Last Updated on October 30, 2019, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 1309
A is the narrator and main character of Every Day. Every day, A—who has no gender—wakes up in the body of a different person, unaware of who the person will be, what their life will be like, or what they will face during that day. All A knows is that the person will be the same age as them and geographically close to the last person they inhabited. To cope, A has a method of getting through the day: most of the time, they simply try to create as few problems as possible and leave the life they are visiting undisturbed. A is able to access the person's memories to help them navigate that person's life.
A has never known why they don't have their own body or why they move from body to body each day, nor have they ever had a choice about who they wake up as. They are compassionate after many years of living in different bodies and respectful of the people whose bodies they inhabit for a day. When A meets Rhiannon while in the body of her boyfriend, it's the second time A falls in love—and the first time they fight to have a real life.
A recognizes that their relationship with Rhiannon isn't healthy for her. Neither of them is able to know who or where A will be from day to day or if Rhiannon will be attracted to the body A inhabits. The situation is awkward and upsetting, and it makes it difficult for their burgeoning romance to succeed.
When A finally has the chance to remain in one body and be with Rhiannon, their innate goodness and selflessness shine through: they refuse to take over someone else's life and instead set Rhiannon up for a happier relationship with Alexander, a boy whose body A inhabits for a day. A then chooses to travel as far away as possible from Rhiannon so that they will begin to wake up in bodies that aren't as close to her.
At the end of the novel, A is faced with the chance to take the life they want, but they decide to stick to their principles—even though it means continuing to move from one body to the next and leaving Rhiannon behind. The choice is a confirmation of the values A has lived with throughout their life.
Rhiannon is the girlfriend of a boy named Justin, whose body A inhabits at the beginning of the novel. When A first meets Rhiannon, they notice that she is both happy and unhappy to see Justin, behaving nervously yet clearly adoring him. She draws cities on her shoes, and A finds her brave and sad; they can tell that Justin treats her poorly. Rhiannon asks A, as Justin, to take her to the ocean.
A falls in love with Rhiannon and communicates with her via email in their different forms each day. When they finally meet again, A confesses the truth about their life to Rhiannon. They attempt to be together, but Rhiannon stays with Justin until Justin attacks A in Michael's body. Even after she and Justin break up, Rhiannon says the two of them are still attached and that it will take years before she can be free of Justin.
Rhiannon is kind and intelligent but unable to cope with the difficulties that come with dating A, confessing she can't love every person A inhabits equally. Their relationship is unstable and makes her feel awkward and unhappy, and she needs time to process her break-up with Justin. Rhiannon also has a troubled relationship with her father and misses her sister, who no longer calls home. For awhile, Rhiannon stops seeing A, and while they eventually resume their relationship, A ultimately decides that Rhiannon needs to be in a stable relationship with a normal person.
Rhiannon doesn't believe she deserves love and respect until A shows her what a caring relationship looks like, and the novel's ending suggests the sadness that initially surrounds her may dissipate with time.
Justin is Rhiannon's boyfriend; A first inhabits his body on day 5,449. Justin is messy, prefers video games to books, and...
(The entire section contains 1309 words.)
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