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.
Something happened to Echo Emerson, and it changed her life. It made her a outcast, after so many years hanging out with the popular crowd, putting her in a place where she has no friends to go along with her broken family. Now, she has not only physical scars of the event, but mental and emotional ones: suffering PTSD, she can’t remember what exactly happened and how her scars got there, but she knows her mom is responsible. All she wants back is a normal life.
Noah lost his parents and all his life. Separated from his siblings, he goes from troublemaker to loving brother in a minute, and tries to rebel against everything as a way to cope with his current life on the foster care system. He suffers with the distance from his family, with the bad things that could be happening to his siblings, after all, that’s the only side of the system he knows: the bad one. All he wants back is normal life.
This two paths cross when, hoping to help Echo with money to restore her late brother’s car, Mrs. Collins pays her to tutor Noah. There begins a beautiful relationship where all the hurt they feel finally surface, giving them the power to heal, once they start to put everything out.
Pushing the Limits is definitely the right title for Katie McGarry’s book, as it puts both Noah and Echo on their limits. It makes them face all that went wrong in their lives, exposing they feelings and trying to heal. It’s not just about the romance, it’s about self-love too, and that’s the beauty of this story. Noah is such a struggling soul, and this was portrayed in an amazing way. The character building was amazing, and the growing was also very well put.
There’s room to some fine adjustment in the narrative, but it could pass as a way to put this characters, also broken, and didn’t exactly slowed the reading. The book is “sobbing” worthy, and we think it’ll be impossible to finish this one unaffected.
A digital ARC of this book was provided to us for review by the publisher through NetGalley. That did not affect our opinion about the book in any way, neither we’ve got paid to review it.
Author: Katie McGarry
Country: United States
Genre(s): New Adult, Romance
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Publication date: July 31, 2012
Our favorite quotes on this book are bellow.
My father checked his watch from the chair to my right and, on my left, the Wicked Witch of the West shifted impatiently. I was missing first period calculus, my father was missing some very important meeting, and my stepmother from Oz? I’m sure she was missing her brain.
She was another therapist in the revolving door. They all asked the same questions and promised help, but each of them left me in the same condition as they found me—broken.
“Adults want us to lie. They expect us to lie. They want to live in their perfect little worlds and pretend we do nothing more than eat cookie dough and watch reality TV.”
I sipped the beer. “But we do eat cookie dough and watch reality TV.”
Lila stumbled before narrowing her eyes at me. “Exactly. We do that to take them off guard.”
Trust. Why not ask me to do something easier, like prove the existence of God? Even God had given up on me.
She’d succeeded in making me feel like a dick… again.
We’d read about sirens in English this fall; Greek mythology bullshit about women so beautiful, their voices so enchanting, that men did anything for them. Turned out that mythology crap was real because every time I saw her, I lost my mind.
She gave me the same smile I’d seen on Saturday night. That type of smile caused men to write those pussy-ass songs that Isaiah and I made fun of. I’d sit in Mrs. Collins’s office for hours and wake my ass up early to go to calculus in order to see that smile again. This was fucked up.
“You know a lot about math,” I said. You know a lot about math? What type of statement was that? Right along of the lines of “Hey, you have hair and it’s red and curly.” Real smooth.
“It doesn’t get better,” I said. “The pain. The wounds scab over and you don’t always feel like a knife is slashing through you. But when you least expect it, the pain flashes to remind you you’ll never be the same.”
Luke used to give me butterflies. Noah spawned mutant pterodactyls.
The universe had a strange sense of humor. Last semester, Echo and I barely made eye contact. Now, we were thrown together at every turn. Not that I minded.
Beth had been both wrong and right. Echo couldn’t hurt anyone, especially when she seemed so breakable herself. But the need I felt to be the one to keep the world from shattering her only confirmed Beth’s theory. I was falling for her and I was fucked.
“Get your butt in there and dress out, girl. Warm-up in five.”
“I was just walking in.” Into a Stephen King novel. Young girl, tragically scarred, attempts to return to her normal life, only to find out her normal life doesn’t want her back.
This was Noah Hutchins. The Noah Hutchins that refused steady relationships or even dating. The Noah Hutchins that only wanted one-night stands. A stoner. My opposite. And right now, everything I wanted.
“I want normal, Noah. Can you give me normal?”
Funny, she talked about normal as she tugged at the gloves on her hands. “When are you going to figure out that doesn’t exist for people like us?”
Just like she’d said, she’d gone back to her life and, in theory, I’d gone back to mine. Problem? I didn’t like mine, not without her.
“What happened? You look like hell.”
Weak kitten? Try comatose jellyfish.
“Aren’t you tired of being miserable? Don’t you want to know what it feels like to be happy again?”
Yes, but the world didn’t work that way—not for me.
It did sound crazy, yet at the same time it sounded sane.
“What do you think?” he asked.
“It’s… ah… cozy.” I’m sure the spiders loved it. Along with those strange bugs that curled into a ball when you touched them.
The worst type of crying wasn’t the kind everyone could see—the wailing on street corners, the tearing at clothes. No, the worst kind happened when your soul wept and no matter what you did, there was no way to comfort it. A section withered and became a scar on the part of your soul that survived. For people like me and Echo, our souls contained more scar tissue than life.
This girl owned my soul and stole my heart. She’d opened herself to me, giving me love and never asked for anything in return.
I love you enough to never make you choose.
“I’m sorry. That was totally inappropriate.”
Begrudgingly I let go, chuckling. “I’m all about inappropriate.”
“Why is it when people are proud of me that my life sucks?”
“Because growing up means making tough choices, and doing the right thing doesn’t necessarily mean doing the thing that feels good.”