Thursday, July 26, 2012

Review: Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry

Book: Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry
Genre: Young Adult / Contemporary Realistic Fiction
Buy A Copy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository
Available Formats: Ebook | Hardcover
Publication Date: July 31st, 2012 Harlequin Teen
How Did I Get This Book: For Review
First Sentence: "My father is a control freak, I hate my stepmother, my brother is dead and my mother has... well... issues. How do you think I'm doing?"
So wrong for each other...and yet so right.

No one knows what happened the night Echo Emerson went from popular girl with jock boyfriend to gossiped-about outsider with "freaky" scars on her arms. Even Echo can't remember the whole truth of that horrible night. All she knows is that she wants everything to go back to normal. But when Noah Hutchins, the smoking-hot, girl-using loner in the black leather jacket, explodes into her life with his tough attitude and surprising understanding, Echo's world shifts in ways she could never have imagined. They should have nothing in common. And with the secrets they both keep, being together is pretty much impossible.Yet the crazy attraction between them refuses to go away. And Echo has to ask herself just how far they can push the limits and what she'll risk for the one guy who might teach her how to love again.

When we met Echo, she's simply broken. She doesn't live her life; she walks around in a cloud of misery. She is separate from everyone and everything in her life, that is until she meets Noah. Noah is going through quite a bit as well; a few years ago his parents died in a house fire and entered the foster system. He's had a rough go of it and is having a difficult time getting his life back on track.

Much like the main characters, as the reader, you experience a complete range of emotions in regards to the other characters. You think you have your mind set about how you feel about them and then suddenly everything changes. I loved this. McGarry was able to not only get you to feel strongly about things, but was able to convince you that you were wrong in the end. I don't know about you, but this rarely happens to me when I'm reading. I get a feel for characters or situations in my mind and then I stick to it. I never really flip-flop about my decisions, I stick to my guns to the end. So the fact that by the end of the book my mind, just like the Echo's and Noah's, had been changed really impressed me.

I loved the dual narration of the book. McGarry flips back and forth from the perspective's of both Echo and Noah. They both had distinct, likable voices that kept me interested in their separate stories as well as their combined relationship. That being said, the main issue I had with this book was rooted in Noah's narration. He is constantly referring to Echo as a siren, nymph/goddess and it just didn't work for me. I mean, I can't say for sure, but I cannot imagine a teenage boy running around thinking those things. Unless of course this was a fantasy and she actually was a mythological creature.

That being said, I felt the book seem to drag a bit. It's not that I found it boring, it's just that it felt long. I was interested in what McGarry had to say, it just felt drawn out at times.

Favorite Quotes
My father was a strange combination of drill instructor and Alice's white rabbit: he always had someplace important to go and enjoyed bossing everyone else around.
His dark eyes searched mine and then moved down to inspect the rest of my body. I should tell him to stop or make a sarcastic comment or at least feel degraded, but none of that happened.
It doesn't get any better," I said. "The pain. The wounds scab over and you don't always feel like a knife is slashing through you. But when you least expect it, the pain flashes to remind you you'll never be the same."
Luke used to give me butterflies. Noah spawned mutant pterodactyls. 
Dizzy from nerves, I swayed to the right. Noah took a small step toward me while guiding me into him using gentle pressure on my back. I shouldn't be touching him, but I wanted to hear the answer and I needed someone to lean on. Just one time - this one moment only - I would rely on him.
There are edges around the black and every now and then a flash of color streaks out of the gray.
I should have thrown her over my shoulder and dragged her from the gym. Instead, like an idiot, I'd given her the choice. 
Not sure how I felt about Antonio and Echo, I linked my fingers with hers. Antonio cocked a surprised eyebrow. Damn straight,bro. I did just mark my territory. 
I was done being controlled.
The worst type of crying wasn't the kind everyone could see - the wailing on street corners, the tearing at clothes. No, the worst kind happened when your soul wept and no matter what you did, there was no way to comfort it.

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