Friday, 30 May 2014

Amy and Matthew by Cammie McGovern

Amy & MatthewAmy loves Matthew and he loves her back. This is their story. Amy is unflinchingly honest about her limitations. Born with cerebral palsy, she can’t walk or talk without help. But trapped inside this uncooperative body lies a brilliant mind and a luminous spirit – a girl capable of truly loving and worthy of being loved in return. Matthew has his own set of challenges – a mind consumed by unwanted repeated thoughts, obsessive rituals and a crippling fear that he can't explain. But underneath all of the anxiety lies a deep seed of hope for someone to come along who believes in him…

I think the best way of describing Amy and Matthew is over-hyped. 

Amy and Matthew follows - no surprise - Amy and Matthew. Amy and Matthew are in their final year of high school and after years of over protection and loneliness, Amy's mother decides that it's time she made some friends and so enlists four students in Amy's year group to help her, in replacement of the adults whom have been helping her throughout high school. Amy suffers from cerebral palsy, meaning that whilst she has retired to a wheelchair, she needs a lot of help. Amy only connects with one of her helpers and that is Matthew, who has a set of problems that he has to deal with himself as well as dealing with Amy's too.

This is a novel that takes place over the course of a school year, meaning that aside from the fact that it's a long period of time to cover, Amy and Matthew was quite a slow novel in itself on top of that, so this book dragged a lot. I really liked the plot though, however I accidentally found out a major spoiler which kind of affected my reading of the second half of the book. Whilst Matthew was helping Amy, Amy was trying to help Matthew overcome his difficulties surrounding suffering from Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and this helped them to begin falling in love. The way that they started to fall for each other was described wonderfully but I feel like it was stretched out for too long, I just felt like saying "WHY CAN'T YOU JUST BE TOGETHER??". 

One thing that bothered me was what exactly it was that happened in the second half of the book. When Amy heads off to University, after a few months it is revealed that she is pregnant. Teenage pregnancy is a topic that I hadn't read about before and I don't think it was wrote about that well. It was very vague and quick and just a rather brief addition to the plot towards the end of the book. It was like Cammie McGovern just wanted to quickly add in some sort of problem that could be experienced and later solved and it really didn't work. 

Another issue that I had was that not many of the characters were easy to warm to. In particular Amy. I thought at the start of the book that Amy, as one of the main characters would have been rather likeable and I was wrong. It might be just me, but she came across as arrogant, pushy and really bossy, especially to Matthew and it was something that wasn't pleasant to read about. Matthew on the other hand was a great character who definitely helped make this book something enjoyable to read.

So it could have been better, it could have been worse. But overall, I liked it.

Holly x

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