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Friday, October 2, 2015

Another Day: A Novel

A few years back I posted on David Levithan's Every Day, the story of a person who wakes up in a different body everyday. It doesn't bother him until he meets Rhiannon, the girlfriend of one of his bodies. Another Day is Rhiannon's story. 

Rhiannon's life is just what it is. She's fine, really. Her boyfriend, Justin, is difficult and frustrating and won't give her what she wants, but she's fine, really. Her parents are distant and she's not close with her sister, but she's fine, really. Moving right along, until the one day that Justin becomes the boyfriend she's always wanted him to be -- loving, caring, attentive. Except he goes back to his normal self the next day. Then other things start happening -- she starts meeting new people, and one day, one of those people contacts her to let her in on a very big secret, one that is almost unbelievable. One that will change her life.

I fell hard for this book, like a ton of bricks. I found myself falling into Rhiannon's life like I knew her. The thing is -- maybe at one point I did. I also dealt with depression in high school, and that lack of just a smidgen of self worth that is so desperately needed to say, "You can't treat me this way." She is a girl that is so real, and so easy to relate to, that I even see her desperation for Justin in grown women who should know better. That fear that if he leaves, this may be the end for her. You and I and everyone else all know that just isn't true, but her addiction to Justin is so strong and forceful that she can't walk away, even when it's for her own sanity. How real is that? (Very.)

It was also so very amazing to watch this story unfold from another perspective. I am unsure if I would even answer A's emails if I were Rhiannon because the story would just be so unbelievable. That's the thing with Levithan's writing though. It's completely not realistic, but is it? Is this idea of a being that wakes up each day in a different body really that far fetched? Of course, it entirely depends on what you believe about souls and people and what makes humans humans, but it's an interesting concept to think on. I found it lovely and beautiful how Rhiannon was willing to take a leap of faith with A and open herself up to someone that is in a different form everyday. The scene where she helps A get help for a suicidal person is quite moving and honest.

This was a lovely companion piece to Levithan's first novel, and the undercurrent of Levithan's work on gender and sexuality make for a beautiful book that asks big questions: "What if?" "What do I really believe about myself and others?" "What do I really believe about love?" There is a great interview with him from Mashable, and the book is well worth the read.

For purchase below.

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