a very poetic feel to it, and it just draws you in immediately. Well, immediately after you get used to the strike-throughs. To be honest, if the writing in Every You, Every Me had been mediocre, this book would've been utter crap. So yay for good writing.

But when I take away the writing I was so awed by, I'm not left with much. Each of the characters felt very one-dimensional to me. They're completely defined by the emotions they're feeling in the brief frame of time we see them. This very well could have been Levithan's intention, but it bugged me because I was nowhere near as connected to these characters as I would could should have been. The story itself was also hard to connect to and kind of underwhelming, as well as anti-climatic.

And okay, I know I'm going to sound like a toddler when I say this, but: I love books with pictures. Granted, this is the first one I've read, but I loved each of the photos and how they were involved in the story.

If you're a person who's looking for a character-driven novel, I wouldn't recommend Every You, Every Me. BUT if you're looking for a unique way to tell a story and some awesome writing, you can't miss this. I know I'll be looking out for other Levithan novels.

Plot: Interesting and grabbing.
Characters: Kind of interesting, but mostly bland.
Writing: Really, really good.
Ending: Predictable in a way, but fitting.
Kid friendly? I believe there was some swearing, but I'm pretty sure that was it.
I would sigh and groan at anyone who tried to interrupt my reading.
Despite my disconnection to the characters, I really did enjoy Every You, Every Me. It was fast, unique, and wonderfully written.

1 comment:

  1. If you like books with pictures, you should read Miss Peregrines Home for Peculiar Children. I really enjoyed it, and the pictures are awesome.


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