Sunday, September 30, 2012

BOOK REVIEW: Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry

Date Published: August 3, 2012
"I won't tell anyone, Echo. I promise." Noah tucked a curl behind my ear. It had been so long since someone touched me like he did. Why did it have to be Noah Hutchins? His dark brown eyes shifted to my covered arms. "You didn't do that-did you? It was done to you?" No one ever asked that question. They stared. They whispered. They laughed. But they never asked.
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.


This book left me in an emotional wreck so if you plan to read it, keep some tissues with you because you'll badly need them!
"My father is a control freak, I hate my stepmother, my brother is dead and my mother has...well...issues. How do you think I'm doing?" - Echo
That sentence is the best way to sum up the situation Echo was stuck into. Her life was turned upside down because of unlikely incidents which left her  with physical, emotional, and psychological scars. She can't remember what happened in her accident and she'll do anything just to puzzle all the pieces back. 

On the other hand, we have Noah. He had a perfect life- loving parents and lovely brothers, great school life; until an accident happened which has taken both of his parents' lives. Noah has been into several foster homes, learned how to drink, smoke and take drugs. All he wanted was to protect his brothers. And he'll do anything just to have his brothers back, his family back.

Both of these characters yearned for having a normal life. But normal is very hard to achieve. They have to push through their remaining months of highschool with the help of Mrs. Collins as their new clinical social worker. 

How can these two destroyed souls find ways to heal each other?

I was particularly intrigued with the book since it came out. I saw it in every blog I visited and all have positive reviews. Since I've read a bunch of reviews, I've been expecting alot from the book. And I gladly say, it definitely met my expectations; even way beyond it!

If you've read other reviews of this, you might get tired of reading how people loved it! And I'll say it again, I really, really, really loved the book! 

I didn't have a hard time getting into the main characters. I love the character build-up and how both characters matured. I liked Echo's strong and vulnerable personality. She's from Ms. Popular to Ms. Freak Show. Having someone you love and depend on die is hard as it is. But having a near death experience with no memory of it is a pure torture. I felt every emotion she'd portrayed and I shed a couple of tears because of it. I also liked her artistic side and how I wish her paintings were real. 

I have to admit I'm guilty in terms of liking book bad boys in general and it's not an exemption for this one. Noah is good-looking and sexy but he has an attitude problem. Trusting and loving other people is hard for him so he just plays and never loves. What I love about him is that he has soft sides especially with his brothers. He had a fair share of bad experiences from the past which made him who he is. He loves his brothers tremendously more than himself that he'd sacrifice his youth for them. Who wouldn't love this guy?

I may have loved and hated the other supporting characters but they are important factors that added to the book's awesomeness.  Just to name afew, I liked Mrs. Collins 'cause she's cool. I also liked Lila and Isaiah for being such a true friend for Echo and Noah respectively. 

I have to commend Katy McGarry for doing a great job in creating this book! A debut novel at that! I liked how she's beautifully written the shifting of POVs from Echo to Noah. There's an easy flow of the story, neither fast nor slow, which I truly enjoyed.  

I love reading YA Contemporary pieces as much as I love YA Fantasy/ Paranormal. This is definitely one of the best Contemporary books I've read this year! Highly Recommended!


Memorable Quotes:

"We'd read about sirens in English this fall; Greek mythology bullsh*t about women so beautiful, their voices so enchanting, that men did anything for them. Turned out that mythology crap was real because everytime I saw her, I lost my mind." - Noah

"It doesn't get better. The pain. The wounds scab over and you don't always feel like a knife is slashing through you. But when you least expect it, the pain flashes to remind you you'll never be the same." - Noah

"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 of your soul that survived. For people like me and Echo, our souls contained more scar tissue than life." - Noah

"I love you enough to never make you choose." - Echo

"Because growing up means making tough choices, and doing the right thing doesn't necessarily mean doing the thing that feels good." - Mrs. Collins

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