Published by HarperTeen
Published on June 3rd 2014
Genres: Contemporary, Friendship, Realistic FIction, Romance, Young Adult
John Green's The Fault in Our Stars meets Rainbow Rowell's Eleanor & Park in this beautifully written, incredibly honest, and emotionally poignant novel. Cammie McGovern's insightful young adult debut is a heartfelt and heartbreaking story about how we can all feel lost until we find someone who loves us because of our faults, not in spite of them.
Born with cerebral palsy, Amy can't walk without a walker, talk without a voice box, or even fully control her facial expressions. Plagued by obsessive-compulsive disorder, Matthew is consumed with repeated thoughts, neurotic rituals, and crippling fear. Both in desperate need of someone to help them reach out to the world, Amy and Matthew are more alike than either ever realized.
When Amy decides to hire student aides to help her in her senior year at Coral Hills High School, these two teens are thrust into each other's lives. As they begin to spend time with each other, what started as a blossoming friendship eventually grows into something neither expected.
Sometimes feeling nervous just means you’re having a lot of feelings all at once.
After a long while of not finishing a whole novel, I decided to crack Say What You Will by Cammie McGovern open and see what this book is all about. To be honest, the first few chapters did have me reading it continuously, it got me curious as to where this story will lead me, however, there were chapters that felt like fillers. The story is told in third person, and I usually have issues with this kind of writing, but it was bearable.
Amy and Matthew are both interesting individuals. Separately, they seem dull, but when they’re together, they’re golden. Amy thought that she was living a happy life even though she’s been struggling with Cerebral Palsy all her life, but when she had an encounter with Matthew, she realized that she was missing out on a lot of things. On the other hand, Matthew is dealing with his own issues. It was Amy who made him face the reality of his psychosis.
Their friendship, although it had its ups and downs, is admirable. Amy tends to push Matthew into trying out things that he wouldn’t normally dare do, while Matthew makes Amy feel things that she hadn’t felt before. For the first time in Amy’s life, she had a real friend. As their relationship progresses, they found themselves in a situation where they both wanted to give in and move forward into a boyfriend-girlfriend relationship, but their circumstances always gets in the way. I found myself yelling at the book, Just say it already. Just say it! But heck, I had to read more to find out where this leads to.
There were issues with Amy’s mother that bothered me. I guess, I could never understand how her over-protectiveness is too overwhelming. But there was a point in the book where she said that you would always think that they (child) is still three pounds. My parents were protective of us, but not to the point where they controlled every aspect of our lives, so I guess, there’s a part about her parents that is to blame for Amy’s problems.
As for the romantic aspect in the book, there were moments where I wanted to swoon over the situation, but I had a problem with the way it was written. If it weren’t for this being a third-person-perspective novel, I would’ve felt what the characters were trying to convey during those moments. It was hard to grasp Matthew’s anxiety over his own disorder, and I couldn’t feel Amy’s longing for a friend when she was in college.
All those things aside, I think that this book have so much promise. It allowed me to understand what it is like to deal with people like Amy and Matthew. Somehow it teaches you about compassion towards other people. It inspires you to stop and listen to people who want to tell their stories. #
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