Terrible Thursday: The Girl Who Couldn’t Say No

Posted 28 November, 2013 by April @ The Steadfast Reader in Reviews

Terrible Thursday: The Girl Who Couldn’t Say NoThe Girl Who Couldn't Say No by Tracy Engelbrecht
Published by Oshun on 2007
Pages: 179

A sharp, occasionally shocking, memoir that will change how you look at young, single mothers, The Girl Who Couldn’t Say No is also an amusing look at dating as a single twenty-something with a teenager and a toddler.

Told with frank South African humour and refreshingly mature insight, Tracy Engelbrecht tells the story of how she came to find herself pregnant at 15 … and how she coped with pregnancy, birth and homework.

As Comic-Book Guy from ‘The Simpsons’ might say, Worst. Book. Ever. Okay, maybe not EVER but it’s pretty awful. And I’m never getting that time back.

The woman may have been 27/28 when the book was published, but it sounds like it comes straight from the diaries of well, a fifteen year old. Good concept, important subject matter, TERRIBLY executed. 

Through the blood, tears, sweat, and what sounds like the massive support of her family she was able to continue her education and have decent job prospects, but other than a quick blurb at the end, about young girls – postpartum, who still don’t understand what it means to have a baby – it fails to be useful even as a cautionary tale. 

I wish I’d known to begin with she was South African because the language (during the read) left me feeling like it was an American attempting to use British slang to set herself apart. That’s my bad, I admit it.

I don’t want to be personal, but it IS a memoir. I hopehopehope this woman is doing a little therapy and maybe seeing a psychiatrist – being of ‘those that require a little extra mental health help’ – I’m just calling it like it appears in the book. 

Ugh. Don’t read it. Don’t even think about it. I can’t believe this tripe has over three stars on Goodreads.


April @ The Steadfast Reader


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