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Say What You Will

3.73  ·  Rating Details  ·  11,562 Ratings  ·  1,652 Reviews
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 pa
ebook, 218 pages
Published June 3rd 2014 by HarperTeen (first published March 27th 2014)
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Marie Johnston
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Lauren "Out of My Mind" grows up...
Did anyone find it interesting that there is a moment in the story "Say What You Will," when Amy is remembering when she…more
"Out of My Mind" grows up...
Did anyone find it interesting that there is a moment in the story "Say What You Will," when Amy is remembering when she was younger and how she couldn't go to a science fair competition? She was accused of cheating on the exam. It sounded to me like a scene from the book "Out of My Mind." I am recommending this to my middle and high school kids who loved Out of My Mind when they were younger and now are reading, John Green, A.S. King, Sonya Sones, Rainbow Rowell, Jay Asher, Gayle Forman, Andrew Smith, Laurie Halse Anderson etc.(less)
To All the Boys I've Loved Before by Jenny HanIsla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie PerkinsWe Were Liars by E. LockhartSince You've Been Gone by Morgan MatsonThe Geography of You and Me by Jennifer E. Smith
2014 YA contemporary books I want to read
19th out of 139 books — 959 voters
To All the Boys I've Loved Before by Jenny HanIsla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie PerkinsWe Were Liars by E. LockhartSince You've Been Gone by Morgan MatsonWhat I Thought Was True by Huntley Fitzpatrick
2014 Contemporary YA
35th out of 268 books — 1,768 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Steph Sinclair
REBECCA FUCKING LOWMAN. Ihad to get that off my chest.

Say What You Will and I were getting along great for the most part -- yes, even despite my dislike of this narrator -- until the main character, Amy, decided she didn't give two shits about anyone but herself. Matthew goes out his way for Amy and cares for her, helps her when no one else does. And what does Amy do to repay him time and time again? She insults him, cheats on him and still expects him to show up when she is at her lowest. I jus
Whitney Atkinson
Jan 23, 2016 Whitney Atkinson rated it liked it
I was skeptical going into this book because I know absolutely nothing about cerebral palsy (and eventually I did some research in the middle of this book), so I had no clue what to expect-- if this book was about friendship, or something extra. I think it definitely proves a great point that nonverbal people can still be intelligent and witty, and as someone who's never read a book about anyone with CP before, I appreciate that this story exists. But on the other hand, I think Matthew's OCD was ...more
Jun 05, 2014 Giselle rated it liked it
Shelves: ebook, arc, contemporary
Say What You Will is a moving story about two people facing incredible challenges that fall in love and find hope in each other. It's sweet and wonderful, but also sad and frustrating at times. 3rd person is always hard for me to connect to characters in a book, and this is where my inability to love this one stems from. I also found it a tad long which is probably related to the latter. But it's a book I'm glad I read; the raw honesty of these people's harsh lives ended up being both eye openin ...more
Cait Grace
This is definitely a diverse book. And for that, I should throw confetti, right? Well, I'll throw half a handful of confetti. Because I need to talk to you peoples about it first. I am literally at a loss right now.

It's a beautiful book, don't get me wrong! I'm just not completely happy with how it dealt with a lot of topics.

And before I say anything else: trust me, the author definitely knows more on these subjects than I do. I am just...a blogger. Plus I stalked researched the author, and she
Actual rating is 4.5 stars.

In my experience, it’s a rare thing to find to find a novel that portrays physical disabilities and mental disorders as brilliantly as Say What You Will does. Nearly everything about Say What You Will is difficult to come across, with its searing emotion, sparkling wit, and beautiful writing; and I loved it all. Usually, a novel dealing with disorders or disabilities of some kind ends up feeling emotionally manipulative, but thankfully this is not the case with Say Wha
Hailey (HailsHeartsNyc)
This was a major disappointment for me. I thought it sounded great when I first read the synopsis and so I bought it right away when it first came out. It then sat on my tbr pile forever since I just kind of lost interest. Finally I decided to pick it up this weekend and wow... that was... I don't even know.

This was much too juvenile for my tastes. It was very much "HERE IS THE LESSON YOU SHOULD LEARN FROM THIS BOOK OKAY" and that was just kind of annoying.

The characters were okay although they
Stephanie (Stepping out of the Page)
Just when I thought I was maybe growing 'out' of young adult books, along came Cammie McGovern, and alongside her came Amy and Matthew, reminding me exactly why I fell in love with YA in the first place.

Amy and Matthew seems like a book that was written for me - it contains everything I love and most importantly, two imperfect protagonists who were easy to admire from the very beginning. Both characters have diagnosable 'disabilities', Amy has Cerebral Palsy and Matthew has OCD. Though both con
See more reviews at YA Midnight Reads

3.5 stars

Say What You Will is hands down, the most surprising novel I've read so farin the year of 2014. Everything about it--the characters, the twists, the romance, the plot; all of it was remarkable. I do have my qualms, but this is going down as one of the most incredibly unique novels I've read. EVER.

