By Katie McGarry
Expected Release Date: May 28, 2013
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Source: HarlequinTeen through NetGalley
Links: Amazon / Barnes & Noble / Goodreads / IndieBound
My rating: 4 stars out 5 stars
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 sen her mother to jail and seventeen-year-old Beth who knows where. So she protects her mom at all costs. Until the days 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 shared 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 become 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 if daring herself to want it all...
Okay, I have to admit that I wasn't sure if I was going to like this book or not. Beth was not a character I really cared about. In Pushing the Limits, I always hated how she treated Echo, even Noah at times. She came off as being very abrasive, and I wasn't sure if I could handle reading a whole book with her as the main character. However, I decided to give her a chance to explain herself and to withhold my judgement.
Beth was definitely an interesting and complex character and I found myself going back and forth throughout the whole book wondering how I felt about her. I came to understand and sympathize her, but she is not a favorite heroine of mine. But I think that's okay. Knowing Beth, she would hate to be put on the same spotlight as every other beloved heroine and would try her hardest to do the exact opposite of what every one is doing.
Learning about Beth's life and everything that she went through was a definite eye opener and it explained why Beth is the way she is. She has some crazy trust issues that stems from people always leaving her and she has no sense of self-worth. She doesn't believe that she deserves more in life and it caused me to mentally yell at Beth a lot. I felt like I was Beth's life coach at times. I wanted her believe in her worth and that she is the only one who determines her worth. I was also very dismayed at how Beth treated Scott, Isaiah and Ryan. Beth quickly passed judgement on them even though she hates when people do that to her. And she never gave them a chance to explain until it was too late.
Ryan, on the other hand, is the sweetest guy I have read in a while. He had me swooning during certain parts throughout the book but especially during this part:
"I hold the bottle out into the rain and watch as the steady flow slowly fills it. When there is enough, enough that Beth can clearly see, I close the bottle and hand it to her.
She raised a skeptical eyebrow, but accepts the bottle.
"It's our rain, Beth."
Her head barely shakes to show her confusion while I rub the back of neck and search for my courage. "I told you I loved you in this rain and when you doubt my words, I want you to look at this bottle."
I found myself really enjoying getting to know Ryan. When I first heard about this book, I was confused because I thought it was supposed to be a Beth and Isaiah story and I was a little hesitant about this love interest that we didn't know. However, after reading the book and getting to know Ryan, it really show us that he is the best guy for Beth. For her to grow and to be her true self.
That is not to say that I wasn't heartbroken for Isaiah. I was really bothered by how Beth treated him, considering that he is her best friend. I was so angry at her and wouldn't let go of that anger until she talked and apologized to him. Friendship is a two-way street and she needed to be honest with him. I'm looking forward to reading his book, Crash into You, and see if he gets his happy ending, too.
After everything that happened, I do admit that I enjoyed Dare You To a lot more than Pushing the Limits. Katie McGarry managed to create a book where I wasn't a big fan of the main character but I grew to like and gain a new level of respect for. I believe that shows how good of a writer McGarry really is and I can't wait to see what else she has up her sleeves.