Dare You To by Katie McGarry, published May 2013 by Harlequin Teen.
Read: July 2014
Genre: Young Adult/Romance/Contemporary
Source: Purchased – eBook
Get It Now: Wordery
Goodreads Synopsis: If anyone knew the truth about Beth Risk’s home life, they’d send her mother to jail and 17 year old Beth who knows where. So she protects her mom at all costs. Until the day her uncle swoops in and forces Beth to choose between her mom’s freedom and her own happiness. That’s how Beth finds herself living with an aunt who doesn’t want her and going to a school that doesn’t understand her. At all. Except for the one guy who shouldn’t get her, but does… Ryan Stone is the town golden boy, a popular baseball star jock, with secrets he can’t tell anyone. Not even the friends he shares everything with, including the constant dares to do crazy things. The craziest? Asking out the Skater girl who couldn’t be less interested in him.
But what begins as a dare becomes an intense attraction neither Ryan nor Beth expected. Suddenly, the boy with the flawless image risks his dreams – and his life – for the girl he loves, and the girl who won’t let anyone get too close is daring herself to want it all…
I read Pushing the Limits and was really surprised by how much I liked it (full review). I wasn’t planning to start another Katie McGarry book so soon, but I was pulled towards it, it called to me. This book follows Beth’s story, and initially I was dubious – Beth wasn’t a character I overly liked in Pushing the Limits, so I wasn’t sure what I’d make of this book. I was in for a treat. We get to see a completely different side to Beth, and we meet Ryan. Le Sigh. I’m a Ryan fan. As per usual, these characters have interesting and somewhat traumatic stories to tell – but I’m not going to whinge about that. Come on now, if these characters had perfect, or even remotely “normal” lives, these stories would be nowhere near as interesting. I’m slowly coming around to these covers too, originally I wasn’t a fan, but the people on the covers match the descriptions of the main characters pretty accurately, so props for that.
More of my favourite multiple perspective story-telling in this novel, which immediately gets a thumbs up. Going into this book, I knew it probably wasn’t the best choice for #sexmeup week (which really needs to be a month!) as it’s more Young Adult, less New-Adult-with-clothes-off-and-a-cherry-on-top. But I couldn’t resist. The thought of any other book was off-putting, I had to read this.
If I thought Pushing the Limits was a little long, I was not prepared for the length of this novel. Again though, as I was reading the length didn’t really get to me, yes it’s a longer novel than you’d expect for a YA contemporary, but I didn’t really feel that it dragged. I did race through the last 10% or-so, but that’s because it was 1am and I had to work the next day…
I wanted to rate this a little higher than Pushing the Limits, but I can’t. Echo and Noah, Beth and Ryan, I love them all and I’m seriously looking forward to reading the rest of this series. I can’t pick a favourite – while I was reading Dare You To I’d decided it was my favourite, but now, merely a few days later – I can’t choose. As for the rest of this series, I’m being a bit cheap – I own the first two as eBooks and I’m not sure I’d rush out to buy them in hard-copy (I tend to only want duplicates if it’s a book I completely adore). I’ve discovered Isaiah is the main character in Crash Into You, the third installment in this series, and again from the outset I’m not overly excited by this, but I’ve no doubt McGarry will pull one out of the bag.
I read and reviewed this book as part of the #sexmeup readathon. To find out more click here.