When I first started reading this I thought this was going to be another miss for me. I loved “Pushing the Limits”, Katie McGarry’s debut novel but up until now all of the additional novels she wrote for this series were hard to get into.
But Take me on however, is another win for her.
I LOVED TAKE ME ON. The entire time I was reading it I fought the urge to check the genre this book was in to make sure it wasn’t a nonfiction book about the struggles of a group of real life adolescent boxers. This book captures High School life and what it means to have it rough as a teenager perfectly. All the characters are multi-dimensional and memorable.
They are the teens that I remember going to school with. Even if I didn’t hang with them I knew of them.
I hate to keep comparing this to her original PTL but I can’t help it, Man!! The two lovebirds in this novel are just as steamy and adorable as Echo & Noah were. In fact I think they had a lot more steam which I’m sure isn’t hard for anyone to believe considering that the two leads spend a great deal of time at gym eh-emm “working out” ;). And personally I find it’s hard for most authors to pull off sexual tension with teens without over or under-doing it.
McGarry nailed it. Haley & West were Muy Caliente.
LET ME BE CLEAR. This book is not without some melodrama. And yes I did indeed roll my eyes a few times. But the brief moments of cheesy overkill pale in comparison to the way the story as a whole captivated. It tugged at my emotions. There were parts that made me red-hot with anger. There were situations where I found myself empathizing with these fictional characters that felt soooo real.
When I was nearing the end of the novel, I decided that my review would start as follows:
Well it didn’t make me cry like Pushing the Limits did, but it did keep me up until the next morning reading it.
By the end of the book only one of these statements was true. It may have started out slow (I actually told my sister I was having trouble getting into it) but once I was in… I WAS IN!!! I definitely did stay up and read it straight through but that bit about the tears was definitely void. Chalk it up to me being a big baby if you want but both Haley and West each had important moments in their story arcs that brought on the waterworks.
BRAVO, Ms. McGarry. Kudos to you for making me second guess my decision to DNF the other sequels to PTL. I may just give them another go.
4 Ramble-Worthy Stars