Friday, May 3, 2013

Review: Dare You To by Katie McGarry

Dare You To (Pushing the Limits #2)
by Katie McGarry
Published by Harlequin Teen
Release Date May 28, 2013
Hardcover: 480 pages

About the book:
Ryan lowers his lips to my ear. "Dance with me, Beth."

"No." I whisper the reply. I hate him and I hate myself for wanting him to touch me again....

"I dare you..."
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... (Goodreads)


I received a copy of Pushing the Limits last year at BEA, and couldn't wait to read it after hearing so many good things about it. And with good cause. It was, is, and amazing book. And not only for the main story and characters. The secondary characters were just as intriguing, and sometimes even more so.

Thankfully, McGarry knew there was more to these characters than just being the supporting character to the "stars", and in Dare You To, she tells the story of Noah's friend, Beth. She is the perfect character to be next in the line of Pushing the Limits books. In PtL, she was a hard, seemingly unlikeable girl who wanted nothing to do with anyone outside of her little triumvirate of friends. But there were times where she showed the cracks in her exterior and pieces of the girl on the inside showed through. I wanted to know more about Beth and her relationship with Isiah and Noah, and if she was able to move on from the incident with her mother's boyfriend.

This book starts out a short time after Pushing the Limits. Beth is still at her aunt's house and trying to get things in her life back on track, including getting her mom away from her boyfriend and on the road to recovery.

One fateful night, everything changes, and life throws Beth for a loop. She finds herself far from her inner city life, surrounded by people, to whom appearances are everything. And then the "bad" girl from the inner city and the imperfect life meets the golden boy from a prominent family that is the epotime of perfection. McGarry is wonderful at taking those taking the opposite ends of this spectrum and putting them on more even ground. Just because it is shiny on the outside, doesn't mean it isn't rotten within, and vice versa.

I couldn't get enough of this book. I carried it with me everywhere (easy to do on an eReader), and read any chance I got.

With Beth being the centerpoint of the story, we get to see her background, and what happened to make her so jaded at such a young age. She is such a heartbreaking, multidimensional character and the girl that I didn't much care for in PtL due to her treatment of Echo became a sympathetic character that I wanted to see only good things for.

Ryan is the male lead. He is a jock, baseball phenom who has a shot at the majors, and there isn't a dare that he will not take. He doesn't like to lose. Anything. At first he seemed to be a bit cocky, and I almost didn't know what I was going to think of him, or if I would even like him, but he had totally proved himself by the middle of the book, and he is definitely book boyfriend material.

With the alternating points of view between Beth and Ryan, McGarry shows how people from such different worlds can be walking such a parallel path.

I cannot recommend this book enough. I even thought it was better than Pushing the Limits, which I thought was fantastic.
I wish there was a way to give it more than 5 stars!

About the author:
KATIE MCGARRY was a teenager during the age of grunge and boy bands and remembers those years as the best and worst of her life. She is a lover of music, happy endings, and reality television, and is a secret University of Kentucky basketball fan.

Katie would love to hear from her readers. Contact her via her website,, follow her on Twitter @KatieMcGarry, or become a fan on Facebook and Goodreads.


  1. Dude. I've been dying for this one since I read the first chapter at the end of Pushing the Limits last year. So glad to hear you loved it!

    RealSteph at The Fake Steph Dot Com

  2. Love when sequels outshine the first books! I will have to take on this series sometime soon. Glad you enjoyed them both!

  3. I have been waiting for this book to come out! I want to know Beth's story.



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