Review: Crash Into You by Katie McGarry


Rating: 4 stars
Pub Date: November 26, 2013
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Genre: young adult contemporary romance
Format/Source: DRC, Netgalley
Status: book 3 of the Pushing the Limits companion series

Summary:
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.

Disclaimer: I was given a copy of this novel by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Review:
Crash Into You is the third book in the Pushing the Limits companion series, and this time, it's Isaiah's story. I read all three books back-to-back so it was wonderful staying in the story and just jumping from one couple to the next. It helped me to see the characters from so many perspectives. In Pushing the Limits Isaiah is Noah's bro, Echo's surprising source of comfort, and Beth's secret admirer. In Dare You To, it's obvious he yearns to be Echo's savior, but he can't give her everything she needs and she can't give him that either, which is really heartbreaking. Now, being in Isaiah's head in Crash Into You, we see just how much Beth's choice affected Isaiah and how he moves on from there.

Isaiah is not really the bad boy you want to think he is. Katie is really good at having the not-that-bad-boy-or-girl because Noah and Beth are totally the same. It's more like they are teens who had a crap-ton of bad circumstances in their lives that have knocked them down over and over again. In Isaiah's case, he doesn't know who his dad is, and he has serious Mommy Issues, although it's not immediately clear why that is. I think it would be so easy for Isaiah to allow himself to fall into the bad habits that surround him, but I really respect that Isaiah has a plan for his future, and he's really hard working for it. And the thing is, it's totally doable. I love that Katie doesn't push the typical college tract for Isaiah, whose talents lie in other places. Instead of having some crazy pipe dreams, Isaiah works for a realistic future doing what he loves. I also love how obvious it is that people respect Isaiah, something particularly noticeable during his interactions with Abby, Zach, and even Eric.

I found Rachel fascinating. There's so much going on with her. She's the youngest of five no six no five children. She has four older brothers (well, one is a twin), and she's haunted by the ghost of her older sister–who died before Rachel and two of her brothers were even born. There are a lot of demons lurking in the Young's seemingly perfect family. Rachel is super insecure due to crippling panic that attacks when she is forced to speak in public, but she has to hide it from her family, who treat her with kid gloves. She's got this persona of being shy and weird at school, and, oh yeah, she feels like she's being forced to replace her sister, despite being her own person. It's cool to have a girl who's into a typical guy hobby. I think that adds so much depth to Rachel's character. Here's this amazing talent that proves she can be better than the boys, but she's forced to downplay it around her family, even though it's the one thing that could really heal her. CATCH 22!

The minor characters in Crash Into You are just as amazing as those in the previous books. Katie does a wonderful job of balancing favorite familiar faces and some new ones as well. First, Logan. I read Dare You To, and all I could think of was "PLEASE write Logan's story!" (for the record, Katie's thinking about it! Also, I totally nominated Logan for the "Secondary Character Most in Need of His Own Book in EpicReads' Book Shimmy Awards. Noms are open until Dec 1. GO VOTE) I adore Logan. Every time I see him, I want to know more about him. Noah and Echo make their reappearance as well. Like with Isaiah's very reasonable future goals, I love that Katie shows off life after The End. Their book may be over, but their lives aren't. They have Real Life to take care of. This shouldn't really be a surprise to readers who started with Pushing the Limits as Noah has already made some super adult decisions, but it's nice to see that Katie didn't just hand them the perfect life.

The first of the newbies is Abby, the street rat/drug dealer who is just about the only person who doesn't ask anything from Isaiah, ever. More than anyone else, she understands the precarious nature of Isaiah's position. In Pushing the Limits it seemed that Isaiah, Beth, and Noah were an inseparable trio (and even Katie thought Beth & Isaiah would end up together), with Isaiah and Beth especially connected with their similar pasts. But I love that Katie has pushed this story and really dug deep to find surprises and new information. Abby actually is kind of bad. I mean, she really does bad things. But once again, Katie found the good in her, or rather, she used Rachel to draw that out. VERY surprising bramance, and I loved it. West and Ethan are the most present of Rachel's brothers, and I have no doubt they'll be big in Take Me On (well, it's kinda West's book so....). There's not a lot to say about the Young boys, but I really enjoy their presence.

