Amy and Matthew have an unconventional relationship, and this goes beyond him being a little country and her being a little rock and roll. Amy has cerebral palsy and Matthew has a slight touch (well, more than a touch) of OCD, and then there’s the little bit about Amy’s Mom paying Matthew to hang out with her too. It’s complicated. Complicated and sweet and heartbreaking and raw.
I feel like we don’t often get to see into the lives of people with disabilities in media, and when we do it’s through rose colored glasses. They are too often set up to be pitied or to be golden-hearted and sexless so that they are infantilized. Cammie McGovern doesn’t do this. In her hands, Amy is witty and smart and full of questions and insight and desire for everything. Matthew isn’t the knight in shining armor. He isn’t the high school jock with a heart two sizes too big who doesn’t care that Amy can’t speak. While that would be okay it’s not realistic. He’s got his own issues and instead of him rescuing Amy they get to rescue each other.
While I won’t give the plot away, I will say that sex, consent, growing up and growing out are all tucked beautifully into the pages of this amazing novel. Go pick it up!