I received this book for free from Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
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.
Say What you Will spotlights disabled characters and that’s something I was looking forward to reading in this one. I love the fact that we get to see a different perspective of someone with cerebral palsy and another with an obsessive compulsion disorder. Both points of views let the readers in on a glimpse of what it’s like to live as someone who has a disability. Both refreshing and unique, I recommend this one for its sheer character development.
Unfortunately, I was looking for a huge story-line. It’s literally day to day interactions and I solemnly grew bored. Even if it meant for one of them achieve their goals like graduating to go off to college. But alas, I couldn’t find a story that made it worth sticking to. I read 85% of the e-ARC, only to skim the rest of the book because I felt like it was extremely long. I did care what happened to them which is why I didn’t just DNF the entire thing.
As for the characters, I liked reading from their point of views. As for Amy I didn’t like her at all. Amy is extremely bossy but she masks it with good intentions. She took Matthew’s wonderful friendship for granted at EVERY chance she could get. I found her to be extremely selfish who would do anything to get what she wanted, eventually even cheating on someone she claims to love? Um no. I eventually didn’t really care what she did because I knew I couldn’t condone how she treated Matthew. Also, Amy’s mom is insanely overprotective and yes I understand that she’s different from other children, but how will she learn to be independent and grow up if she doesn’t have her parents there 24-7? I was happy when she finally went off on her own. Matthew on the other hand had a thought process that I couldn’t understand, but mostly I just thought he was extremely paranoid until he started to count and do OCD like actions. Even though he had this disorder, and Amy tried to help him, I thought her way was too forward. It felt like she just pushed him into the deep end, and he learned how to swim on his own. He was just so fond of Amy, and he treated her so nicely, even when she starts to get mad at him. I couldn’t understand why he didn’t see that either. I did love how incredible close they got, how their friendship blossomed, but I didn’t see the romance at all.
Overall, I would definitely give this one a try if you want to read more about characters with disabilities, but if you’re looking for a cute love story, tr to find it somewhere else. It’s more a friendship than anything.