July 30, 2012
Be sure to enter the giveaway found at the end of the post
and check out the Q & A with Katie McGarry!
“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.
Pushing The Limits by Katie McGarry
Publish Date: July 31, 2012
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
** This book was provided to us by the publisher for an honest review.
We were no way paid for our opinion **
I heard the hype surround Pushing The Limits by Katie McGarry and I needed to know what the what was all about! Of course sometimes when books are totally hyped up, my biggest worry is that the book will not live up to said hype.
Yah, Pushing The Limits totally lived up to the hype and totally exceeded my expectations. It was a book that brought out all my emotions. It was a rollercoaster ride of epic emotional proportions. I hugged this book so many times while I was reading it that my family seriously thought there was something wrong with me. I didn’t want to let go! I didn’t want it to end! I craved it to the very core. I didn’t want to do anything else but read the story of Echo and Noah.
Imagine having something so tragic and mind blowing happen to you, and not remembering any of it. For main character, Echo Emerson, that is a nightmare that she is living. One day Echo is one of the most popular girls in school dating one of the most popular boys at school, and the next day she’s a social outcast, shunned by the very people she trusted, now avoiding everyone and everything. Echo literally bears the scars of her past on her hands and arms and doesn’t remember the events that happened on that tragic night with her mother which caused those scars. After seeing multiple social workers/counsellors who are trying to help her remember what happened and have failed, Echo has been assigned a new counsellor, Mrs. Collins, who helps Echo in more ways than she knows.
Echo’s not the only one who has a past that haunts them. Enter sexy, badass, playboy Noah. Noah is seen as one of the social rejects at school. After the death of his parents, Noah and his two younger brothers are thrown into the social system. Unfortunately, Noah’s various foster families have been hell on earth. Due to an altercation involving a previous foster dad, Noah is restricted in seeing his little brothers who have been placed in a different foster home together. All Noah wants is for his family to be together again. That’s when the system decides that Noah must meet with Mrs. Collins to deal with his issues and possible help him with his brothers.
The stars have aligned and Echo and Noah are thrown together defying their friends and social status. And it’s with each other that they both find the strength to face the problems that they have deep in their hearts and souls. But will their love for each other be enough?
The story of Echo and Noah is a love story that I will never forget. There was so much raw emotion poured into the pages of this book that it burrows deep into your mind and refuses to leave. Not that I want it to. I know that this book will be one of my most favorite reads of all times. I cried, I laughed, and quite honestly, I was grinning like a mad fool through a majority of this book! The emotional parts that caused me to use my ever present tissues were so beautifully written and were truly unforgettable moments.
Author, Katie McGarry, breathed in so much life in to all the characters in Pushing The Limits, but especially when it came down to Echo and Noah. I mean, come one! Noah is one swoon worthy leading male. His coy, playful demeanor had me crushing on him all over the place. The way he spoke, his actions, his bad boy ways, and most definitely his sweetness won him over time and time again, and easily placed him as a must have book boyfriend.
You can’t help but love Noah and Echo to pieces! To want to be in their lives and see what the next day will bring them. To be able to bear witness to the very ghosts that haunt them felt like I was peering into a window of someone else’s very personal life. That I was allowed a glimpse into their lives, and watch them grow from their problems.
This beautiful coming of age story was a truly touching read that I feel all book lovers should read and experience for themselves. Pushing The Limits is a story that will always hold a special place in your heart. An unforgettable love story… Please let there be a movie…please let there be a movie!
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A Q&A With Katie McGarry
Q: What was your inspiration for writing Pushing the Limits?
A: I had two main inspirations: One, I knew from the beginning that I wanted to write a story in which my characters felt strong enough to leave their pasts behind and create new futures for themselves. The first scene I ever saw in my mind was Echo and Noah leaving town after graduation. Two, I wanted to write two characters who were facing over- whelming issues and who, through battling these issues, found hope at the end of their journey.
Q: How did you come up with Echo’s name?
A: Echo went through several name changes as I wrote the manuscript. For a while, she had a very normal name, but it alwaysfelt off. It wasn’t until I looked at Echo from her mother’s point of view that I found her name. Echo’s mother loved Greek mythology so it made perfect sense that she would name her children after the myths. I read several Greek myths and the moment I found Echo’s, I fell in love. Echo, to me, was the girl who lost her voice. Thankfully, she finds it by the end.
Q: Which character is the most “like” you?
A: All of them. I gave each character a piece of me (though some have larger slices of me than others). Overall, I’d say I’m a strange combination of Echo, Lila and Beth. Echo has my need to please, Lila has my unfailing loyalty to my friends and Beth encompasses my insecurities.
Q: Did you experience friendships with Grace types when you were in high school?
A: Yes. And the more people have read this story, the more this question comes up. Grace has struck a stronger nerve in people than I ever would have imagined. It seems most of us have unfortunately experienced a relationship where a person wants to “like” you and wants “be your friend,” but only if it serves their needs. In case anyone is wondering, that isn’t friendship.
Q: Are there any parts of the story you feel particularly close to?
A: Yes. The relationship between Noah, Isaiah and Beth. Beyond my parents and sister, my nearest family members were over fourteen hours away. My friends became my family. The people I grew up with were more than people I watched movies with or talked to occasionally on the phone. These were people with whom I shared life’s most devastating moments, but also my hardest laughs. These were people who I would have willingly died for and I know they would have done the same for me. They shared my triumphs with smiles on their faces and congratulatory hugs. They held me when I cried and offered to beat up whoever hurt my feelings. These were also the same people who were more than happy to get in my face if they thought I was making a wrong decision.
Q: Did anything that happens to Echo happen to you?
A: Sort of. I was bitten by a dog when I was in second grade and repressed the memory. It felt very strange to have no memory of an incident that other people knew about. It was even stranger to have injuries and not have an inkling where they came from. In college, I finally remembered the incident when a dog lunged at me. I relived the horrible event and sort of “woke up” a few minutes later to find myself surrounded by people I loved. Even though I “remember” the incident, I still don’t remember the whole thing. I only see still frames in my mind and there is no blood in any of the memories.
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.
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