“Doesn’t matter who did it. Not anymore. I did the time. It’s over.”
When Drix was convicted of a crime–one he didn’t commit–he thought his life was over. But opportunity came with the 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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With it’s enchanting forbidden romance and perfectly imperfect cast of teenage characters, Say You’ll Remember Me finds incredible balance between self discovery and wants of the heart. McGarry has always had the ability to flesh out and make vivid the painful miring of injustice with redeemable characters, and again manages to add another layer with this particular tale of two opposites attracting, the convict and the governor’s daughter.
Aside from the obvious angst involved with two characters from starkly different backgrounds, both Drix and Elle have a connection that transcends the physical nature of attraction and extends into their empty emotional wells. The boy of nothing and the girl of everything are intrinsically intertwined by the lack of unconditional love and support in their lives and find that safe place in one another. Most beguiling was the character of Drix; a young man with a heartbreaking upbringing and many harmful setbacks, but even with all odds stacked against him, his inner spirit was carved on these pages. I could feel the unjustness, the constant struggle to keep getting back up, and every step forward he had to fight tooth and nail for when the weight was, at most times, unbearable to push against, and my heart bled for this boy. The most evocative element of this story was him and how beautifully he was penned. But I would be remiss to not mention the quiet and hidden pain Elle suffered in her plush life, how it shaped her, and how greatly I felt for her too. I very much enjoyed delving into two very different worlds, ones so contrasting but producing the same unfortunate effect on these two teens, and watching them find solace in one another.
There are some books you read that excite and feed the butterflies in your stomach, and Say You’ll Remember Me was one of them. There aren’t words to explain how deeply I fell for their love story, how easily I became a part of it, and how beautifully it grew with every page turn. And though it was slow in some parts, it did not lessen the effect of this story and its characters. With an authentic depiction of the true angst of teenage self-discovery, it’s a story that can easily feel as if it’s yours.
Holiday smacks my arm and wrath owns her eyes. “Why didn’t you talk to her?”
I glance around at my family—Axle, Holiday, my best friend, Dominic, and his younger sister, Kellen. I’m searching for at least one of them to have my back and tell her to step off, but instead they’re curious for the answer. Even Axle’s giving me a questioning gaze, and the last thing my womanizing brother deserves is an explanation from me in my decisions regarding women.
Last time I was home, his reputation was as bad as Dad’s, minus the progeny. There are three siblings in this family, and we have three different birth mothers. Dad not only didn’t know how to use a condom, but he didn’t know how to stay true to one woman.
“I talked to her.”
My younger sister throws her arms out and drops her voice to what I’m assuming is to mimic me, but I don’t sound like an idiot. “You’re good at this.” She resumes her normal tone which is entering high-pitched. “Seriously? That’s all you’ve got? Did you get some sort of amoeba that eats your brain while hanging out in juvie?”
I fold my arms over my chest and wonder if my sister can read pissed-off body language.
“You can still catch the girl and talk to her,” Holiday continues, proving she doesn’t care I’m silently informing her to quit. “Don’t make me chase her for you because that would be embarrassing. Embarrassing for you. Not me. I’ll have to tell her you sent me, and because you’re a wuss, I’ll have to ask her out for you like we’re in sixth grade.”
I find myself missing the middle of nowhere. Trees, bonfires, mosquitos, mud, bears…. company that didn’t talk.
“She’s out of my league.” I haven’t spoken truer words in months. She was beautiful. She was poised. She was a cool breeze after a hot humid rain. She was that first ray of sunshine in the dark woods. She was the smell of honeysuckle in bloom. She was the first damn thing that made me forget who I am and what I’ve gotten myself into over the past year. That means she was out of my league.
Granted, she was out of my league before I was arrested. Everything from her manicured nails, to her brand-name clothes, to her high-end purse, to the way she held herself said she was about a hundred times higher on the social and economic spectrum than me, but the person I was before would have made the play because I was smooth—just like my father.
“She is not out of your league.” Holiday hounds me. “She smiled at you. I know when a girl likes what she sees, and she liked what she saw in you.”
Tension builds in my neck. Yeah, the girl smiled, but she didn’t know what she was smiling at. I’m a pretty façade on the outside. On the inside, I’m a house of cards teetering on a bad foundation.
♦ABOUT THE AUTHOR♦
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.