Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Review: Crash Into You (Pushing the Limits #3) by Katie McGarry

Release Date: November 26, 2013
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Source: NetGalley
Author Links: Website | Twitter | Goodreads

From acclaimed author Katie McGarry comes an explosive new tale of a good girl with a reckless streak, a street-smart guy with nothing to lose, and a romance forged in the fast lane

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.

I'd seen some really high praise for these books, so I jumped at the chance to read McGarry's newest book in the Pushing the Limits series. And I liked it, but it didn't blow me out of the water.
I'm thinking that either these particular characters just weren't my cuppa, or maybe I need to take a break from the angsty stuff.
I should also note that I'm a bit sick of the Good girl/Bad boy thing at the moment.

So Rachel has a weird life. Sure, her family has money, but they're beyond strange. ALL of them.
Let's start with her oddly overprotective brothers, ok? I've never seen a group (I believe there's 4 of them) of older brothers act like they have nothing better to do than escort their little sister around so that no guy ever speaks to her.
A lot of brothers tend to get pissed when guys mess with their sisters. Especially if the guy in question is a douchebag. That's normal. What's not normal is screaming death threats at every male that attempts to talk to her. You would think at least one of them would be on her side, right?  But, no.
Protectively eyeballing her date...SANE.
Acting like a psycho over a conversation between her an a random dude at a wedding...INSANE.
Yeah. So I had a problem buying into the over-the-top dynamics with her brothers.
Then there's her parents. Years ago they lost their oldest daughter to Leukemia. Very tragic, no? Yes, yes it is.
In an effort to make the mother happy again, they kept having children until Rachel was born, so that the mom would have a replacement daughter.
Unfortunately, kids aren't replaceable, so Rachael lives in the shadow of her perfect older sister.
Worse, she's expected to speak at charity functions on her dead sister's behalf. Or she was until she started having panic attacks when she was younger. The panic attacks took the form of severe vomiting, and eventually she was hospitalized because she was throwing up blood.
Skip to present day, and Rachel is supposedly over her fear of public speaking and panic attacks. Of course, she's not. She's only pretending to feel better about it so that everyone will stop treating her like she's breakable.
And now Dad wants her to start speaking at her mother's fundraising events that mommy won't be sad.
Again, I felt the parents were overblown caricatures of people, and not realistic enough for me to sympathize with or even hate.
To keep Rachel from seeming like she was made out of some boring jello mold, we find out that she loves cars. Reallyreallyreally loves cars.
And that's how she meets Isaiah...who also reallyreallyreally loves cars.
He protects her when she wanders out of her element and into an illegal street race. Naturally, there's an evil guy who run the race. This same evil guy blames Rachel for selling them out to the cops/stealing his money. And also (naturally), they have to find a way to pay him back...or else!
That whole plotline felt like something out of a 50's movie, and I kept expecting them to break out into some sort of a dance-off to settle the score. Or some such nonsense.
As the fear for their lives increased, the obvious answer just sat there staring them in the face.
Call the cops (who are actively looking for a reason to arrest the guy) and report him for threatening to kill you!
But wait. They can't do that. Rachel doesn't want her parents to find out she was involved in illegal street race!
Well. That's an awesome reason to get killed by a scummy wannabe mobster. Sorry I questioned your logic, Einstein.

Ok. Sorry, I'm making it sound like this book is total crap, but in reality it's not. I didn't have a hard time getting through the story, and there are tons of absolutely glowing reviews out there for this one. New Adult is a genre that thrives on drama and angst, so I'm not going to fault an author for giving readers exactly what they came to the party looking for. So.
My personal opinion is that this one was overly...everything. But even I know that my opinion doesn't count for much. It will probably be a great read to someone who isn't burned out on virgin heroines and damaged heroes.


The Literary Darling said...

I haven't read much New Adult books for the very reasons that you have just stated...I cannot stand the overly dramatic angst and this book seems like it shoves it down your throat. I loved your review and I thought it honest but without being too harsh. :)

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