Saturday, September 12, 2015
Book Review: Another Day by David Levithan
Author: David Levithan
Enjoyment Rating: ***
Source: Digital Copy
Content Alert: teen sex, swearing
In David Levithan's novel Every Day, a teenager, A, wakes up every day in the body of a different person. Sometimes it's a girl, and sometimes it's a boy. Sometimes their life is amazing and sometimes it's the pits. A's life has always been like this, and when he (she?) meets Rhiannon, life changes. A wants to stay in one place, to continue relationships beyond a single day. Every Day is a pretty darn fantastic experiment, and Levithan leaves readers with a fabulous cliffhanger.
So I expected a lot of Another Day. I expected that it would address the cliffhanger. I expected that it would advance the narrative. It doesn't do any of these things. Instead, it rehashes the entire story, this time from Rhiannon's perspective. Although I really liked Every Day, my main criticism of the novel at the time was that it felt a little too self-consciously experimental, like Levithan was prioritizing the "look what I can do" factor instead of focusing on storytelling. And I feel pretty let down by Another Day. I have a short attention span for books in series, and this one lost me. What's the good of a second novel if it doesn't get into the messy middle and advance the story towards the conclusion. While it was interesting to look at things from Rhiannon's perspective, this book felt a little more like one of those books where we get Twilight from Edward's perspective or 50 Shades of Grey from Christian's perspective. In other words, more of a piece geared toward hard-core fans, and I'm not sure the first book merits that all on its own.