When Drix was convicted of a crime–one he didn’t commit–he thought his life was over. But opportunity came with the new Second Chance Program, the governor’s newest pet project to get delinquents off the streets, rehabilitated and back into society. Drix knows this is his chance to get his life back on track, even if it means being paraded in front of reporters for a while.
Elle knows she lives a life of privilege. As the governor’s daughter, she can open doors with her name alone. But the expectations and pressure to be someone she isn’t may be too much to handle. She wants to follow her own path, whatever that means.
When Drix and Elle meet, their connection is immediate, but so are their problems. Drix is not the type of boy Elle’s parents have in mind for her, and Elle is not the kind of girl who can understand Drix’s messy life.
But sometimes love can breach all barriers.
Fighting against a society that can’t imagine them together, Drix and Elle must push themselves–Drix to confront the truth of the robbery, and Elle to assert her independence–and each other to finally get what they deserve.
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*ARC Kindly provided by Katie Mcgarry & Inkslinger PR thru Netgalley for Blog Tour*
It’s been a couple of years since I last read a book by Katie Mcgarry. Two things that I do remember whenever I read a book written by her is that first it’s going to be filled with emotions, so I need to have my tissues nearby and second, it’s going to be filled with self and familial love. Say You’ll Remember Me is Katie Mcgarry’s newest novel about two teens from different walks of life bumping into each other and falling in love.
Honestly, the story started slow. I’m 20% in and I feel like I’m still not into it. Until our two main characters bumped into each other and their complicated web of life started to tangle that I feel like I woke up and started really reading.
Drix and Elle came from two very different walks of life.
Drix just got out of juvenile detention. Elle is the governor’s daughter.
“I got the good boy cut with the bad boy stride.”
Drix is the governor’s face for his newest project – “The Second Chance Program”. Said program aims to slow the rising crime rate of teens and these teens funneling into the adult prison system. But he did not commit the crime. What will happen now?
Drix lived a difficult life. He’s broken before he entered the detention but more so shattered after going out. Though he was introduced as a juvenile delinquent, I knew there was something redeemable about him. I really love how Katie has written his character; he’s not perfect; he did a lot of mistakes at such a youthful age and juvenile detention might have taught him lessons but what happened to him – being accused of a crime he did not commit is still an injustice. Throughout the story we see two sides of Drix. The before and after. The common ground is that he deeply cares for his family and just wanted to give them the best that he could after all the sufferings they’ve all been especially with their parents being non-existent.
“It’s not okay. I’m seventeen years old, I don’t know who I am, and I don’t have any idea how to get my parents to take me seriously. I’m trapped, and I can’t breathe.”
Elle’s life as the governor’s daughter seems to be perfect. What the people outside don’t see is that she struggles in getting the freedom to do things that she really loves and wants. She struggles under the pressure and expectations of her parents. I like Elle for not giving up and doing the best that she could to serve the best interests for the people around her.
“Is talking to me going to get you into trouble?”
“I’m willing to live dangerously.”
Drix and Elle met, and it might be too cliché to say this, but sparks did fly; there’s an immediate connection between them. Though it is an off-limits romance, these two really got me on edge. Their slow-burn romance was worth anticipating and reading. Drix and Elle are kindred spirits. They find comfort and solace on each other.
Though the romance takes a huge portion of the story, the familial aspect was beautifully shown as well. Drix’s family- Axle, Holiday, Dominic, Kellan and Marcus might not have anything monetary or material wise, but they have each other’s back and that makes them a solid team. Somewhere in the middle of reading, I felt sad. I felt pity. I felt injustice. For the characters on this story who became victims of bad circumstances that they all didn’t ask for and didn’t deserve.
“We’re stronger together, Drix. I promise we are. Please don’t give up on us. Please don’t give up on yourself.”
As the story’s end came, I couldn’t help but feel the intensity of those un-anticipated scenes. I was surprised that the story turned that way, but it was oh so good! It was unexpected but totally the best way for the story to end. I’ll leave it to say that justice has been served.
The story line was remarkable, characters are realistically written, and emotions are on point! Overall, Katie Mcgarry is once again successful in delivering a compelling coming of age story about two teens who are different as night and day but finding a common ground with love and understanding for each other.
