Title: Breaking the Rules (Pushing the Limits, #1.5)
Author: Katie McGarry
Rating: 3 Stars
McGarry's books are the type of guilty-pleasure reads I genuinely feel ever-so-slightly guilty about reading. Not only are they chock-full of the type of predictable drama romantic comedies are full of--an ex-girlfriend appears out of the blue, a more sophisticated guy is interested in your girlfriend, etc.--but they also contain a nearly sickly-sweet romantic couple. Yet, I find that McGarry's writing is simply irresistible. She makes you FEEL for her characters and though I could see the conflicts coming from a mile away, they still made me gasp and my heart squeeze in worry. It's all Standard Romance Plot but, sometimes, that's precisely the kind of novel a girl needs to forget about her finals.
Moreover, what I did really enjoy about Breaking the Rules is the manner in which McGarry writes Noah and Echo's relationship. By the end of Pushing the Limits, it seems as if these two are riding out into the sunset and living their happily-ever-after. The fact that neither Noah nor Echo are completely healed from their pasts is a relief. The fact that they haven't had sex by the opening of this novel and take time to talk about it and discuss their insecurities and wait until they're both comfortable is yet another relief. Most of all, though, the fact that their futures aren't set in stone and are subject to change is a wonderful message. At its core, Breaking the Rules is a romance novel, sure, but it also has plenty of note-worthy New Adult qualities that I support. Now, if only Noah could get rid of that terrible habit of calling Echo his siren and we'd all be that much happier...
Title: Nowhere But Here (Thunder Road, #1)
Author: Katie McGarry
Rating: 3.5 Stars
While I've struggled with McGarry in the past and fully expected Nowhere But Here to be my last venture into her work, I managed to become sucked into the world of motorcycle gangs that she depicted. I adore a YA romance that features family and individual growth and, alongside some action, that's exactly what this is. It still contains classic McGarry tropes that I don't love but, nevertheless, they aren't enough to completely drag down this narrative. If McGarry is a hit-or-miss author for you, I'd say it's worth giving this one a shot.