ARC Review: Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry

4:59 PM

Title: Pushing the Limits

Author: Katie McGarry
Publisher:  Harlequin Teen
Publication date: July 31, 2012
How I got the copy: Netgalley (Thank you!) in exchange for an honest review

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.

-   Characters that feel so real
-   Both Noah and Echo's Point of View
-   Mystery, relationships, trust, and more

It seems like every YA Contemp these days is about a girl who has forgotten or blocked her past memories (One Moment, Where it Began, etc.)  And I was beginning to get very bored of it so of course I was skeptical going into this one.  Let me tell you, that wariness was lost after about two chapters.  I couldn't stop reading.  Echo not remembering a traumatic event in her past really added mystery to the story.  Unlike One Moment where we already kind of know what happened, in this story we go on the journey of figuring it out with Echo.  

She was such a real character that I found myself so emotional along with her.  Although, I thought her name was weird a first, it surprisingly fit her as I got to know more about her.  She's really unique, yet so normal.  She wants to appease her dad, she hates her "stepmom", she misses her brother, and she is a social outcast because of the scars on her arm (which, in my opinion, she brought that social outcast status upon herself).  I loved watching her grow as a character and really discover who she was.

Noah...just thinking about this character makes me smile.  He's like the epitome of what every girl wants in a guy.  He's strong and kind of rebellious, yet he's vulnerable and loves his family.  Oh and he has tattoos.  He also really grows as a character and I think it was great how together he and Echo helped each other.  I also loved reading in his POV every few chapters.  Although, the eARC I had didn't tell you when the point of view was switching, so it was kind of confusing at times.  I'm sure the finished copy will tell you though.

The guidance counselor was a character that also stuck with me.  As someone who has mentored and taught children for the past six years, it was nice to finally see a teacher/counselor portrayed as many really are, caring, understanding, and full of good intentions.  I feel like most books make teachers out to be cruel, but most aren't!

The only thing I didn't really get is how Echo would just get floods of memory back at one time.  She'd just be standing there and then pow she'd remember something, fall to the floor, and practically seize.  Okay, maybe that's an exaggeration, but still, I wondered if that's how recovering memory really is.  Other than that I thought this book was flawless and recommend it to everyone!  If you like Simone Elekes books (like Leaving Paradise) you should definitely try this one!

If  you are planning on reading this and want someone to discuss it with there is a Read Along going on that starts tomorrow!  I'll probably participate even though I've already read it.  Click the picture above.

Have you read this yet? What did you think?
If not are you going to?

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