“Amazing things are going to happen because that’s what happens when you find your wings and finally fly.”
Sean points, and a woman in the back asks, “You never met Mr. Pierce before?”
I shake my head, and Sean gestures to the microphone. “No. I was playing a midway game earlier, and he ended up playing beside me, but then we went our separate ways. I left the game, and these guys started to harass me, and hen Hendrix asked if I needed help. I agreed, and he suggested we talk. He said that if the guys thought we were friends they would eventually lose interest, and they did. Hendrix played a game, and we talked until Andrew showed.”
“Andrew?” someone asks.
“Andrew Morton.” That causes enough of a stir that nervousness leaks into my bloodstream and makes my hands cold and clammy. Why is it that I feel that I said something terribly wrong?
“Are you and Andrew Morton friends?” someone else asks, and the question hits me in a sickening way. I name-dropped the grandson of the most powerful US Senator…the position my father is campaigning for. Sean is going to roast me alive.
“Yes. We’ve been friends for as long as I remember.” Friends, enemies, it’s all semantics at this point.
“Did you and Andrew Morton plan to attend the festival together?” Another reporter.
“Were you on a date?” a woman asks.
My entire body recoils. “What?”
“Are you and Andrew Morton romantically involved?”
I become one of those bunnies who go still at the slightest sound. “I thought we were talking about Hendrix.”
“Did Mr. Pierce confront the men?”
Finally back on track. “No, he was adamant that there should be no violence.”
More questions and I put my hand in the air as I feel like I’m the one on trial. “Isn’t that the point? Hendrix went through my dad’s program, and one of the first chances he had to make a good decision, he made one. We’re strangers, and he helped me without violence. That, to me, is success.” A few people nod their head, and because I don’t want to be done yet… “Mr. O’Bryan—grown men shouldn’t be following seventeen-year-old girls. I’m curious why you didn’t step in when I was being harassed. If you saw Hendrix and me together, then you know what happened, and it’s horrifying you didn’t help. Hendrix made the right choice. You did not.”
A rumble of conversation, Sean places a hand on my arm and gently, but firmly pushes me to the side. The raging fire in his eyes says he’s mentally measuring out the room in the basement he’s going to let me rot in for the next ten years.
My father approaches the microphone with an ease I envy. “Any more questions for Ellison can be sent to my press secretary. As you can tell, it’s been a trying day for my daughter, but we are most grateful for Mr. Pierce’s actions. We promised a program that was going to help our state’s youth turn their lives around, and, thanks to Mr. Pierce’s admirable actions, we are proud of our first program’s success.”
He offers Drix his hand again, and Drix accepts.
Lots of pictures and applause, and Dad leans in and whispers something to him. I can’t tell what it is, but I do see the shadow that crosses over Drix’s face, his throat move as he swallow and then the slight nod of his head.
I don’t know what happened, but I don’t like it. The urge is to rush Drix, but Sean has a firm hold on my elbow, keeping me in place, silently berating me for causing problems.
Drix stands behind the podium and drops a bomb so huge the ground shakes beneath my feet. “Because Ellison had enough courage to explain what happened today, I’m going to tell you what I was convicted of…”
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Katie McGarry was a teenager during the age of grunge and boy bands and remembers those years as the best and worst of her life. She is a lover of music, happy endings, reality television, and is a secret University of Kentucky basketball fan.
Katie is the author of full length YA novels, PUSHING THE LIMITS, DARE YOU TO, CRASH INTO YOU, TAKE ME ON, BREAKING THE RULES, and NOWHERE BUT HERE and the e-novellas, CROSSING THE LINE and RED AT NIGHT. Her debut YA novel, PUSHING THE LIMITS was a 2012 Goodreads Choice Finalist for YA Fiction, a RT Magazine’s 2012 Reviewer’s Choice Awards Nominee for Young Adult Contemporary Novel, a double Rita Finalist, and a 2013 YALSA Top Ten Teen Pick. DARE YOU TO was also a Goodreads Choice Finalist for YA Fiction and won RT Magazine’s Reviewer’s Choice Best Book Award for Young Adult Contemporary fiction in 2013.
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