April (The Steadfast Reader)'s Reviews > The Girl Who Couldn't Say No

The Girl Who Couldn't Say No by Tracy Engelbrecht
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Dec 14, 11

bookshelves: memiors, blogged
Recommended for: NO ONE
Read on December 13, 2011

As Comic-Book Guy from 'The Simpsons' might say, Worst. Book. Ever. Okay, maybe not EVER but it's pretty awful. And I'm never getting that time back. I'm not a single mother - but I did have an unplanned child at an inopportune time.

The woman may have been 27/28 when the book was published, but it sounds like it comes straight from the diaries of well, a fifteen year old. Good concept, important subject matter, TERRIBLY executed.

Through the blood, tears, sweat, and what sounds like the massive support of her family she was able to continue her education and have decent job prospects, but other than a quick blurb at the end, about young girls - postpartum, who still don't understand what it means to have a baby - it fails to be useful even as a cautionary tale.

I wish I'd known to begin with she was South African because the language (during the read) left me feeling like it was an American attempting to use British slang to set herself apart. That's my bad, I admit it.

I don't want to be personal, but it IS a memoir. I hopehopehope this woman is doing a little therapy and maybe seeing a psychiatrist - being of 'those that require a little extra mental health help' - I'm just calling it like it appears in the book.

Ugh. Don't read it. Don't even think about it. I can't believe this tripe has over three stars on Goodreads.
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message 1: by Michael (last edited May 29, 2012 10:10PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Michael Burhans Wow, did we read the same book? As a father of 3 (none planned, LOL, they kept telling us my wife was sterile, that the last time was a complete miracle!) all daughters I found it profoundly moving. I shared it with my teen daughter As a precautionary tale. It in fact lead to several good discussions about life, sexuality, and the consequences of choices made. The fact the author does not go around beating her chest and shouting Mea culpa, or making lame excuses was one of the things I found refreshing and good about it

It was in the intro that she was from South Africa so I am not sure how you missed that. Yes she had massive help from her family, a point she drove home again and again, including how even while realizing that at the time she was also resentful of in her postpartum phase.

I found it valuable and thought provoking to the point I sought out the author to tell her myself.


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