Cammie McGovern's novel is surprising and unique for one main reason: the characters. Amy was born with cerebral palsy and cannot walk without the aid of he
Rashika (is tired)
***This review has also been posted on The Social Potato

When I first heard about this book, I wasn’t sure how I’d feel about it but as the reviews started rolling in and many people I knew liked it, I became more and more interested, so that's whywhen I finally picked Say What You Will up, I had soaring expectations. They were met at first, but that eventuallychanged and a twist near the end of the book was too much for me. It made this book take on a soap opera-like feel and there was just too
Thyago Marques
Mar 29, 2016 Thyago Marques rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult, ebook
I don't know where to start. I didn't know what the book was about and I like to be surprised. When I started reading and saw that it was the story of a girl with cerebral palsy and a boy with severe OCD and socially inept, I soon realized that this novel was different, I had never read anything like it. It was a real learning, overturn prejudices, to see beyond the disability ... I liked it a lot and think it would be great if the schools students had to read this book, learn to respect the dif ...more
Jul 31, 2014 Sarah rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorite-ya
I could not put this down...the characters are genuine and captivating. Their struggles with their issues are honest and heart wrenching. This should be a Printz contender.
For older teens or the New Adult category.
Natalie (Never trust a duck)
I, like many of you sticklers out there who feel the need to compare previously popular books such as The Fault in Our Stars, Twilight, and The Hunger Games to new ones, have been shown up yet again. I completely expected a Fault in Our Stars knock off with cerebral palsy instead of cancer, because that's what a bunch of reviews told me. Suffice to say, it was not. A book about illnesses does not constitute a rip off of John Green. I mean it can sometimes, I've read some, but anyways!

Amy has cer
Feb 02, 2015 April rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favourites, 2014, anxiety
All of my reviews are spoiler free (unless stated otherwise) so you can go ahead and read my review!
This story is absolutely beautiful and I feel like there needs to be more books like this out there in the YA community! Amy has severe cerebral palsy and has to use a walker to get around and a special machine to speak for her. Amy is super intelligent and is sick of living in a shell, so for her senior year, she decides to get peer helpers instead of teacher aides in order to make friends and ma
Chelsea (chelseadolling reads)
Edit like a year later- thinking back, this book is nowhere near a 4.5 for me. Amy actions in the last half of this book really bothered me. Can't do it.

Original review - 4.5 stars I think. I adored this book and these characters to pieces, but there's just something keeping me from giving it a full five stars. That being said, I still really liked the plot and I would definitely recommend this book to fans of Rainbow Rowell. So cute.
Oh, how I had such high hopes for this book.

I read the description on Amazon and immediately thought, "I NEED to buy this book." So I did just that, the day it came out, and I read it essentially in one fell swoop, only pausing to sleep.

And I was so very disappointed.

The first part of the book was incredible; learning Amy and Matthew's story, watching their friendship bloom and transform into something possibly more, something neither of them had ever planned. It felt a little bit like Eleanor
Debbie Barr
Feb 21, 2014 Debbie Barr rated it it was amazing
I loved this. I loved Amy and Matthew. I can't remember the last time I read a YA book with such flawed but lovable characters. They both make bad decisions through the course of the book, but I love how they handled the consequences, and in the end isn't that what you want from your protagonists? For them to make mistakes and grow?

If you liked ELEANOR & PARK you're not going to want to miss this one.
Lucy (Queen of Contemporary)
You can read more of my reviews at Queen of Contemporary

You know a novel is truly flawless when you feel as if it’s natural; the words flow into one and you are witnessing the events through the characters’ eyes without fault. That’s how I felt when reading Amy & Matthew.

One of the easiest ways to describe Amy & Matthew is to quote from the text itself: ‘there were many ways to be a freak. Amy had no choice, but other people did. If you worked hard and concentrated, you could hide your f
PVPA Library
Dec 05, 2013 PVPA Library rated it really liked it
I was so happy to get my hands on this book as an ARC.

Sure, there are a few notable books about teens with disabilities--Marcelo in the Real Worldand The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Timejump to mind--but never have I read a book like Cammie McGovern's latest, Say What You Will.

Say What You Will gives us a typical teen-age love story. What is not typical, though, are the teens themselves. More often than not, teens with disabilities in fiction have wings, or can read minds or can tas
Giselle (Book Nerd Canada)
An Electronic Advanced Reader Copy was provided by the publisher via Edelweiss for review. Quotes have been pulled from an ARC and may be subject to change.

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 someo
Casey Ann Books
Feb 10, 2014 Casey Ann Books rated it it was amazing
o I'm not a Huge contemporary fan. I like books that are far away from the truth as possible. But when I read the summary of this book I felt a huge draw to it, and I am so glad I read it.

