Friday, September 7, 2012

Pushing the Limits Review + Giveaway

"My father is a control freak, I hate my stepmother, my brother is dead and my mother has...welll...issues. How do you think I am doing?" - opening line of Pushing the Limits

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. Echo and Noah couldn’t be more different, but they find themselves united by a common goal: to sneak into their court- ordered social worker’s case files in order to learn the truth about themselves and their families. What they didn’t count on is falling in love -- and now 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.

Wow.  Okay.  I've been following reviews for this book and everyone just RAVES about it. Seriously, 5 stars on Goodreads and lots of love.  I can totally see the love for the story line and the characters.  McGarry is a fantastic writer who created a powerful story that will break your heart but in the next beat, give you hope that broken hearts can mend.  I love the imagery of the scars, both seen and unseen.  So many of us carry those unseen scars and thank heavens for the people who look deep enough to see them and love us anyway.

There are just mounds of problems presented in this book.  The social scene of high school, drug use, minor alcohol use, the foster care system, mental illness, suicide, death, marital affairs, teenage sex... It is at times overwhelming that so many issues were hit so hard.  But I also recognize that any and all of those issues belong to so many of us.  We can all connect in some way with Echo and Noah.  (awesome names, btw)

While I can recognize the value of the message and even appreciate much of this book I would be lying if I said that I loved it.  My biggest problem with the book was the swearing.  I was honestly floored by the extreme use of the F word.  I counted 64 times that the F word was used.  64!  Are you kidding me?  In one book?  For young adults ages 15-25?  I'm sorry, but I think that is insane.  I know that the author was portraying a character and he was rough around the edges.  I know what she was going for.  I still think the repeated swearing was overboard.  For me, it completely detracted from the story.  Now, before I get tons of hate comments, I know that this is MY OPINION and not necessarily shared by everyone else.  I know that I am in a minority as to my offense at swearing.  But, this is the forum to share my opinion and I have people who follow my reviews that would care to know this.  Especially if their kids are thinking of reading this book.  Along with the F word, every other swear word was used, many, many times.  There was also frequent profanity (God or Jesus used as an exclamation).

Harlequin Teen is generously offering up a copy of this book to one reader.  The giveaway is for US/CAN only.  If you've been dying to read this, now is your chance!

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Here is a look at the trailer of Pushing the Limits
And here are some purchase links if you are interested:
Barnes & Noble
Indie Bound
Check out Katie's website:
About author Katie McGarry:
Katie McGarry was a teenager during the age of grunge and boy bands and she remembers those years as the best and worst of her life. She is a lover of music, happy endings and reality television, and is a secret University of Kentucky basketball fan.

Writing has given Katie an excuse to pursue her passions. Research for her books has provided her with the amazing opportunity to train with baseball players, ride along in a drag car at ninety-six miles per hour and experience boxing and mixed martial arts. Katie loves to visit schools and talk to teenagers about her research, writing and the truth that no dream is out of reach.


  1. I loved this book! (I read it on my nook when it first cake out) What a great story!

    My favorite name for a character? Probably Pippi from Pippi Longstocking. I always wanted to BE Pippi, she had great adventures!!!!

  2. Favorite character name. Hmm..... this is tough. Jocelyn. I am currently reading On Dublin Street by Samantha Young.

  3. I'm around teens a lot, working in a high school. Unfortunately, this is realistic for a lot of them, and I'm not just talking about the "bad" kids. Walking down the hall during break,a nd you will hear it several times. I'm sure many of these teens say that word 64 times a day! I don't even remember the swearing in this book, but I tend to ignore that when reading. Which is unfortunate when people ask me about a certain book and the swearing. But, in this situation, I think it's realistic, and that's why I didn't notice it. Great review!

  4. Thanks, Annette, for taking the time to leave a comment. I appreciate it.

  5. I really loved the opening sentence but ultimately found the book too angsty for me. I like a more humorous book that isn't stuffed with every issue you could imagine and then some.

    1. Yeah, this book did have angsty going on! And a lot of issues. It was a hard hit on pretty much every front. Thank you for commenting and for stopping by. :)

  6. I'm so sorry to comment here, but I can't figure out how else to get in touch with you. (It's late and the answer is probably very obvious but I'm just not seeing it due to brain tiredness.) I'd love to contact you about reviewing or doing a giveaway of my new book coming out in October. What's the best way to get in touch with you? Thanks, and again, sorry for doing this here!

  7. I love the name Schulyer from the Blue Bloods series

  8. I love the name Michiru is the Sailor Moon series.

  9. I love the name Lestat from The Vampire Chronicles <3

    Mary DeBorde M.A.D.

  10. I totally love Jace and Clary from TMI, their names are so cool!

  11. Ava.
    One of my all time favs!
    Might name a daughter Ava :D

  12. that in a book a few years ago and loved it! Named my daughter Gracyn :)

  13. Constance Contraire from the Mysterious Benedict Society. Her name describes her perfectly :)

  14. Pushing the Limits my favorite YA after Perfect Chemistry and I like name character especially Echo :D

  15. A lot of people seem to enjoy this book & I'm really looking forward to reading it. I really want to read more coming of age stories! :) I haven't read Perfect Chemistry, but I'm adding it to the list. Great review.

  16. I loved this book so much!
    I love the name Echo and Jace from Mortal Instruments. :D


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