August 2, 2014

Review: Take Me On by Katie McGarry


Acclaimed author Katie McGarry returns with the knockout new story of two high school seniors who are about to learn what winning really means.

Champion kickboxer Haley swore she’d never set foot in the ring again after one tragic night. But then the guy she can’t stop thinking about accepts a mixed martial arts fight in her honor. Suddenly, Haley has to train West Young. All attitude, West is everything Haley promised herself she’d stay away from. Yet he won’t last five seconds in the ring without her help.

West is keeping a big secret from Haley. About who he really is. But helping her-fighting for her-is a shot at redemption. Especially since it’s his fault his family is falling apart. He can’t change the past, but maybe he can change Haley’s future.

Hayley and West have agreed to keep their relationship strictly in the ring. But as an unexpected bond forms between them and attraction mocks their best intentions, they’ll face their darkest fears and discover love is worth fighting for.

add to goodreadsTake Me On (Pushing the Limits #4)
by Katie McGarry
Publication Date:  May 27, 2014
Publisher:  Harlequin TEEN

Available for Purchase:
Chapter-Indigo |amazon|B&N|kobo|TBD|indiebound

** I couldn’t find a trailer, so here’s a song!**

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** This title was provided to us by the Publisher for an honest review.
We were in no way paid for our opinions **

Gabby-2013I’ve wanted to read Katie McGarry’s Take Me On ever since I first saw the cover and found out it was a story with mixed martial arts involved.  As a teen girl who participates in combative sports I have been waiting for so, so long to get a story that involves a female protagonist who participates as well and is described doing so accurately. Take Me On is just that. It brings me so much joy knowing that this book exists and that McGarry knew what she was talking about in her writing.

Haley Williams is an ex-champion kickboxer who walked away for reasons she doesn’t like to discuss. Living with an uncle who is the bane of her existence and her fighter brother and cousin—all eyes are on her to keep things running smoothly. It isn’t until Haley is faced with dangerous conflict that she meets West Young. West is a member of the richest family in town and is trying to keep that secret from Haley who he is slowly falling for.

When Haley’s ex-boyfriend (and pro fighter) confronts her, West acts in her defense and finds himself agreeing to a fight in the cage in two months. West’s only chance is to accept training from Haley but no amount of natural talent or restraint can stop either of them from the intense feelings between them both.

I’m very nit-picky when it comes to mixed martial arts and I thought about everything that Haley’s character said about mauy thai and striking. It was all legit. There wasn’t anything that Haley said or did that was wrong and I really loved that. A lot of the time writers won’t accurately describe things correctly when they have characters teaching other characters how to fight. Obviously, based on what I’ve already said, that isn’t the case for Take Me On at all.

My other concern going into Take Me On was the fact that I have not read any of the other Pushing the Limits books. I’ve heard that they’re good. That they’ve got romantic, heart-wrenching stories but I haven’t had the opportunity to read them. The only reason I read Take Me On was the whole combative sports aspect. I enjoyed that Take Me On didn’t feel like a continuation of the series and that I had no clue what was going on. Everything that took place in the previous novel and all of the characters were introduced brand-new to me.

Haley and West’s characters are unique and entertaining. The way that McGarry writes them does give a realistic idea of what it’s like to be in their heads. Everything’s in first person and the majority of West’s thought process had me smirking or giving a laugh here or there. The two of them are characters that are nothing alike—but opposites attract in this novel’s case. Take Me On is written in a way that leaves some mystery behind the character’s pasts and that mystery is slowly unfolded as the novel continues.

Take Me On was a good, well-written read. My only complaint would be the romance between West and Haley. Don’t get me wrong, the scenes between them were cute but it’s been admitted between both characters in their thought processes that it’s infatuation that first attracts them to each other. This didn’t sound so much to me like love as it did lust and I’m not sure how I feel about that. I wish that there could have been a slow burn type build up to their relationship instead of using a fake-relationship trope but for other readers this could be their cup of tea.

I would recommend Take Me On to readers who are fans of YA contemporary. Readers who are looking for a romantic read with a ton of action and mystery involved. Finally, to any readers who want a novel that has many twists and turns not to mention pretty steamy make out scenes.


katie mcgarry

KATIE MCGARRY was a teenager during the age of grunge and boy bands and 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.

Katie would love to hear from her readers. Contact her via her website,, follow her on Twitter @KatieMcGarry, or become a fan on Facebook and Goodreads.

Connect with the Author:  Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads


  1. Brooke

    This is my favorite book of this series. I agree you don’t have to read the others to understand this, although some characters from the other books show up and it was nice to know their back story, like I already had a connection with them. And I was not a West fan before this book (for reasons you would understand if you read Crash Into Me) but this book turned me and made me understand him (b/c, yes, he is totally misunderstood). McGarry really knows how to write heart wrenching and make you really empathize with her characters. I also loved the sports aspect. I’m huge into sports themed books lately (even if it’s just a background kind of thing). Glad you enjoyed it! Go try the other books. Dare You To is a close contender to my favorite in this series for sure.

  2. Laura Plus Books

    I can’t believe it’s taken me so long! I STILL haven’t read this yet even though I’ve absolutely loved every other book in the series. So glad it was good for you! Lovely review. :D

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