If you like: Thirteen Reasons Why * Placebo * mental illness
In Every You, Every Me, Evan is living in the void left by his departed friend, Ariel. He is already struggling when he begins to receive mysterious pictures of one of his last afternoons with her. He begins to wonder if she has come back to torture him. He is not alone, however, and is joined in the mystery by Ariel’s ex-boyfriend, Jack. The pictures push Evan to the brink, and he must accept the past and forgive himself before it destroys him.
Every You, Every Me is an earnest representation of grief. It is clear from the start that Evan is in a very dark place. It can be hard to admit the pain and confusion that persists long after a friend has gone. Everyone copes at their own speed, which can leave those who linger with it to feel separated and alone. Evan is unable to connect with anyone. He exists in that awkward place of needing help, but being completely unable to accept it. His struggles to trust himself and his own judgement are captivating.
You will find Every You, Every Me difficult to put down. Each page begs you to read just one more. The unconventional thought process conveyed throughout the text expresses so much without being overpowering. Some readers might even see their own inner monologues mirror it perfectly. Though it is a teen book, the experiences are relatable at any age. Many will find they have also wondered when they should seek help, or intervene when a friend needs it. Levithan implores us to ask ourselves who we really are. People tend to have adaptive personalities -- different versions of the self for different social situations. Does this mean one person or group knows us better than another, or do they just know us differently? It is only when a person is absent that their multifaceted existence begins to show. If you are in a dark place and feeling alone, this is a great book to read to help you get through it. There is always a choice.
If you are haunted by your past, read Every You, Every Me.
Levithan, David. Every You, Every Me. New York: Random House, Inc., 2011. Kindle Edition.