Literally something I've never ever read about, never would think of reading. A girl with cerebral palsy and a boy with OCD. Sounds like a disaster love story yes? In some ways but in others an amazing tear jerker.

I loved the writing style in this book. A lot of inner monologue which was so refreshing. Carries
Amy, a senior in high school, has cerebral palsy. Pushed by her mother to excel academically, Amy has never truly had a friend or opportunities to experience the social aspects of school. So, for her senior year, she convinces her mother to hire peer helpers to assist her at school. One of her helpers is Matthew, an awkward boy who has OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder). For each, daily life can be a struggle, but they both proved obstacles can be overcome. As Amy and Matthew navigate senior ye ...more
Brittany (brittanymariereads)
I picked up Say What You Will when I was feeling really sick and just wanted an easy read. I hadn’t heard a lot about the book, so I didn’t really have any expectations. I have seen it compared to John Green’s The Fault in Our Stars. I honestly hate this comparison, the only thing that they have in common is that it has kids with medical issues. I thought this was very different from the Fault in Our Stars but it was still a good book.

Say What You Will primarily focuses on Amy and Matthew. Amy h
Kirsti (Melbourne on my mind)
Okay, so. I very much appreciate the fact that this book exists. Because books about characters who have disabilities and yet lead perfectly normal lives are few and far between. And I've NEVER come across a book where the protagonist had cerebral palsy before, so that was great. I also liked the fact that McGovern was all "HEY, GUESS WHAT? PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES CAN HAVE SEX!". Because I know that friends who have disabilities really struggle with people being all "........wait, you can have ...more
Logan LeDuc
Full Review at:

Oh my goodness. I want to throw this book. All that. All the build-up and wonderful goodness of this book and it just ends. That was honestly the most abrupt, ridiculous ending to such a good book that I've ever read.

Okay. Sorry, just finished reading but I cannot believe that ending. That was so disappointing. Anyway.

What did I think of this book? It was beautiful. The writing was average. The plot and characters, however? Phenomenal. I needed to r
Jul 01, 2014 Brian rated it it was ok
This book promised to be a cross between "Eleanor and Park" and "The Fault in Our Stars" and sadly, I did not think it delivered. Matthew takes on a job to be an aide to a disabled girl named Amy who has trouble walking and speaking. She had adult aides in the past, but she decided she needed to learn how to make friends so her mother hires students to help her in school. Amy is attractive but she drools and cant' speak. The book is about the relationship that develops between Amy and Matthew. T ...more
Zoe Maciver
Mar 24, 2014 Zoe Maciver rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
4.5 stars!

This book was so beautifully written and had such amazing characters!

I will say this book spoke to me on a more personal level as a lot of the issues in this book are things that are personal to my life!
3.5 stars

Amy and Matthew...Yaah!! It’s a love story–-a story of two disabled high school students. Whereas Amy is a patient of cerebral palsy, Matthew is suffering from OCD. And it’s very clear that a love story of such central characters is a journey of searing sympathy, and so it is. It’s a story of falling in love for first time. It’s a story of soaring over fears and disabilities.

Though the initial chapters was quite boring and sometime over-stressed but as the story progresses it snags the
Oct 15, 2014 Aysha rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites, e-books
The very first thing I'd like to point out in this review is that: this is NOT like the Fault in Our Stars. This is NOT like Eleanor and Park. This is NOT a story about 2 kids with cancer who fall in love and then they die and then they mourn and whatever. No. It's not even close to that. Say What You Will takes TFIOS and stomps on it, in fact it trumps it on so many levels I don't know why I'm spending so much time trying to convince you that this book is unique. It is. You'll know from the ver ...more
Michelle ( Tea&Titles)
Honestly I was so disappointed with this book. I only bought it recently and picked it up pretty much straight away because I really wanted to read a good love story and since I had heard good things and the cover basically screams LOVE STORY I thought that this would be a good choice. I was wrong. I honestly don't know what it was but I think it was a conglomerate of things from the characters to the writing style.
I didn't like how jumpy the book was it kept washing over important scenes and I
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YA Buddy Readers'...: Say What You Will by Cammie McGovern - Starting March 6th 2015 6 28 Mar 13, 2015 03:30AM  
SPOILER (controversial) 2 74 Dec 14, 2014 11:22AM  
Sno-Isle Mock Printz: This topic has been closed to new comments. Say What You Will 3 34 Oct 08, 2014 03:17PM  
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Cammie McGovern was a Stegner Fellow at Stanford and received the Nelson Algren Award in short fiction. Her work has been published in Redbook, Seventeen, Glimmer Train, TriQuarterly, and other publications.
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“I've decided that it's possible to love someone for entirely selfless reasons, for all of their flaws and weaknesses, and still not succeed in having them love you back. It's sad, perhaps, but not tragic, unless you dwell forever in the pursuit of their elusive affections.” 83 likes
“This feeling will pass. The fear is real but the danger is not.” 73 likes
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