Today I’m reviewing Say Something by Cathy Morrison, a deep and thought provoking YA novel that covers a very sensitive subject.
That’s what he called me when he stole my innocence. I was a trusting, little girl, and he ruined everything. I tried to tell someone, but my mother made me change my story. After all these years, I still carry this dark secret in my heart.
Now there’s this guy in my class. A nice guy. And he likes me. He makes me think that maybe, just maybe, I could be normal. I could be happy. Just when things are getting good, the pervert barrels back into my life and I discover another little girl is in danger.
Now, what do I do? I can stay safe and silent…or I can do whatever it takes to make sure he never calls another girl little beauty again.
*Abuse is NOT depicted in a graphic manner.
As is clear from the blurb, Say Something covers the subject of child sexual abuse, but it is written in a sensitive manner. There are no graphic scenes or unnecessary descriptions. The story focuses instead on the victim, Maggie, as she navigates her recovery; her therapy sessions, the night terrors, not to mention surviving high school and her first potential boyfriend all whilst harbouring the dark secrets of her past.
Maggie is constantly being pulled in multiple directions, torn between her head and her heart: To pursue her blossoming romance with Matt, or step away. To let Matt know what happened to her, and who did it, or keep quiet. To go through emotionally painful treatments in therapy, or keep suffering her freshly returned night terrors.
Her biggest decision of all, though, is when her abuser walks back in to her life. When she discovers another little girl could be in danger, Maggie needs to make the difficult decision of whether or not to finally speak up and report her abuser – And this time, no more recanting her story.
I found this to be such a powerful book, not only did the author tackle such a difficult subject, but she researched it well. The way the story is told continually highlights and reinforces the fact that abuse can happen to anyone, using real life facts and figures to get the message across. We need more books like this being published!