From time to time I like to read love stories.
I like to read stories that make me smile, stories about first love and hope and innocence. I like to read stories about opposite people, from very different backgrounds, that discover that there is something that can bind their worlds.
From time to time I like to forget about work and day to day duties, and instead curl up in my bed with a cup of tea and a cute book that can make giggle and sigh and keep my fingers crossed for a happy ending..
When I started reading “Dare you to” I had 2 things on my mind:
1. How much I loved “Pushing The Limits”, the first book in the series;
2. How much I remembered not liking Beth.
You see, intentional or not, you always get to compare (at least a tiny bit) the books in a series. This is why I was happy to see that this story was even better than the first one. Also, I was happy to see how likeable Beth can really be when you get to know her better.
She has had a tough life, that’s why she kept a thick shield protecting her from everything and everyone around. Her heart has been broken too many times to count, on too many levels, so she didn’t want anyone close to her – and when someone finally got under her skin, she knew how to push that person away in a blink of an eye.
I understood her need to trick Ryan into taking her to see her mother, her need to protect the woman that was never there for her (do I really need to tell you how much I loathed that woman?). I understood why she didn’t trust Ryan that much and why it seemed impossible to believe that he might like her. I understood her anger against the whole damn world, I understood why she did confuse friendship with love for a while, I understood why she needed someone so different to save her from her own misery.
“You’re a lot like that bird in the barn. You’re so scared that you’re going to be caged in forever you can’t see the way out. You smack yourself against the wall again and again and again. The door is open, Beth. Stop running in circles and walk out.”
We are made to think that good guys are boring.
All that book-marketing advertises is bad boys in leather jackets that treat girls awfully. They throw them in our faces until we forget that there is something else that we need: someone that cares, someone to treat us right, someone to tell us beautiful things, someone to make us laugh, someone to really “get” us, to understand us like no one else, someone to make our hearts flutter with just a smile or a soft touch.
Maybe this is another reason I loved this book so much, because it proves that a ‘good’ guy can be such a cutie. I mean who needs bad boys when you have someone like Ryan, right? I hate making comparisons but this is what I expected from Chain Reaction a year ago. I wanted a bad girl with troubled past and a good boy to be turned bad. I wanted sparkles and hotness, and realistic conversations and less love at first sight and more of the couple getting to know each other, to care for each other.. I wanted to fall in love with them too. And here I did.
Also, I remember in “Pushing The Limits” how I liked Noah and how I’ve been so touched by his story and his need to take care of his siblings, but his love-interest, Echo, was a whole different story. She gave me headaches because she didn’t have much of a backbone.
But in “Dare You To” somehow I managed to like both Ryan and Beth as different as they were and as impossible as Beth can be sometimes. Yes, it’s not like she is perfect (she’s had her share of bad decisions and sometimes I didn’t approve of her reactions and I wanted to knock some sense into her) but for me Beth was a better character, so much more realistically portrayed.
And Ryan, he was a real sweetheart!
And together they were so cute and fun to be around (or in their minds). Seriously, they had me laughing all the time with their teasing and their dares and I think that they are absolutely perfect for each other.
“I told you I loved you in this rain and when you doubt my words, I want you to look at this bottle.”
I know. I loved Isaiah and it broke my heart to see Beth break his heart, but how could she not? You don’t decide who you love, the feeling just creeps into your soul and you can only follow its lead. But don’t worry, I hear that Isaiah is going to get his own girl (maybe a good girl), and I can’t wait to see his own story unfold.
Now that we’re near the bottom of the review I assume that you want to know what to expect from this book, right? Well, there will be some pretty funny scenes, some emotional moments, quite some romance, a bit of suspense here and there and a big dose of awesome!
So what I mean is that.. I dare you to pick up this book and read it!
Or not really, because if you liked the first book in the series you will probably really-really want to get your hands on this one when it becomes available.
Happy midnight reading!
Early review: ARC kindly provided by the publisher for review. I can never thank them enough!
PS: I still think that the guy in the cover looks kinda Ken-alike (and yes, that still creeps me out a bit)
Note: The Romanian version of the review can be found here.