Book Review: Every Other Day
Author: Jennifer Lynn Barnes
Publish Date: December 2011
Publisher: Edgmont USA
Number of Pages: 336
Audience: YA (Ages 13 and up)
Source: Provided by Publisher
Every other day, Kali D'Angelo is a normal sixteen-year-old girl. She goes to public high school. She attends pep rallies. She's human.
And then every day in between . . . She's something else entirely.
Though she still looks like herself, every twenty-four hours predatory instincts take over and Kali becomes a feared demon-hunter with the undeniable urge to hunt, trap, and kill zombies, hellhounds, and other supernatural creatures. Kali has no idea why she is the way she is, but she gives in to instinct anyway. Even though the government considers it environmental terrorism.
When Kali notices a mark on the lower back of a popular girl at school, she knows instantly that the girl is marked for death by one of these creatures. Kali has twenty-four hours to save her and, unfortunately, she'll have to do it as a human. With the help of a few new friends, Kali takes a risk that her human body might not survive and learns the secrets of her mysterious condition in the process.
Kali begins her story by telling us how isolated she feels. I have to admit I was not overly enthused by the way the story started. She appeared to be an emotional teen with a secret to keep. That feeling lasted all of about 10 pages and then I was sucked into the world that Kali has to live in every other day.
Kali is independent, tough and a fabulous protagonist. She takes care of herself and doesn’t let the lack of a mother get in her way. She also doesn’t see her father as a respectable adult. She realizes he has done the best he could to raise her and she accepts his shortcomings. Throughout the book, she learns more and more about her father and has to come to terms with those revelations as well.
I liked the mystery behind the changes she was experiencing every other day. It was not clear what she right away and took a lot of delving into the details. Little hints were placed throughout the story and the end result was a surprise. I hadn’t put all the pieces together to come up with her classification. My mind had gone several other directions. I won’t reveal it here. You need to read to find out.
I loved the way the author brought in details from mythology. The types of monsters she encounters are varied and each present their own challenge, including the monster she meets in human form. She is overwhelmed by the presence of the chupacabra in her body and the parasite takes on its own personality. She learns to accept it and work with it rather than against it, but she meets Zev in the process and he opens another realm of possibilities and problems for her.
Kali and her unlikely band of heroes, are a lot of fun to read about and get to know. Bethany, the reluctant friend; Skylar, the friend with an ability no one wants to believe; and Elliot, tied to the three girls whether he likes it or not. Learning to let people into her life is a struggle for Kali and she has to learn the hard way.
I loved that I wasn’t sure what Kali was throughout the book and it took letting Zev into her head and heart for her to figure it out. I loved that Zev had his own issues and ultimately had to struggle to gain control over his mind.