Monday, 23 July 2012

Review: Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry

  Title: Pushing the Limits
  Author: Katie McGarry
  Publisher: Harlequin
  Publication date: 24th July 2012
  Source: NetGalley
  My rating: 3.5 stars


"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.

I can never get enough of reading stories about two characters who are complete opposites falling for one another. I think that’s what drew me to Pushing the Limits in the first place. Noah the guy at school with the reputation of a stoner, having several one night stands, and is known for being trouble. Then there’s Echo, the one popular girl that had it all; part of the popular crowd, had the perfect all star boyfriend, but when everything came tumbling around her, she isolated herself from everyone despite all her friends trying to encourage her to be part of them once more.

Both Echo and Noah had so many problems to get through, Noah trying to get custody of his younger brothers and Echo being unable to remember what happened that unfortunate night with her mother. I was compelled into reading to find out how their journey would end, would they end up finally being able to resolve the issues that had been tormenting them for the last few years? And having a happy ending they deserve?

I liked how despite several differences Noah and Echo were like the perfect fit; they both had secrets and were just broken from the amount of heartache they had experienced. However they were the only ones that could understand where the other one was coming from.

Noah became a character I quickly fell for, I loved seeing his cocky, arrogant side, but also his softer loving side, which he saved just around Echo, and at times he just made me melt.

There are however always some characters you come across which will forever grate on you, these characters unfortunately in this book were Echo’s dad and step mum Ashley. Echo’s dad was always controlling and overbearing thinking he knew best. Ashley on the other hand comes across as always wanting to be centre of attention. Seriously why do they always have sucky parents in YA books these days? However there were some characters which made up for this disappointing pair and who I ended up adoring; Isaiah and Mrs Collins. Mrs Collins; Echo and Noah’s social worker was a total hoot at times, I actually forgot what she was there for because her role blurred across so many boundaries, she was the rock that both of them needed in their lives to uncover underlying problems and put them in the right direction. Isaiah, Noah’s friend was also a barrel of laughs, everyone assumed because of the way he looked, his tattoos and piercings he would be rough and have such an attitude, but he was the complete opposite, I would have loved to have got to know his character more.

There were however a few minor issues which bugged me, Noah quickly began to remind me of the Fuentes brothers more specifically Alex (who even though would always remain my absolute favourite) kind of peeved me off eventually. Also some of the decisions Echo made also made me knock off a star from my overall rating.

However despite these minor irks I did enjoy Pushing the Limits, it was a heartbreaking read, and the fact that I was eager to discover just how everything would end up for Noah and Echo, it certainly kept me captivated.

Thank you to NetGalley and Harlequin for the opportunity to read this book. 


  1. YAYYYYYYY! I'm SO glad you liked this (despite some having some issues) but still...YAYYYYYYY! Awwww...I actually quite liked Ashley - I mean, she was certainly the sort who craved attention and in the beginning, I hated her; but as I read on, I realised that she was a loving person- and I guess I started liking her character more as the story progressed :) Hahaaa Fuentes brothers :D I can never get enough of Alex! LOVE the guy to bits<3 Anywayyy fab review Jasprit!

  2. Glad to see that this was a good read! I've heard so many raving reviews on it and I can't wait to start on it :) Great review :D

    Confessions of a Readaholic

  3. Yay! I'm glad Issiah is a character that proves looks are deceiving! This book sounds fantastic, even though it wasn't perfect for you. I haven't heard of the Fuentes brothers yet, most google them to see what you were talking about.
    Awesome review Jasprit!

  4. I had pretty much the same thoughts on the book as you did. I thought Noah and Echo were perfect for each other too even with all the problems they had to face. I agree with you when you mentioned that Noah is reminiscent to Alex (who I adore too!). Still, there was something very enjoyable about this book. Oh and yes the whole sucky parents in YA annoys me sometimes!
    Glad to hear that you liked it overall, Jasprit.
    Lovely review as usual. :)

  5. Great review, Jasprit! I'm glad you enjoyed this! I completely agree about Noah and Echo. They were pretty different characters but fit together so perfectly. I think Noah made me melt quite a few times. ;) I would have loved to know Isaiah more too. Maybe we might get to see more of him in Beth's story. :)

  6. Wonderful review, Jasprit! I'm glad to see that you enjoyed this one, despite a few of the qualms you had with it!(: I absolutely agree with you though - Noah is such a swoon-worthy love interest. I felt like a puddle of mush sometimes at his sweet statements and I love how right he and Echo felt together. I'm really looking forward to the sequel with Beth and hopefully some of the depth you're craving for with Isiah will be satisfied in the next installment! :D

    Ivy Book Bindings

  7. Echo's parents were definitely hard to deal with I thought, I just wanted to reach in and throttle them both at times! Overall, I just adored this one, though I definitely saw some Perfect Chemistry similarities. Didn't bother me for some reason though, I just loved Noah and Echo too much:) Lovely review as always Jasprit, glad you enjoyed it for the most part despite the problems you listed!

