Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Part-Time Buffy • Every Other Day

Every Other Day book cover
Every Other Day by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
Publisher: Egmont USA
Publication Date: December 27, 2011
Source/Format: Netgalley || e-galley
[I received this book from the publisher. This in no way affects my review.]

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. 


With Every Other Day, Ms. Barnes has written a novel that differs from the YA novels that I usually read in that the focus is not on a relationship between a male and a female protagonist, nor is it a male-female tag team sort of thing - rather, it focuses on this one female, her abilities and her discovery of who (or what) she is.

Kali D'Angelo, our heroine (who would probably consider herself an anti-heroine), is a character that I loved. Even though she wonders and questions who she is, she's never really challenged the fact that she's born to hunt and kill preternatural creatures; she literally goes out, gets bloodied up and then wakes up the next day almost as good as new. In fact, one of the central parts of this novel is her unexpected countdowns when she changes from one form (human) to the next (hunter). The way she's written is really as a hunter - she's intelligent, thinks quick on her feet and knows a whole lot about the preternatural creatures she faces.

Thought the focus was mainly on Kali, it was fun to see how she started out as a loner but then ended up becoming friends/allies with an unexpected pair - Skylar Hayden and Bethany Davis. Skylar Hayden is the pronounced "school slut" and that's how she introduces herself to Kali. Right away, after seeing how she made light of the nickname bestowed upon her and chose to focus on the good things in life, I loved her. And it amused me when she started demonstrating her psychic abilities in the story. Her character was quirky, funny and instantly stood out for me. Bethany Davis starts out as a typical popular cheerleader type, but eventually we see that even she has her secrets. My heart went out to her at some point; I've got so much affection for people who can withstand crazy trauma and horrible betrayals like that. Plus, she warmed up towards Skylar and Kali and cared a lot about them in the end, which is definitely a plus in her favor.

Apart from these three, only two more characters really stood out to me - Kali's dad and Kali's mom. Both were interesting to me because I got a chance to see how they felt about Kali's second form and how they felt about Kali herself. It's always been interesting for me to observe parent-child relationships in stories, and it was no different in this case.

Every Other Day's plot completely surprised me. Half the things that I was expecting to happen didn't, and things that I wasn't even thinking about did instead. I think that's what I loved best about the book - that I never knew what would happen next and when something did, it'd always be a bit of a surprise (like that major twist that had me gasping out loud). Books that leave me in suspense (or take a turn for the unexpected) are always great, in my opinion. Every Other Day ends on a strong note, but also leaves room for a sequel in the future. And yes, I would love to read it and find out what happens to Kali and her friends!

4 comments:

  1. I think that's what made it interesting to me. Instead of exploring just the romance, it focused on Kali and her self-discovery and growth. I hope you enjoy it!

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  2. I've seen this book pop up a lot recently so I'm excited to dive into it. I like that you mention how much it focuses on Kali's personal journey -- that's always good to hear.

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  3. I liked it and thought it was different. Great review!

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  4. groovy /gr8 covr tnx 4 sharing you're thoughts

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