Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Review: Pushing the Limits

Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Release Date: July 31, 2012
Page Count: 384
Will Appeal To: Romance lovers, anyone interested in psychology
Favorite Quotes:
  • "If she grasped anything, it would be me. My thumb worked its way between her fingers and her sleeve and released her death grip on the material. I wrapped my fingers around Echo's fragile hand. Touching Echo felt like home."
  • "'I loved her, Echo. She was that someone that tilted my universe.'"
  • "The worst type of crying wasn't the kind everyone could see-- the wailing on street corners, the tearing at clothes. No, the worst kind happened when your soul wept and no matter what you did, there was no way to comfort it. A section withered and became a scar on the part of your soul that survived. For people like me and Echo, our souls contained more scar tissue than life."
Boy and girl are seeing same school social worker. Noah is trying to gain custody of his brothers and must turn around his bad boy act so a judge will grant him said custody. Echo has become a social pariah after an incident years prior that resulted in raised white and red scars up the lengths of her arms. Everyone thinks she tried to commit suicide or cut herself. She knows her bipolar mother had something to do with it, but her brain has repressed the memories. Both broken souls, the two work on finding out what's in their files, which should ultimately lead to answers and then happiness. Along the way, they find out that each of them needs the other in more ways than one. 
Why You Must Read This:
1. The dual points of view add such dimension to the story. Yes, the boy/girl switcheroo has been super popular as of late, but I'm not tired of it, especially not with characters like this. I wouldn't have minded if it was all in Noah's POV; however, Echo's story is so important, and one of her discoveries in the book made me tear up. One emotional ride. I felt what the characters felt as they learned new information.  
2. Characters are believable! Grace is a minor character, but that girl in school who's so concerned with her image that she has "public friends" and "private friends." Loved this element of realism. Noah is wonderful to watch as he changes from I-could-care-less-that-I'm-getting-high to a guy who's falling hard and fast for a girl who is complicated. He's a good guy at heart but a product of the foster system. And Mrs. Collins-- what a wonderful adult influence in both their lives. Love that she shows up in sweats and band t-shirts occasionally! Every single character has flaws.
3. Sexual tension. The need for Noah to control himself literally seeped through the pages!

4. Katie McGarry seriously understands how a teen's mind works. I became fully absorbed in both narratives and remembered how hard high school was and how unaccepting people can be. I could relate to so many parts of the story.
5. I felt a true sense of satisfaction at the end (except that I wanted it to go on longer!).
Things That Bugged Me:
1. Couldn't get on board with Noah calling Echo "baby." Just couldn't imagine him saying it after getting to know his character, but this is a super minor thing that I'm sure others disagree on. I wish it was a different pet name!
2. Echo had an awful lot of "pterodactyls" flying in her stomach. The first time I thought it was a cool metaphor. The third time I was sick of seeing it, but I do realize that certain people have a thing they say or think constantly.
3. I didn't mark many favorite quotes. The writing is super smooth and relatable but I wanted a few more things to really stick with me.
AND...with such minor flaws, how can you not pick up this book that everyone's already raving about? I CANNOT WAIT TO READ BETH'S STORY: DARE YOU TO.
Also, at the end of the book, there's a really cool playlist where McGarry reveals what songs she used for kiss scenes, which ones she used to get into character for Noah, Echo, and what shaped the novel as a whole.
*Copy of novel provided by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

1 comment:

Erin W. said...

I can't to read the companion novel as well. I really LOVED this book more than I thought I would. The characters, the storyline . . . the author really hit the mark for me. Great review!