Friday, July 20, 2012

Review: Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry

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Review: Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry
Pushing the Limits
Katie McGarry
Series: Pushing the Limits #2
Genre: Contemporary, YA
Publication date: July 31st 2012
by Harlequin Teen

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So wrong for each other...and yet so right.

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.
-A copy was provided by Harlequin Teen for review-
It’s no secret that this book has been getting insane reviews. Being the persistent black sheep that I am, I was incredibly wary of the hype it was garnering, certain that it would fail to impress me. Oh boy. Oh freaking boy!! Was I ever wrong. I loved this so hard!

Echo and Noah… Echo. Noah. Nocho?

Echo has been through an extremely distressing, life altering ordeal because of which she’s suffering post-traumatic stress, with the worst side effect being memory loss. She doesn’t remember what happened. All she has are the scars. From popular to outsider, Echo’s troubled state-of-mind is harsh and unstable. One of the best character development I’ve read, she made me a part of her. With only the span of a few pages, she had me immersed in her world, in her heart and soul. Every layer of her being is gradually being laid out for us to become equally mesmerized and perplexed by. Her scars, her babysitter-turned-stepmother, her dead brother, along with her PTSD, she has the world on her shoulders and I was right there alongside her, sharing the weight.

With an equally burdened soul, Noah only wants two things: Jacob, and Tyler. After his parents died in a fire, the three brothers have been in the foster system and Noah wants nothing more than his family back together. The emotions in his perspective begin from our very first glance into his melancholy life. His relationship with his brothers brought tears to my eyes, pulling me in wholeheartedly. He may be tortured and angry – the perfect bad boy image -, yet, underneath his tough exterior he’s a loving, caring person who would move heaven and earth for those boys, and, eventually, for Echo. This is a wonderful example of a perfectly woven dual perspective. Both characters are highly vivid, evoking powerful emotions that truly connect the reader to each character. Sketching them one page at a time.

Romantic. Passionate. Frustrating. Filled to the brink with chemistry. The love story in Pushing the Limits is raw. This is true love at its purest form, with sacrifices and compromises, incredible obstacles, and learning to trust without holding back. Like true love, it’s not easy, and it’s not always painless. We’re dealing with two damaged individuals who need to find themselves before they let themselves find each other. Covering a lot more ground than the love story itself, we get intense, emotional ups and downs that just about gave me heart palpitations. While reading, I quickly lost myself in this incredibly enchanting story, experiencing a multitude of complex emotions. By the time I put this book down, I had a heavy heart and a set smile.

Combining love and loss, friendship and family, the unfairness of life and the determination to overcome it, Pushing the Limits is a book that is not only to be read, but cherished. This is one gem that shines!

5 Stars
5 Hot Espressos

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Canadian blogger, wife, mother, coffee lover, and sarcastic at heart! She has had a love for all things bookish since before Amazon and eReaders existed *le gasp*. You can also find her organizing tours and other fun things at Xpresso Book Tours.
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52 Responses to “Review: Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry”

  1. Vegan YA Nerds

    I’m so glad you were able to enjoy this, I guess in this case I am one of the few black sheep who didn’t like it very much! πŸ™‚ Great review, G!

  2. Beverley

    Yay!!!! I’m so glad you enjoyed this as much as I did, Giselle and that it was 5 star read for you! I ADORED Echo and Noah and their romance was so smoking-hot!!!

    ‘This is true love at its purest form’ I completely agree! I loved how their relationship was less about the physical (kind of) and more about really loving each other.

    Fab review, Giselle <3

  3. Meg K.

    I absolutely loved this book, too! Echo and Noah were really fleshed-out characters, and even though their stories were both so heartbreaking, Katie McGarry wrote them in a way that made them beautiful at the same time.

    Lovely review, Giselle! πŸ™‚

  4. The Teen Book Guru

    WOW! You too??? I should really pick this up soon. πŸ™‚ I’m so excited and I can’t wait to find out more about Echo and Noah… Everyone seems to have fallen in love with them and their awesome romance. Great review! Thanks for reminding me to read this… I got my request approved on NetGalley, like, two weeks ago and have totally forgotten about it LOL.

  5. Amy

    I freaking loved this book!! It is one of my favorite books I have read this year. Echo and Noah are both such amazing characters. Fabulous review. (Oh, and OMG two 5 espresso reviews in a row?)

  6. Nick

    That’s an absolutely beautiful review, Giselle ! I agree with all your points. πŸ™‚
    Echo and Noah were definitely one of a kind couple.
    Lovely review, Giselle.

  7. Katie @ BlookGirl

    So glad you loved this one, Giselle. I’ve been hearing such good things, which is why I finally requested it last week. Can’t wait to give it a read for myself. I love characters that I can connect with, and it sounds like Pushing the Limits fits the bill!

