Title: Dare You To
Author: Katie McGarry
Series: Pushing the Limits, book 2
Genre: YA, Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Source: Review copy from publisher
“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....”
Dare You To is the second book in the Pushing the Limits series by Katie McGarry.
Dare You To starts couple of months after the events in Pushing the Limits (first book in the series).
Beth Risk is arrested after taking the blame for something her mother did. What Beth wasn’t expecting was to be bailed by the uncle (Scott) she hasn’t seen in many years; especially after she resents him for abandoning her many years ago when he left her to play professional baseball and never looked back.
Now Scott is her legal guardian and she’s forced to move with him and his wife to a rural area far from her mother and her best friends Noah and Isaiah.
Apart from baseball Ryan Stone loves dares and loves even more to win them. He still hasn’t recovered from the dare he lost to the Skater girl in a Taco Bell, the only girl that didn’t give him her number.
Ryan can’t believe that his baseball hero, Scott Risk, is living in his town and even more he can’t believe that Skater girl is his niece. He still has a chance to get her number and win the dare.
Beth hates living with Scott and her presumptuous wife, she hates her new house and her new school and if that wasn’t enough the jock that asked for her number is her classmate. Ryan is showing interest in her but she knows for experience that golden boys don’t go for girls like her, they only want one thing and she’s not willing to go through that again.
What started as a dare has come to mean much more to Ryan. Beth is intriguing and makes him want to be better and honest about his not-so perfect life.
Beth and Ryan may find what they are looking for in life in the arms of the other if they only are willing to believe and strong enough to take a chance in love.
I started to read Dare You To without reading the blurb. After reading Pushing the Limits I was sure that this was going to be Beth and Isaiah’s book, but to my great surprise it wasn’t. To say I was surprise by this is an understatement. Still, I gave the benefit of the doubt to Mrs. McGarry and carry on reading, I’m very glad I did just that.
Beth is a difficult character to like and to connect with. Her life and mine couldn’t be more different so it was a little bit tough to put myself in her shoes and understand her behavior. Beth comes as a moody bitchy girl with enough anger to feed a small town. Her life has been a very difficult one, her mother is an alcoholic and drug addict with a perch for abusive men. Since Beth can remember she has been the one taking care of her mother not the other way around. She’s not used to people caring for her and now that Scott has come back to her life she doesn’t know what to do or what to feel. The only thing she can think of is that she’s far from her mom and her mom needs her to survive.
My heart really hurt for her, but at the same time I wanted her to open her eyes and realize that her mom didn’t have salvation and if Beth continue trying to save her she was going to go under along with her.
Ryan was a little too perfect and on the beginning he was also a bit weak regarding his family problems. I understand he has lived a sheltered life and for him seeing beyond what was in front of him wasn’t that easy, until Beth came to his life and show him there was more to life than just black and white.
I really liked how he stuck to Beth despite her not so charming personality. I loved how he saw the real Beth under all the gothic/emo façade she used to protect her heart.
The romance was believable because it wasn’t rushed; it was developed with time and after sharing different experiences. Will it be a long lasting love? I really don’t know, only time will tell.
I really liked that we see Noah and Echo, they don’t have a lot of page time but in the little we see them is clear they are still very much in love and together.
Isaiah broke my heart; he had silently loved Beth for years and in a second he lost her to a jock. He not only lost the girl he loved but also his best friend. The only good thing that gave me some peace regarding him is that next book, Crash Into You, will be his book. I really hope he gets the HEA he so much deserves.
In Dare You To we meet new characters, like Beth’s uncle Scott. My heart went to him; he really loved Beth and wanted the best for her. I loved how protective he was of her and how he gave her what she needed, understanding, love and a house with rules. I didn’t like his wife, Allison, she was self-absorbed and I didn’t try to help Beth once. At the end she kind of came around but it was almost too late for me to like her.
Beth’s mom is a disaster, she was more like a child than an adult, and it wasn’t fair to Beth one bit. The saddest part about her is that mothers like her really exist.
We also meet Ryan’s friends from school; they are fun and brought more to the story, especially Lace which became Beth’s friend and protector.
Dare You To is a book full of angst, it’s also a book about second chances and the power of love, one that will have you laughing, crying and hoping for the better future Beth and Ryan deserve.
I loved this book and I recommend you to read it. Dare You To can be read as a stand-alone but I recommend you to read Pushing the Limits first not only to get the whole Beth’s experience but also because Pushing the Limits is an amazing book.
My Verdict: 4 ½ Paws
Other books in the series
Dare You To
Crash Into You (November 26th)
Other reviews Goodreads