What I Didn’t Say by Keary Taylor

Summary from goodreads:

Getting drunk homecoming night your senior year is never a good idea, but Jake Hayes never expected it all to end with a car crash and a t-post embedded in his throat. His biggest regret about it all? What he never said to Samantha Shay. He’s been in love with her for years and never had the guts to tell her. Now it’s too late. Because after that night, Jake will never be able to talk again.

When Jake returns to his small island home, population 5,000, he’ll have to learn how to deal with being mute. He also finds that his family isn’t limited to his six brothers and sisters, that sometimes an entire island is watching out for you. And when he gets the chance to spend more time with Samantha, she’ll help him learn that not being able to talk isnโ€™t the worst thing that could ever happen to you. Maybe, if she’ll let him, Jake will finally tell her what he didn’t say before, even if he can’t actually say it.

link: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/13366929-what-i-didn-t-say
I have so many good things to say about this book but first I want to say this book was brave. Many YA books are told from the perspective of the girl. This book was not only told from the boy’s perspective but also from a mute boy’s perspective. And guess what? It totally worked. Keary Taylor wrote this book with such care and attention to detail. It was poignant, it was deep, and sometimes it was silly. I couldn’t help but fall in love with both Jake and Samantha’s characters. Although Jake went through such a tragedy and often times you see him fall into this little pit of despair and anguish, he really evolves as a character as the book progresses. And Samantha, beautiful Samantha Shay. When Samantha is introduced I found myself thinking, “Oh great, another A student, perfect girl.” And boy, was I wrong. Yes, Sam cares a lot about her education but she’s more than a pretty girl with a high GPA. She’s funny, she’s intelligent, and she’s strong. Samantha faces her own challenges and helps Jake through his with such grace. I loved her.
I also really loved the way Keary Taylor handled Jake’s accident. She allowed him to feel the anguish and the anger but it wasn’t annoying or overly done, to me. Jake had his moments where he was frustrated and angry, but deservedly so. However, the entire story wasn’t filled with Jake being a total pessimist. I think that was really important for the story. I can’t imagine how Jake felt when he woke up and had to relearn how to live without his voice but I’m glad he didn’t completely throw his life away.
Overall this book was extremely good. I really loved it and thought it was really well written. I would totally recommend it to YA contemporary-lovers out there. It elicits a breadth of emotion and will most likely make you laugh a lot and maybe even cry a little. Enjoy!

7 thoughts on “What I Didn’t Say by Keary Taylor

  1. Oh wow this book sounds so beautiful! And your review is great! I don’t think I’ve ever read a YA book where a character cannot speak. I definitely want to check out this book now. Thanks for sharing :).

  2. Hey, there! Just wanted to say thanks for introducing me to this book – I don’t think I enjoyed it as much as you did, but it was an interesting foray into a genre I don’t frequently read. Really liked that Taylor told the story from the perspective of a mute… was shocked at how well that went. — Anyway, yeah… thanks much! ๐Ÿ˜€

  3. Pingback: Bookish Haul Of Awesomeness Numero Siete | The Streetlight Reader

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