Title: Dare You To
Series: Pushing the Limits, Book 2
Author: Katie McGarry
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Young Adult
Sensuality Rating: Mild
Source: review copy provided by publisher
Published: May 2013 by Harlequin
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....
Why I Read this Book: I was so utterly blown away by Pushing the Limits. That book was phenomenal. And after I read the sampler for Dare You To, I was immediately hooked on Beth’s story and had to read the rest. I was curious to see if Katie McGarry could craft another resonating story, and boy did she ever!
What I Liked: One of my favorite types of narration is multiple point of view told in first person between the two lead characters. I feel that this gives the reader insight to what both characters are going through, both emotionally and mentally. Katie McGarry does a really good job of blending both point of views together beautifully, making for seamless storytelling. And she does it without repetition. She also has the ability to convey the character’s emotions in such a compelling way, that it pulls the reader deeper into the story.
There was an interesting connection between Ryan and Beth's relationship and Ryan’s project for his writing class. I won't go into it too much but I will say that it was a great way to help Ryan discover his true emotions and feelings and help sort them all out. I also think it helped Beth realize what was going on with Ryan and his emotions and feelings towards her.
As Beth’s best friend, Isaiah is in this book very much so and the emotions between him and Beth were intense. There was great character development displayed, for both Beth and Isaiah, and discovery in terms of their relationship as well. I also liked Lacy’s character. She was just ‘one of the guys’ with Chris, Logan, and Ryan and ended up in a relationship with one of them. The whole cast of characters, the good and the bad, were strongly portrayed.
What I Didn’t Like: I don’t understand what purpose Allison's character served in the story line. She didn’t bring anything to the table, so the speak, as she didn't propel the story along in anyway. She could have been removed from the story and everything else would have stayed the same.
“Do you know nothing about dares? You can’t double dog dare unless I turn down the initial dare.”
– Ryan to Beth
Overall Impression: Dare You To was not as good as its predecessor, it was better. That says a lot, seeing how I rated Pushing the Limits with a perfect 5 frog rating and was one of my Top Picks of 2012. Dare You To was full of raw intensity and the author has the capability of writing quite a captivating and riveting story. Katie McGarry pushes the envelope with stereotypes and prejudices like homophobia, major drug use, violence, and abuse. I cannot wait for the next book in this series, Crash Into You, which will be Isaiah’s book.
Brianna’s reviews for other books in this series:
Pushing the Limits, Book 1