Say You Swear Review

Marissa Slowinski

Opinion Editor

Say You Swear by Meagan Brandy follows Arianna and her close-knit group of friends including her twin brother Mason, best friends Chase and Brady, and her best girl-friend Cameron through going into college coming off from summer break. After a soul-crushing rejection, Arianna goes into her freshman year depressed and wants to isolate herself, until she meets him– Noah.

Going into this book, I didn’t know anything about it. The summary on Goodreads and the back of the book didn’t give much away, so it was interesting to go in blind, especially after hearing great things about it all over Bookstagram. This book did not disappoint and was 100% worth the hype that surrounds it. I fell in love with these characters. Their dynamic is playful and fun, with the aura of deeply rooted love for one another; it was insane how well-written the interactions between the core 5 characters are. 

There are parties, attractive boys, sports (but those are kept to a minimum), drinking, and regular college antics in this book, which is something I enjoy heavily in real life. I love a good party scene followed by a hanging-out-on-the-couch-hungover scene the day after. It’s my favorite.

This book was emotionally driven and focused on character building with interpersonal connections. It was complex, which fantastically stood out because sometimes college romances aren’t as layered or deep as I like. With themes of growing up, growing apart, seeking independence, and finding your happiness, I will be thinking about this book for a long time.

An element of this story that was surprising was the love triangle. I hesitate to even call it a true love triangle, but I don’t want to give anything away.  I’ll leave it at this: the “love triangle” trope is not one I gravitate towards at all because it usually fuels me with a burning desire to just pluck the main character off the page and scream at her. I didn’t feel that way while reading Say You Swear, in fact, I felt like this plot device helped the storyline.

I don’t want to give away too much of what happens because I think most of the plot is left ambiguous for a reason, but all I can say is…you know who you want her to be with while reading this and he is flawless.

The connection between Arianna and her love interest is potent. They had such beautiful development with constant awareness for one another aided by pining lust mixed with friendly banter. The slower burn between these characters made their intimate scenes so sweet. You can feel the love they have for one another even in the smallest moments. 

You can also feel the love between the people in Arianna’s friend group. The chemistry between everyone was perfect and reminded me of the best moments I’ve had with my closest friends. Friendship is a bond that cannot be replicated and is monumentally important to personal growth. I appreciated the inclusion of going through tough, trying times, and how they impact your friends, showing that true friends never stray away even if there is a period of minor separation due to mental health. The way it was presented rang so true, emphasizing how moving this book really was.

I have only 3 criticisms (yes I counted). The first issue is that it was a TINY bit too long. The second is that the main love interest was a little too perfect, but he was still an absolute God and I ate up every second he was on the page. The third has to do with her brother, Mason. For how overprotective he was and how in sync he was with Arianna, it is hard to believe he really didn’t know what happened. It took until the end for it to be revealed and he was shocked.

Regardless, this book had me crying, laughing, and biting my nails and I can’t recommend it enough. If you want to get into sports romances/college romances I would say this (along with Icebreaker) would be my 2 recommendations at this time (and that’s coming from someone who doesn’t love sports or college romances).