By: Katie McGarry
Published: November 26, 2013 by Harlequin Teen
Source: Netgalley ARC from publisher (Thanks!)
(Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository)
From acclaimed author Katie McGarry comes an explosive new tale of a good girl with a reckless streak, a street-smart guy with nothing to lose, and a romance forged in the fast laneMY REVIEW:
The girl with straight As, designer clothes and the perfect life-that's who people expect Rachel Young to be. So the private-school junior keeps secrets from her wealthy parents and overbearing brothers...and she's just added two more to the list. One involves racing strangers down dark country roads in her Mustang GT. The other? Seventeen-year-old Isaiah Walker-a guy she has no business even talking to. But when the foster kid with the tattoos and intense gray eyes comes to her rescue, she can't get him out of her mind.
Isaiah has secrets, too. About where he lives, and how he really feels about Rachel. The last thing he needs is to get tangled up with a rich girl who wants to slum it on the south side for kicks-no matter how angelic she might look.
But when their shared love of street racing puts both their lives in jeopardy, they have six weeks to come up with a way out. Six weeks to discover just how far they'll go to save each other.
When I first read Pushing the Limits I knew I needed a book about Isaiah. He was a side character that made such a strong impression that his story just HAD to be told. Isaiah and Noah are best friends, both are orphans, both have grown up in the foster care system and both have been dealt a crap hand of life. As a self preservation mechanism Isaiah comes across as a "don't mess with me" kind of guy with his appearance, multiple earrings in both ears, lots of tattoos, shaved head. He has a reputation on the streets that he is someone you don't want to get involved with. And that suits him just fine. His passion is cars, fast cars, and he sees cars as his only out of the current situation he finds himself so he pursues knowledge of them all through high school so that once he graduates he can land a job as a mechanic. Isaiah is very guarded and only a select few really know him. One of those select few, Beth from Dare You To, broke his heart so to say he is against opening his heart to anyone else is an understatement.
Rachel comes from a wealthy family, goes to a very prestigious private school but her perfect life is really just a mirage. Her family is messed up and she has issues that she hides. Her passion is also cars, fast cars. Since this isn't something typical of a 17 year old girl most other girls thinks she weird and guys don't really like her because she knows more about their own car than they do so she's intimidating. Not to mention her 4 brothers pretty much scare away any potential guys. They think it's their mission in life to protect her and keep her in a bubble. So it's no surprise that she seeks out adrenaline rushes in maybe a not so safe way and is introduced to street racing. And this is how Isaiah and Rachel meet.
I loved the Fast and Furious vibe of this story. The car racing. The danger. And I really loved the connection between Isaiah and Rachel. I think what I loved most though, is that this is a story about a kid, a teenager, who yes is mature beyond his years because of what he's been through, who has been dealt such a crappy hand in life and left up to the state to raise him. He's experienced mostly bad situations jumping from foster home to foster home and because of this he doesn't trust easily, he's bitter and hard in a lot of ways. But mostly, he feels alone and just wants someone to love him, to want him. He wants to belong. While Rachel has a family, she is held to a standard she can't possibly live up to and because of the expectations her family holds her to, she also feels alone and wants someone to love her for who she is, not who others want her to be. Those feelings are what will tear at your heart.
He said he liked me. ... It's possibly the same like I feel for him. The type of like where I go sort of crazy when I don't see him and then go crazier when I do. The type where he consumes my thoughts and then I can't sleep.
I wonder if this is the reason why I've always been drawn to a flame. I've been hoping to be burned. I've been hoping to be loved.
"I am who I am and nothing more. I'm loyal to a chosen few, I always keep my word and I'll protect you with me life."
Final Rating - 4.5 stars.
This post is part of the ARC Thursday feature on Words Fueled by Love.