There's a lot of high-speed action (see what I did there?!) in Crash Into You and a much more dramatic plot than before. I would never dismiss the hardships Noah, Echo, Beth, and Ryan faced in the first two books, but I do feel like Isaiah and Rachel have much more at stake for them. In the first two books, I had faith that things would work out because the characters just seemed to have the abilities and circumstances that made for Happily Ever After. Crash Into You, however, had me on the edge of my seat (well, my bed). I really didn't know things would work out, and that terrified me (because, guys. Guys. Stuff happens, and it's crazypants). I was so emotionally invested in Isaiah and Rachel's story that it felt like everything was happening to me, and I love that in a book. I love being so drawn into a story that I forget who I am a little bit. Katie is a master of that.

If you're not into contemporaries, I can't guarantee that you'll love Crash Into You or the rest of the Pushing the Limits series, but I can tell you that they are darn well written and they're engrossing. Katie has created a world full of a full spectrum of amazing characters. I ran the full gamut of emotions while reading the series, and at the end, all I wanted was more. Thankfully, I won't have long to wait, and neither do you. West's story Take Me On is set for a May 2014 release.

Book Links:
 photo B6096376-6C81-4465-8935-CE890C777EB9-1855-000001A1E900B890_zps5affbed6.jpg  photo 111AD205-AA04-4F9E-A0F4-C1264C4E9F30-1855-000001A1E8CEB6D7_zps9b730b94.jpg  photo KoboIcon_zps515cdc1a.jpg  photo B1426D4C-9EEC-4C0B-A1FB-90524B03C0CA-1855-000001A1E82B3B3E_zps17d98f4d.jpg

About the Author:
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.

Author Links:
   

Giveaway:
A few months ago, I had the pleasure of meeting Katie, and I was able to get copies of Pushing the Limits and Dare You To signed for one lucky winner. Open to US & Canada. Ends 12 AM Nov 26. All giveaway policies as stating in the Review & Site Policies tab will be enforced. I reserve the right to disqualify any entries not in accordance with those policies. Best of luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

50 comments:

  1. So far I've read Pushing the Limits and Crossing the Line. I really liked Lincoln!

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    1. I liked Lincoln too! I wish Crossing the Line had been longer.

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  2. I love this series and Katie McGarry and it would be completely impossible to pick a favorite character out of all of them. But if I were forced to I think it might end up being either Isaiah or Beth. Thanks for the giveaway!

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    1. Beth had a hard life, but I have a difficult time identifying with her. Love Isaiah, though! You are welcome, Lori. Good luck!

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  3. Katie McGarry is AMAZING! So talented. <3 Isaiah.
    Thanks so much for this amazing giveaway :-)

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    1. I agree. Once I started reading PTL, I couldn't stop until I'd finished CIY. I'm sitting on pins and needles for West's book, and I hope she continues the series after that. I REALLY want Logan to have his own book!

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  4. This is such a great review for this book! You make me want to pick up Dare You To so that I can read this now. It's so great how all the characters are somehow connected.

    As for good guy vs bad guy, I can understand the appeal of the bad boy, but I think the good guy wins in the end :)

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    1. Thank you so much, Nicole! That is a lovely thing to hear. And I love the surge of companion novels & series right now. Sometimes I don't need two characters' story to continue with a sequel, but I do like seeing them after the Happily Ever After. Companion series are good middle ground.

      I'm so with you. Bad boys are sexy and interesting, but good guys are my preference!

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  5. I haven't read her books yet but I am dying to. and to chose between good or bad boy is hard. it all depends on the guy.

