Say the Word by Jeannine Garsee (March 17th 2009—Bloomsbury)
Grade: 2.5 stars out of 5
Summary: “The world expects perfection from seventeen-year-old Shawna Gallagher, and for the most part, that’s what they get. She dates the right boys, gets good grades, and follows her father’s every rule. But when her estranged lesbian mother dies, it’s more than perfect Shawna can take. Suddenly, anger from being abandoned ten years ago is resurfacing along with Shawna’s embarrassment over her mother’s other family. As she confronts family secrets and questions from the past, Shawna realizes there’s a difference between doing the perfect thing and doing the right thing.”
Review: Say the Word is a conflicting book for me. For one thing I cannot seem to make up my mind on the grading. Shawna portrayed various personalities which she describes as Evil Shawna, Perfect Shawna, and Pathetic Shawna. The Perfect one annoyed me, the Evil one I adored, and the Pathetic one I can relate to. So what happens when the main character can be separated into 3 beings? You tell me as I have no clue.
Say the Word is a whirlwind of important topics from modern today—domestic abuse, homosexuality, and the fear of different. Garsee covers all the topics in a way that binds them together. The plot forces the reader to go along Shawna’s life while she tries to figure out why her mother left her behind.
What I love was the way Garsee crafted the tale of Shawna’s mother and her partner. The way they connected in the past and possible links to their relationship. It was not really out of nowhere as the beginning had led on. I actually got a sense of deep between the two especially when her mother dies. You can definitely feel the anguish behind the tears and frustration.
I would have love to seen was more development between Arye and Shawna. Can I just say that a simple rump between the grass (yes, grass) does not cover the whole love relationship aspect. The ending as well was too…disappointing. After the struggle to achieve a sense of unity and clarity we’re back to the basic! Shawna still following Dad’s dream and becoming a doctor rather than following her passion—art.
Overall: Nice effort
I was supposed to host Jeannine Garsee for Laura's blog tour but I was unable to email her in time (emailed around Saturday) and therefore has no Q&A to show. I apologize to Laura as I did not fully do my duties as a stop.
You can stop by Laura's blog where the schedule for Say the Word's tour. She is also giving away Say the Word playlist to random people who comment as well as her Q&A!
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