Thursday, 6 September 2012

Review: What I Didn't Say by Keary Taylor

Title: What I Didn't Say
Author: Keary Taylor
Author Info: Website|Twitter|Facebook
Genre: Contemporary
Source: Netgalley
Format: eGalley
Publication Date: May 6th 2012

Tell Me About It
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 isn’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.
My Thoughts
Jake Hayes, the protagonist, lives on small island where everyone knows each others business, even down to knowing things about teachers that you didn't want to know.  After a night out with friends and too much alcohol, Jake makes the decision to find Samantha Shay, and finally tell her how he feels about it.  Unfortunately, they never make it to Samantha's, they end up crashing their car, which results in Jake ending up in hospital and losing his ability to speak.

The beginning of What I Didn't Say, jumps backwards and forwards through a small time frame in Jakes life, but it explains the lead up to what happens and what plans Jake originally had for his future. After the accident we get a first hand look into the struggle that Jake has to go through every day just to get out of hospital and go home, only to find its even harder at home that he thought it would be.

As Sam and Jake get closer as friends, she reveals a secret she has been hiding from everyone, and although I really admire Jake for stepping in and helping her in her time of need, I do think he should have thought about it more and dealt with it properly.  When the truth is discovered Sam is sent away, and Jake is ready to leave and get her for the exact minute she has her birthday and is able to come back.  I absolutely loved how Jake's family stepped up to help.  They worked together to get Sam back and changed their property so she could be in a safe home while she finished school.

I was surprised to find I really enjoyed What I Didn't Say. With Jake having no voice to share his thoughts and feelings, seeing them wrote down in his notes, or as his thoughts really hits home at how hard it is for him, even just to communicate and answer a simple question involves a lot more effect than it would for us.  What I Didn't Say is a thought provoking book, that actually makes you sit and wonder how you would cope if it happened to you, and how much we take advantage of the things that we can do.  The emotions in the book are powerful and actually make you stop and take it all in.

Before reading What I Didn't Say I had never heard of Keary Taylor but I will make a point of keeping my eye open for more of her books.

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