I really liked this novel.
If a friend asked me to give an example of a good novel, this would be it.
The subject is "everyday" in the sense that you could imagine that, yes, such a person and the people he relates to could really exist. Also the events, problems, and conflicts that his particular situation throws up are "real life", in that you think with, and suffer with, and hope and dream with the main character (it is about an orthodox Jew who, as he is growing up, tries to carve out a way of life for himself which is at odds with his background).
All the important characters are believable. They all have their faults as well as their good points, but what comes across is that the author has treated them with respect, and made them human.
As the story unfolds, there is a movement towards a final ending, confrontation, or perhaps resolution if you will. What goes before - the preceding events - are material to what happens at the end. And so, I disagree about the writing being repetitious. I think the different parts of the story balance each other well. In fact, it is a finely crafted story, where each bit contributes to the whole - and I don't think you can improve on it by editing out "repetitions". Perhaps you could say that the story has been crafted with as much care, as Asher Lev invested in his paintings.