In Everything and Nothing, Ava touches on quite literally every aspect of her last few years as a teenager. Her experiences are laced with feelings ranging from euphoria, nerves, self-deprecation, and acceptance of mental illness through personification. She writes about a fondness for cyber love and briefly introduces the reader to her infatuation with a girl named Kochi. Highlighted in the light read are heavy subjects such as the importance of energy, healing intuition, acting on positive thoughts, and enabling daydreams to last for hours.
As you can tell, the cover of this book is very minimalist. You have to look to the spine for the title. The contents of this 100ish-paged paperback are just as scant and gentle. This makes it approachable.
I enjoyed this creative little book that reads like flash fiction. But it is not fiction. Font is played with, warped, found in the margins. It feels like poetry. The book itself is an exploration of making a book:
“Now, I love videography and cinematography and shit, but no, I don’t even have Final Cut Pro (I can’t afford it right now, I need to buy an ISBN first).”
Indeed, to make a book all you really need are some thoughts and an ISBN. This is how books can be. I much prefer such honesty to the ghostwritten crap celebrities and publishers produce for the typical memoir. I loved the realness. There was a particular joy in getting to look into someone else’s life and train of thought. It reminded me of my own teenage years and sometimes I just wanted to hug her. Like a diary, Ceccotti will be able to look back on this when she’s older and remember her past self.
Unlike a diary, however, this snapshot of her life is for an audience–self-conscious as much as much as her book is self-aware. The book knows it is a book–telling the reader at times to be “aware, I’m gonna make this paragraph as fast as her Adidas-clad feet were.” You see the book struggle to form itself, but that is half of the fun. At times I was left feeling like this girl needs a blog, but that is unfair to her dabbling. She’s playing with medium and I probably wouldn’t read a blog like this. I would, however, read a book. Clearly.
Again, it was fun to have something so simple to read–almost like taking a deep breath or recalling a memory. I didn’t have to think too hard or work too hard. I love that this is what some books can be.
I received this book in exchange for an honest review. Read my review policy in the tabs above.