Two summers ago during a heat wave, I was having lunch with David Levithan at what would become one of my fave restaurants. David has a knack for knowing good places like that. He was telling me about an idea he had for a new book. It was about a soul named A who wakes up in a different body every day. A doesn’t know why this happens. It’s the only reality A has ever known.
David said that he hoped no one else would have the same idea and write about it before he did. I was like, “Um…yeah. I think you’re good.” See, David Levithan doesn’t understand how unique his ideas are. He doesn’t understand that even if someone else did write a story about being in a different body every day, it wouldn’t even touch the brilliance of his.
Every Day rocked my world. Not only because the idea was so eccentric. Not only because the writing is so beautiful. This book takes us out of our own physical elements and exposes us to the enormity beyond. It makes us question what really matters. It is, in a word, a revelation.
I was very fortunate to attend the pub day event for Every Day. In a stroke of supreme non-coincidence, pub day also happened to be David’s 40th birthday. He read excerpts from things he’d written when he was 10, 20, 30, and then he read from Every Day. The mega reading was affirmation of the obvious: David Levithan is, and always has been, an extremely gifted writer. And I have to say it gave me a little thrill when he took out a Garfield folder that was holding his 10-year-old writing and artwork. I had the same folder set! Plus a Garfield garbage can! Such a super fun throwback moment.
David and I grew up close to each other in New Jersey. Our ages are less than a year apart. In Every Day, A wakes up in a different person’s body not too far away from the previous person. The people are always the same age as A. Makes me wonder if we knew each other back then, in some strange way I couldn’t quite put my finger on at the time…