Saturday, June 29, 2013

Dare You To by Katie McGarry

Published: May 28th, 2013
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Pages: 462
Copy: Publisher via Netgalley
Summary: Goodreads

Ryan lowers his lips to my ear. "Dance with me, Beth."

"No." I whisper the reply. I hate him and I hate myself for wanting him to touch me again....

"I dare you..."

If anyone knew the truth about Beth Risk's home life, they'd send her mother to jail and seventeen-year-old Beth who knows where. So she protects her mom at all costs. Until the day her uncle swoops in and forces Beth to choose between her mom's freedom and her own happiness. That's how Beth finds herself living with an aunt who doesn't want her and going to a school that doesn't understand her. At all. Except for the one guy who shouldn't get her, but does....

Ryan Stone is the town golden boy, a popular baseball star jock-with secrets he can't tell anyone. Not even the friends he shares everything with, including the constant dares to do crazy things. The craziest? Asking out the Skater girl who couldn't be less interested in him.

But what begins as a dare becomes an intense attraction neither Ryan nor Beth expected. Suddenly, the boy with the flawless image risks his dreams-and his life-for the girl he loves, and the girl who won't let anyone get too close is daring herself to want it all....

Dare You To is a nice little story of 'boy meets girl from wrong side of the tracks, boy loses girl, boy wins girl back again.'  Sound familiar? 

Ryan has his problems with his father, who is a very controlling person, and his Mum, who seems to be a bit of a doormat.  I was particularly upset with her seeming acceptance of the treatment of Mark, Ryan's older brother - sorry, any more than that would be a major spoiler.  Unfortunately, I didn't like Ryan's habit of saying 'I don't lose' - it made him seem like a bit of a jerk, and overly arrogant.  To me it hinted of a bit of darkness within.  Let's face it - everybody loses sometimes.

 Beth has had a tough life, but she seems unwilling to believe that she deserves anything better.  Her journey is hard and frustrating. Much as I love this kind of story, sometimes I get a little peeved at how the characters run away before getting explanations or reasons for whatever has occurred.  I understand that people are fragile and have had a hard time, but sometimes I wish they would question the bad stuff and stop accepting things at face value.

I don't mean to be overly negative here, because I did enjoy Dare You To, but I am coming to the conclusion that contemporary romances are not really my thing.  So for me this one was no more than an ok beach read. However, if you are a fan of contemporary romance, I am absolutely certain you will enjoy it.  Don't let my negativity put you off.


  1. I take my contemporary romances in very small doses. For some reason these books give me that "been there, done that" feeling a lot more than any other genre. I did enjoy this one for what it is. Great thoughts.

    1. Exactly, Annette. I think part of my problem was that I read several contemp. romances one after the other, and it became hard to remember which was which.