Title: Dare You To by Kathie McGarry
Published: Mary 28th, 2013 by Harlequin Teen
Source: Finished copy from BEA
Format: Hard cover
Genre: Contemporary romance
Age group: Young adult
Challenge(s): Finish the Series, TBR
Grade rate: B
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....
Pushing the Limits was one of my favorite reads of last year. I got Dare You To at BEA this year (signed and everything!) and it took me way too long to read it. In order to make myself read it I signed up for the blog tour of Crash Into You (come back tomorrow for that review and an awesome giveaway!) I think my hesitation was due to the fact that this is Beth’s story and I didn’t particularly liked her in Pushing the Limits. Thankfully, it seems impossible for Ms. McGarry to write a ‘bad’ book.
Dare You To is, as the title suggests, about daring to do new things, daring to believe that there is something better, daring to love even if you’re afraid. Also, there are some dares in the story.
Beth is very hard to like. She appears to be strong, uncivilized, rude, fearless, and this façade hides her true self. She’s had a really hard life and has been in situations that no child should be in; I felt the horror of her life and the sense of unfairness of it all. She took on too much responsibility and her need to keep her mom safe cost her a lot. I also didn’t like the way things went down with Isaiah. I think Beth was unreasonable with him and Noah.
Even though Beth saw her uncle as a traitor and resented his intervention, it was the best thing that could have happen to her. She was able to find a savior and a second chance at a better life.
Now, on to Ryan. I loved Ryan. He’s a jock and has, in appearance a golden, perfect life. He’s talented in both the sport and writing and he’s conflicted on what to do after high school. He has a tight group of friends that happen to love dares. That’s how he meets Beth, because he’s dared to get her phone number. Beth and Ryan’s relationship evolves slowly. Initially, they detest each other, but become friends and shortly after, more than that. I love that Ryan didn’t allow Beth to run away or hide her feelings and thoughts. They dare each other to be better and to love each other in the best way they could.
The writing is as good and amazing as it was in Pushing the Limits. However, for more that I tried, I just couldn’t make myself like Beth. I understand her and the awful life that she had, but I just can’t make myself like her. I think that by the end of the book I was able to see her more through Ryan’s eyes. Another think that I don’t particularly like is reading about baseball, but that’s just me.
Come visit again tomorrow for my review of Crash Into You, which is Isaiah’s story and the next companion book in the series.
About the cover – I’m not a fan of this cover either. The models do like similar to what I imagined the characters to look like, but the situation doesn’t seem real (or applicable to the book).