Everywhere Everything Everyone

Katy Warner

Everywhere Everything Everyone
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Everywhere Everything Everyone

Katy Warner

Even though she lives on the wrong side of town, 16-year-old Santee believes her world is like ours: that running late for curfew will only get you grounded, and that the government tries to keep its good citizens safe and secure. Until one night, everything changes.   

On her way home from school, Santee takes a detour to the outskirts of town with a boy that she likes - and then finds herself stranded overnight when his car breaks down. When she’s finally able to get a lift towards home the next morning, Santee discovers that everything has changed. A ‘safety border’ - a wall - has gone up around her part of town, imprisoning her family and trapping her on the outside…   

With its subtle familiarity and a tender, defiant teen romance at its core, Katy Warner’s powerful debut novel is about the importance of hope and standing up for what you believe in.    From small cracks, big cracks grow.

Review

Melbourne local Katy Warner is a playwright and writer with many awards already under her belt for both her short fiction and plays. Her debut YA novel Everywhere Everything Everyone is an exciting continuation of this talent.

The story begins with a glimpse into Santee’s ‘normal’ life. She’s sixteen and lives in a small apartment with her mother and sister. Initially it seems that the worst thing that could happen to her is to be grounded for missing curfew, or perhaps the boy she likes at school won’t fancy her back, but as the view of her world expands we discover that there is so much more to her situation. Her father is in prison for protesting – he dared to speak out. Santee is ostracised at school because of this, and her family refuse to mention him because they fear the neighbours or someone else may be listening.

A sinister feeling creeps in and explodes when Santee finds herself in the wrong place at the wrong time on the wrong side of the new ‘safety border’ (or wall) that appears overnight, dividing the city she calls home and separating Santee from her family. On one side of this wall you are considered a ‘threat’, but which side is it?

Everywhere Everything Everyone examines the power of freedom and the precariousness of control, both in civilisation and in the everyday lives of individuals. There are unsettling echoes of contemporary issues of race, class and threatened social liberties. It is an influential first novel from a grand new voice.


Claire Atherfold is the children’s book buyer at Readings State Library.

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