  8. Echo's parents were my least favorite characters in this book too! They totally grate on me even until the end. Glad you still enjoyed it despite the minor irks. Great review, Jasprit! :)

  9. this is the second time that we review the same book on the same day. I love it. I agree with you about Echo's dad and Ashley, I never really believed that they cared for her, and I had some issues too, but our rating is pretty much the same and I still think this book deserves the attention it's getting.
    Amazing review, love!

  10. I gave it 5/5. I read this and Perfect Chemistry back to back and honestly, this had more to give out of the two. I was slightly disappointed as Perfect Chemistry has a great reputation, but I gave that a 3.5; it was a little cliched.

    I thought Pushing the Limits was fantastic though because I haven't emotionally connected to a book to this extent in quite a while. This one made me sob big tears; particularly where Noah's brothers were concerned.

    I think that Echo's father had quite an interesting story arc actually, and although he is ridiculously overprotective and closed off - there is a good reason for it which is resolved very well. I would agree that Ashley was annoying though.

  11. I am starting this soon. I have read so many glowing reviews but you and Maja both had some problems like Nosh's character. I am sure my thoughts will be in line with you two gals. I am glad though that overall it is a good read. I am anxious to start it!

  12. I am starting this soon. I have read so many glowing reviews but you and Maja both had some problems like Nosh's character. I am sure my thoughts will be in line with you two gals. I am glad though that overall it is a good read. I am anxious to start it!

  13. YAY. This book is all over the blogosphere at the moment :D I hated Ashley but towards the end, I sort of accepted her. Echo's father was so complex, at least in context of the events that had occurred and I thought that made for an interesting read! Echo and Noah = definitely THE perfect fit. Awesome review, Jasprit :D

  14. If I thought I was already desperate to read this, then I'm DYING for it now! Noah sounds so swoon-worthy, and seeing as I don't know who the Fuentes brothers are, I don't think that would annoy me, so I can enjoy him even more!

    I'm the same, I can't get enough of books with characters who are opposite to one another falling in love. I love it.<3

    It's a shame this only got a 3.5 from you, Jasprit, but I'm still aching to read it! Thanks for a wonderful review.(:

  15. I can't get enough ofcstories where two completely opposite characters fall for each other either! What can I say, I'm just a sucker for a sweet romance!

    I love the sound of this book, and it sounds like it has some great characters too (as well as the sucky ones); Mrs Collins sounds like a really nice character.

    I can imagine Noah being similar to the Fuentes brothers, what first drew me to this book was that it reminded me vaguely ofPerfect Chemistry, which I LOVED, but I hope I don't find the resemblance TOO annoying when I read Pushing The Limits.

    Fab review :)

  16. I haven't read your review Jaspirit because I'll be reading this one very soon and I didn't want to spoil anything. But, sorry you didn't seem to enjoy it as much as other reviews I've seen. Once I've read it, I'll drop back and compare notes :)

  17. I was beginning to feel like I'd read a different book to every one else so I am really pleased to see that you didn't rate this 5 either and I really enjoyed your review, J! I did enjoy parts of it but I totally understand your issue with Noah, he grated on me and did not sound like a teen and Echo did make some silly decisions. Also, her parents and her friends were annoying!

  18. Great review, this was on my 'buy soon' list but I think I might see if I can borrow it now, I'm still looking forward to reading it though!

  19. I'm currently reading this book Jasprit, and I agree with many of your points and thoughts. :) Echo and Noah (swoon-worthy is right!) are both damaged but very realistic characters, and I love the relationship between them. I despise Echo's father and step mom (her father in particular) but I guess that's the point.

    Your review is a gem, honey. :) Thank you for sharing!

  20. Ah, I'm really worried about the drama part in this book when I picked it up. Can't stand too much soap opera! :P I'm reading this book right now, and oh my gosh! I think Echo's parents are unbelievable. Ashley, grrr! But I totally adore Mrs. Collins, she's AMAZING! x) So glad that she's there for Echo and Noah! :')

    Super faaaabulous review, my dear! <3


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