Book Review: Say What You Will by Cammie McGovern

What the book is about: 

Amy and Matthew are average high school students. Except Amy has cerebral palsy. And Matthew is paid to hang out with her once every four days at school. Amy has always been around adults and no one tells her the truth. Matthew has always been a loner, but honesty in one class gets back to Amy and she asks him to apply to help her. He does, gets the job, and senior year ends up not being like either of them ever expected.

What I liked: 

The major characters were well thought out and well fleshed out. The writing is beautiful and flows very easily. It was easy for me to get lost in this book. I liked that while the disorders in the book were part of the story, they weren’t THE STORY.

What I didn’t like: 

Without giving away TOO much of the story, the ending was disappointing to me. I guess I wished for more for both of them and the final twist was a bit ‘meh’ for me. A bit cliche, I suppose. The story lost me at that point and I just had to finish, but I didn’t enjoy it as much as I had enjoyed the rest of the book.

Her parents were surprising in certain ways and their blind trust in certain kids and rigid mistrust of others rang untrue to me. I suppose that probably set up the somewhat disappointing ending for me. I just struggled with mom a bit and felt that she was written a little too on the extreme side – extreme control, extreme trust, extreme mistrust, extreme judgment. She could have come a few paces to the middle and that would have sat better with me. 

Overall thoughts and opinions: 

I came across this book doing research for a children’s story I’ve written and am looking into getting published. My MC has mild CP, so I’ve been trying to get my hands on as many CP/disability books as I can. This one, overall, did not disappoint me. I felt the MCs behaved exactly like teenagers would, and so their lack of communication didn’t really surprise me.

The growth of both MCs in the story was well done. I liked the push and pull of their growing up, of their progress. That part felt very authentic to me and it was really well done.

Overall, I’d give this book four stars.

4 star rating

Learn more about the book and the author.