Everything Everywhere Everyone: I Have Thoughts
Okay! Overall, I enjoyed Everything, Everywhere, Everyone. It had a powerful message, mostly realistic characters, and a good pacing to it. However, the plot wasn’t very original and felt quite similar to other dystopian novels.
The book follows Santee, a 16-year-old who lives on the side of the city where people are referred to as ‘threats’, and the people on the other side of the city are called ‘good citizens’. One day, a wall is built dividing the two sides and separating Santee from her family, and she is forced to protest against the government and its corrupt leader and to find any way to reunite with her family.
The plot felt quite unoriginal. The main story of a dystopian novel is pretty much a main character fighting against the corrupt government to stop inequality and save their loved ones. This book was… pretty much exactly that?? Although, an element that felt much more realistic was that Santee didn’t simply fight and destroy the government and their leader but protested by using her voice and words. The book wasn’t paced too fast or too slow, and there was a very good balance of action scenes and character development scenes.
The character of Santee felt quite believable, but I think could have been developed a bit more. I would have liked some more flashback scenes about her childhood and her relationship with her dad, and a more in-depth explanation of her relation to her dad being sent to prison. I also felt like a few of her actions were quite unrealistic. For example, (small spoiler alert) it felt very unrealistic for her to, despite Z’s family welcoming her in and treating her like a family member, give information to someone working for the government just to gain information about her father? I understand wanting to know about her father and his whereabouts but disclosing information about someone who had shown you nothing but kindness didn’t make sense to me.
Another thing that annoyed me was the complete insta-love between Santee and Z. It progressed much too quickly to seem realistic, and it felt wrong that Santee was making time for a relationship with Z when people were suffering due to the corrupt government. I can’t fault Z’s character, but I wish it had been developed a bit more.
I really liked Mila’s character! I felt her character was very believable and she was a ray of sunshine throughout the book. I just wish she had had more scenes! And (spoiler alert) I was really taken by surprise and upset by her death. It made me angry that there was so much injustice happening, but I found it was so powerful how many people began to see just how ‘evil’ the Unit and the government were after people lost their lives protesting.
I couldn’t really connect with Tash’s character because I felt it didn’t seem natural that after bullying Santee, she would suddenly become friends with her again and change her views about the ‘threats’ living on Santee’s side of the city. I think Peter’s character was a very important addition to the book because it showed that not all of the Unit Officers were heartless and that many of them weren’t completely on board with the principles of the government. I really loved the theme of family throughout the book, and how Santee eventually felt like part of Z’s family.
I thought the ending was… very powerful. The last lines were very hard-hitting, and I think it conveyed the very important message that the perfect idealistic ending that we were hoping for did not come true. And I think that’s what made the book seem more realistic to me, because it explained that we will have to keep fighting for justice in this world and that things won’t be easily changed.
All in all, this was a good book that included some very important themes about society, prejudice and standing up for what you believe in, I just felt like it was a bit similar to other dystopian novels I have read. 🙂
(P.S. I’m so sorry I forgot to upload this until now eeeeeek)