Katy Warner, Everywhere, Everything, Everyone, Hardie Grant Egmont, August 2019, 320pp, RRP $19.99 (pbk), ISBN 9781760504618
Everywhere, Everything, Everyone is the debut YA novel of Melbourne based playwright and short story writer Katy Warner.
A new and corrupt government is making big changes to sixteen year old Santee Quinn’s world. There are new rules every day, curfews and serious consequences for those who disobey. Nobody dares speak out against the regime, for if they do, they disappear, just like Santee’s father. With the news reporting constant (and as Santee starts to realise, probably non existent) threats to the safety of ordinary citizens, neighbours and friends are soon turned against each other. And then a wall goes up, dividing the city in two and separating Santee from her mother and sister.
I wasn’t sure what to expect from a children’s story that had been compared to Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale but Katy Warner has created a fast paced and very realistic story of corruption and the power of resistance for teen audiences. There is also a healthy dose of romance thrown in. Her messages are clear and timely: Stand up for what you believe in- there is always hope. And never allow fear mongering and ignorance to dampen your capacity for compassion.
Highly recommended for young adults aged 12+
Reviewed by Deborah Kelly