6 January 2014

Every You, Every Me: Review

Every You, Every Me by David Levithan

Last year, I read Everyday by David Levithan and became an instant fan. He is what I aspire to be as a writer - unique, original, intelligent, thought-provoking... I am also very much inspired by his writing process.

Will Grayson, Will Grayson, co-authored with John Green (another of my favorite authors - read ALL his books if you haven't yet!), was penned by each author assuming a voice of one of the two protagonists. Each was a 'Will Grayson', and they wrote alternating chapters that together, compromise a wonderfully crafted, realistic depiction of teenage life that appeals to us all. Every You, Every Me does not disappoint in both the way it was written and the final outcome.

Inspired by a photograph seen pinned to a fridge at the home of Jonathan Farmer, Levithan set out to write a psychological thriller inspired by photographs. Farmer sent Levithan images upon which the next part of the novel was constructed. Farmer never knew what Levithan was writing, and Levithan didn't know what image was coming next. The result is intriguing; a mysterious psychological thriller interspersed with haunting photographs.
Ariel, Every You, Every Me
The novel is told from the point of view of Evan, a tortured boy suffering the loss of a best friend. Much of the text is crossed out - leaving the reader to puzzle through the plot as Evan puzzles through the memories of his friendship. Are these representative of the hole left in his life, the words left unsaid? Are these sections thoughts manifest yet never vocalised? Are these words spoken but needing to be re-swallowed and taken back? Do they represent the many different sides that comprise a person?

Levithan himself describes the book as "a very strange, somewhat dark, portrait of a boy on the verge of a complete breakdown"; Every You, Every Me is a one-of-a-kind novel from a one-of-a-kind author.