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    1. I hope you can get to them soon. This is a lovely series, and there's no sign of stopping!

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  6. I haven't read any of her book yet, but definitely want- I've only heard amazing things! I usually go for the bad boy (although in the end I ended up with the good guy- the bad boy is fun for a little while, but the good guy is the best forever :))

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    1. Totally agree. I will always prefer the good guy in the end! Definitely read these when you can. Lovely, lovely series.

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  7. I always prefer the bad boy because I can't stand goodie touch shoes which it seems like most good boys in novels are.

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    1. It definitely seems like it's easier to write a bad boy with a heart of gold than a believable good guy, but there are some great ones out there!

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  8. I've read all of the ones she has out (including a digital ARC of CIY) and I really love Isaiah, but I also love Ryan.

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    1. Oh, yes. I'm a total Ryan fangirl. He's amazing. I want a book about Logan so that I can get more Ryan in my life!

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  9. I have read PTL and DYT and so far my favorite characters are Noah and Beth!

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  10. I've read Pushing the Limits and Dare You To, and if I had to pick... I'd say my favorite characters are Echo, because I love her artistic side, and Ryan, because I love how, despite appearing to be the stereotypical "good boy," he struggled with family issues but ultimately found the strength to stand up to his father.

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    1. I am quite partial to Ryan as well! He's so well written.

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  11. So hard! Bad boy or good guy…Like the comment made by "ilovemmh", it all depends on the guy.

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  12. I've really been wanting to get and read pushing the limits. I love the bad boy with good in him.

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    1. Ah, the secret good guy with the bad boy candy coating. Best of both worlds!

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    2. Absolutely :) After all its hard to fall for the total bad boy, that's a sure way to get your heart broke.

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  13. I have not read any of Katie's books, but they are on my TBR pile; I like to think I prefer the good guy, but I really do like a bad boy.

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    1. They're awesome, Lizzy. I hope you can get to them soon!

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  14. I've read Pushing the Limits, and I LOVED it! Noah and Echo are both some of my favorite book characters. I really loved their story. :)

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    1. I hope you continue with the series, Holly. It just gets better!

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  15. I haven't read any of them yet, but thanks to you I scored Pushing the Limits for free with amazon the other day! (: I tend to like both depending on what mood I'm in.

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    1. Oh, Amazon. You make me so happy! And I know you appreciate a literary bad boy, but I also know you have a good guy IRL. ;)

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  16. Noah is definitely my favorite. I fell in love with him from the very beginning.

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  17. My heart goes out to Isaiah. He's the type of guy who will always be with you through thick and thin. I was heartbroken for Isaiah in Dare You To, but I'm glad that he gets his own story now.

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    1. Oh, I know! Beth really gave him the raw end of things, even though she and Ryan are awesome together. Just wait until you read CIY. You'll feel even more!

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  18. I haven't read the series yet but I think I prefer the bad boys. Sure who doesn't want a good boy, but bad boys are the ones good girls are tend to draw in the most right?

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    1. Especially fictional bad boys. Everybody loves a fictional bad boy. There's no risk!

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  19. I have read Katie's books and my, oh my are they AMAZING! I cannot wait for Crash Into You! Thanks for the giveaway!
    -Jayne

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    1. It's out now so I hope you enjoy it!

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  20. I've actually only read Pushing the Limits so far, but I absolutely adored that book. I literally stayed up until 3 in the morning to finish reading it. And I had school the next day, but it was so worth it. I love Noah, he's so swoony.

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    1. I adore Noah as well. He's a great character. I hope you keep reading the series!

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  21. I think I like the good guy who can be the bad boy. I'm not sure that makes sense, but let's just go with it! haha
    XO, Kristi

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  22. I absolutely adore this series! I just fall in love with each new set of characters. I am very much anticipating the next installment!

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  23. I LOVE this author and the series! :)

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  24. I have these on my to read list! I really need to get reading them soon!

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