Thursday, October 10, 2013

Book Review - Dare You To by Katie McGarry

Publish Date: May 28, 2013
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
ISBN:  978-1-4603-1328-2
Pages:  ebook, 365
Series: Pushing The Limits, #2
Source: ebook from Netgalley

Goodreads Synopsis:

If anyone knew the truth about Beth Risk's home life, they'd send her mother to jail and seventeen-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....

My Review:

I really wish I read and reviewed Dare You To sooner. I had the book for a while before I got around to reading it, and I've had my review done, but only now posting it here. I loved the book, and since reading it, I have read other books written by Katie McGarry. She is a fantastic writer!
The book starts off simple enough. Ryan and his friends are out, and he is dared to get a girls phone number. A girl his friends have to pick, someone they believe he will have a hard time with. In walks a girl; black hair, black clothing, piercings all over, the whole nine yards. Ryan knows that it's going to be hard to get her number but Ryan doesn't lose. That's what years of baseball, countless dares and a father whose expectations need to be lived by have taught him. He doesn't lose, no matter what. So when this girl says no after all of Ryan's usual moves, he's shocked! He can't believe he lost, and neither can his friends, so when they run into each other again, Ryan wont give up. Little do they know, their lives will be impacted by each other through more than a casual dare.
Beth, this girl who turned Ryan down has secrets and a life she can't run away from though people are trying to make her. She's been in trouble, has an alcohol and drug addicted mother who is with a man who is known to beat her. Beth knows too well that she is bad news to Ryan, the perfect boy who has a perfect life in the perfect town. Why is it then that she can't seem to stay away from him and break the connection they obviously feel toward each other. Ryan can't believe that all of this has escalated from a dare, but he can't leave Beth alone, and starts to question his life when Beth shows him a whole new meaning of life. Together Beth and Ryan discover there is more to life and in doing so they discover what it feels to be truly loved by someone.
I absolutely loved the relationship between Beth and Ryan. I loved Beth - she doesn't care what people think of her and she tells it as it is. The relationship they build is true, genuine and Katie McGarry has a way of bringing it to life and making these characters come alive. I felt as though I was experiencing the events of the book first hand, when an author can do that, they definitely have a gift. My favourite part of the book besides the WHOLE thing was one simple little quote, "Dance with me." I had shivers run down my spine and had goosebumps reading this part. 
Dare You To is a book that is worth reading over and over again. I was drawn in with the change of narrative between Ryan and Beth, as it gave me a full 360° view of feelings and emotions that mattered so much throughout the book. And the last page? I wanted to hold onto the words forever. It was so intense that I didn't want it to end.

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