Review: Dare You To by Katie McGarry
Dare You To by Katie McGarry
May 28, 2013
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…
Katie McGarry continues to astound me with her one-of-a-kind storytelling in her Pushing the Limits series. Her ability to suck readers in with just a few words never fails. The amount of emotions that I experienced while reading made me feel like I was actually just as involved with the outcome as Beth and Ryan. In a way, I was. I have become so invested in Katie’s characters that I feel like we’re good friends. She makes them so lifelike and realistic that I just can’t help it!
Beth is full of anger and hurt at the beginning of DARE YOU TO. Her family life is a wreck and her friendship with Isaiah and Noah seems to be falling apart in her eyes thanks to Echo. She hides from her reality with drugs and alcohol, which only makes things worse. I didn’t think I could ever feel so bad for Beth, but I did. This girl’s life pretty much sucks up until the point when she moves in with her uncle. She doesn’t realize how much good it’s going to do for her and her life, or how it will introduce her to a world where she doesn’t have to sacrifice so much of herself for her mother. My heart kept breaking for Beth the more I got to know her and the girl that she used to be. She deserves the happiness that she gets when Ryan enters the picture. It’s not an easy relationship at all, but it’s the best one she will ever experience.
Ryan is just as broken as Beth, only he is better at hiding it from the world. Ryan has one of the biggest hearts I’ve ever seen, and he and Beth are just what each other needs to begin to heal. Ryan’s love of baseball and writing blossoms off the pages. When he gets involved in something, he puts all himself into it and does whatever it takes to be the best at it. While he doesn’t see himself falling for the angry and hardened Beth, somehow it happens and he gives all that he can in order to make it work. Beth doesn’t stand a chance against Ryan’s sheer determination or his huge heart. Ryan sold me from the moment he was dared to ask Beth out. He’s funny, adorably sweet, strong, and hot to boot! I loved seeing him open up and begin to see how his life could be if he stopped listening to what his parents told him to do. His slow acceptance of Beth as he learns who she is inside made my heart flutter! Ryan is the perfect match for Beth, and I hope other readers see it, too.
I was one of those readers that wasn’t quite sure just how the author would pull off a relationship that was not Isaiah and Beth, but she sure proved me wrong. Ryan and Beth have such a strong emotional and physical bond with each other that it’s hard not to ship them. And Isaiah and Beth…I realized just how bad they would be for each other. They aren’t meant to be together. Isaiah gives in too easily, and they are more like brother and sister than anything. While some scenes involving Beth and Isaiah tore my heart apart, I knew they had to happen. Sad but true. Thank you for wrapping up their relationship as best as you could, Katie. You made it as easy as you could on us readers who love Isaiah with all our hearts.
DARE YOU TO is a beautifully tragic contemporary that is sure to win readers over within just a few pages. If you haven’t yet experienced the magic that is Katie McGarry’s writing, I am begging you to jump on board! Fans of all genres are going to fall in love with everything about the Pushing the Limits series.