  8. Natalia Belikov @ Dazzling Reads

    WOOOOOOOOHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! SO freaking glad you loved it as much as I!! hell yeah!! I couldn’t have say it better =D you review kick asses my dear =D
    I felt the same way as you. This book makes you go through so many emotion good lord! and I loved that this story covers so many issues. THe cover may not actually represent everything the book is. It may look like a contemporary love story, but it is so much more!

    mindblowing review Giselle! ^___^
    You have to come see the posts of the Read Along =D we’ll have discussions every about the book every week! I hope you come share your thoguhts =D

    XOXOXOXOXO

  9. Jenni @ Alluring Reads

    Oooh! Love the new feature for this on your slider! I am definitely the black sheep on this one which makes me sad. I can see your point about Noah being possessive because everyone has been taken away from him but for some reason it just did not work for me. You pointed out that it is a split POV with two very distinct voices and that is so true, even reading a copy that didn’t have the names at the top of the chapters I found it very easy to tell when there was a switch. Great review love!

  10. ❀ Vivian

    LOOOOOL, Nocho!! <3
    Wow, this is such a shining review, Giselle! -blinks in the shower of blinding bright light- I’ve heard amazing things about this book, and I’m so looking forward to it even more now! You’re the first to describe the love as “raw”, though, and that sounds incredible! EEE!! So excited to read this one soon! Thanks for another fabulous review!

  11. ❀ Vivian

    LOOOOOL, Nocho!! <3
    Wow, this is such a shining review, Giselle! -blinks in the shower of blinding bright light- I’ve heard amazing things about this book, and I’m so looking forward to it even more now! You’re the first to describe the love as “raw”, though, and that sounds incredible! EEE!! So excited to read this one soon! Thanks for another fabulous review!

  12. ❀ Vivian

    LOOOOOL, Nocho!! <3
    Wow, this is such a shining review, Giselle! -blinks in the shower of blinding bright light- I’ve heard amazing things about this book, and I’m so looking forward to it even more now! You’re the first to describe the love as “raw”, though, and that sounds incredible! EEE!! So excited to read this one soon! Thanks for another fabulous review!

  13. ❀ Vivian

    LOOOOOL, Nocho!! <3
    Wow, this is such a shining review, Giselle! -blinks in the shower of blinding bright light- I’ve heard amazing things about this book, and I’m so looking forward to it even more now! You’re the first to describe the love as “raw”, though, and that sounds incredible! EEE!! So excited to read this one soon! Thanks for another fabulous review!

  14. Danny

    Gosh I am soooo squealing right now seeing that you loved it so much too!!!!! It was everything I want for in a book!! I loved Echo and Noah and they both broke my heart so so many times … Imagine me sniffling and wiping away tears right now..

  15. Camille Picott

    Holy cow, this books sounds sooo good! I love alternating POV, and when it’s done really well, the story can just shine. Sounds like that’s what you found here. Great review!

  16. Jamie Michele

    What are your thoughts on this book for a boy? I’m friends with a young man who would very likely relate to this hero, but he’s mostly into action/adventure books.

  17. Mel - Thedailyprophecy.

    Okay, wow. His book got insane reviews indeed, so normally I’m a bit.. hesitant to read a book. Afraid that it might disappoint me and that I’m the only one :p But your review blew me away. It does sound like a great book, which totally deserves all the praising. If a author can make you connect with a character in a couple of pages, she can write. And the fact that the love story is raw and pure really attracts me.

    Hmm, perhaps I should reconsider my first instinct and read this one.

  18. Giselle

    @Vivian: Yeah I found it was very true, undisguised, realistic, highs and lows, not always easy, plenty of obstacles and sacrifices – that’s what I mean by raw. It’s not a fairytale – always happy and lovey dovey- love. It’s the real deal.

  19. Sam

    There’s always the risk after seeing so many positive reviews that you might end up expecting too much, but I’m glad to see you were still impressed! Wasn’t this so heart-breaking? I cried more times than I am happy to admit but I freaking loved this book. AMAZING review my lovely! You said it all perfectly. πŸ™‚

  20. Candace

    I’m planning to read this Monday. I have heard its crazy emotional so I’m a little scared. But mostly I’m really excited to read it!

  21. Rachel

    I just love this so hard too Giselle! Perfect couple, perfect chemistry, heartbreakingly beautiful read! Brilliant review Giselle. πŸ™‚

  22. Beckie

    Wow this book is popular this week for the linky reviews πŸ™‚ I am reading this book next from my tbr pile and i have read so many reviews of this book but i can’t stop reading them. Everyone are loving it, everyone are gushing about the same things and i am so excited to start reading it. Like you i am worried that given all the hype etc, what if i don’t like it? but i’m pretty sure i will.
    Thank you for sharing this awesome review!! written lovely too.
    New follower πŸ™‚ *waves* LOVE your blog x

  23. Rebecca - Kindle Fever

    Awww, yay! It makes me so happy to see you liking it as well. πŸ˜€ I’m a bit scared I’ll end up all alone on the other side when finally picking it up, just because of my high expectations, but it just sounds so freaking awesome. o: I cannot wait to dig into it!

  24. ashelynn hetland

    such a fabulous review! I’ve heard some amazing things about this one, I just am not sure, ha ha. Like you, I’m weary of hype; but then again, there are some books that were very hyped and I loved them (Unbecoming of Mara Dyer is one of those books.) I’m definitely going to have to read this one ASAP!

  25. Rory

    I’ve been wanting to read this one, but the hold list at my library is taking FOREVER. At least it sounds like it will be worth the wait. Great review!