Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Book Blitz, Review & Excerpt: Take Me On by Katie McGarry

Release Date: 05/27/14
Harlequin Teen

Summary from Goodreads:
Acclaimed author Katie McGarry returns with the knockout new story of two high school seniors who are about to learn what winning really means.

Champion kickboxer Haley swore she'd never set foot in the ring again after one tragic night. But then the guy she can't stop thinking about accepts a mixed martial arts fight in her honor. Suddenly, Haley has to train West Young. All attitude, West is everything Haley promised herself she'd stay away from. Yet he won't last five seconds in the ring without her help.

West is keeping a big secret from Haley. About who he really is. But helping her-fighting for her-is a shot at redemption. Especially since it's his fault his family is falling apart. He can't change the past, but maybe he can change Haley's future.

Hayley and West have agreed to keep their relationship strictly in the ring. But as an unexpected bond forms between them and attraction mocks their best intentions, they'll face their darkest fears and discover love is worth fighting for.

Bonus novella included: Crossing the Line.

My Review:

West Young is Rachel's brother from Crash Into You. While Take Me On can be read as a standalone, there are several references to what happens in Crash Into You, plus this takes place during the ending time period of CIY, so it may be helpful to read CIY first. Plus I loved CIY, so I recommend it anyway.

Our MCs, West and Haley, are not perfect characters, nor perfect people. They have made mistakes, hurt others, suffered loss, and have yet to find the tools to dig them out of the holes and traps they are in. Some of their struggles are from their own choices, some from other's choices, and some are just what we call "life." What goes down in this book, and the past situations these two have endured, are heartbreaking. But this story brings these two people who shouldn't even know each other together, and somehow they find reasons to change, grow, and renew their focus, purpose, and hope in life. I loved reading about both West and Haley. I genuinely liked them both, and rooted for them to make the right choices. Not only did I like them individually, but I loved the tender, determined, and endearing traits they brought out of each other.

Take Me On tackles numerous topics, numerous social and personal issues, and though I don't want to say what they are specifically because I don't want to give away spoilers, I will say that McGarry is able to seamlessly blend so many situations and struggles together, that anyone reading this book should be able to relate to at least one issue, if not more. All of McGarry's books have handled difficult topics, but I think Take Me One has touched on the most topics, and I really appreciate the respect and sensitivity she shows the characters and their situations through her writing. Which then makes the reader feel respected, which is always a good thing. The plot is also exciting, with just the right blend of emotion and action. I didn't want to put the book down, and wanted to fight alongside West and Haley until the end.

I realize that McGarry will write books outside of this series, but honestly, I would be perfectly content if she only wrote stories in this series. I will read them all. Every book is not only the story of its main characters, but we are exposed to incredible secondary characters, and I want to know all of their stories. Katie McGarry has such an amazing knack for bridging gaps between opposing ends of the spectrum and bringing unlikely characters together, to understand each other, to empathize and sympathize, to forgive, to care, to hope, to dream, to live. Take Me On once again hits the mark, and I loved it. I'm looking forward to whatever and whomever comes next.


Excerpt from West’s POV:
With each halfhearted throw, I step in, and in smooth, rhythmic movements, Haley continues to counter, keeping a safe distance between us. She stays close enough to block me, close enough to go on the offensive if she chooses, but far enough away I can’t touch and that’s what I want…I crave to touch Haley.
Without warning, I slide into her and back her into the cage. Haley’s breath leaves her body in a rush and those dark eyes focus on me. Her hands rest on my chest and her fingers flutter, as if not sure whether to push or to explore. With my gloves against the fence on either side of her head, I lean into her and draw my nose up her jawline to her ear. Her body is warm and firm and she smells so damn good.
“We shouldn’t do this,” she whispers, yet her hands wander to my back and trace my spine. “I won’t date another fighter.”
“Then walk away.” I trail a line of kisses along her collarbone, up her throat, then pause, staring straight into her eyes, giving her the chance to end this now. “I won’t lie. I want this, Haley. I want you.”

Available from:
 photo 9F3EE1AE-B1F5-45EB-87E4-5D28630C7FC5-7157-000003FF9121E113.jpg  photo 6682AA0B-74D4-4387-95A5-8FF5F06129C8-7157-000003FF90EF4A11.jpg  photo kobobuyicon_zpsb933c957.png  photo C5192E77-11AB-4F0C-A100-1152CA3C5DBB-7157-000003FF90C02846.jpg  photo A2DA65FC-B90B-467F-AF60-4D7E604A5611-7157-000003FF907102DD.jpg  photo bookdepositorybutton_zps03c7c0bd.jpg

Books in the series:
(covers linked to Goodreads)
 photo pushingthelimits_zps8c06f01f.jpg  photo dareyouto_zps7e2247a9.jpg  photo crashintoyou_zpsba4a938d.jpg
 photo takemeon_zps1c41c15a.jpg  photo BreakingtheRules_zps17a89236.jpg

Here are two exclusive teaser excerpts from Breaking the Rules, if you would like to share one in your post J

 From Noah’s Point of View
I love how Echo molds her body around mine: head on my shoulder, her hair teasing my neck, her arms winding around my chest. I hug her and revel in her warmth.
From Echo’s Point of View
Noah leans into my touch, and I love that I have that effect on him. I lick my lips, half hoping he kisses me—half wondering what would happen if he did.

Links for Breaking the Rules:

About the Author:
KATIE MCGARRY was a teenager during the age of grunge and boy bands and remembers those years as the best and worst of her life. She is a lover of music, happy endings, and reality television, and is a secret University of Kentucky basketball fan.

Katie would love to hear from her readers. Contact her via her website,, follow her on Twitter @KatieMcGarry, or become a fan on Facebook and Goodreads.

Author Links:
 photo iconwebsite-32x32_zps1f477f69.png  photo icongoodreads32_zps60f83491.png  photo icontwitter-32x32_zpsae13e2b2.png  photo iconfacebook-32x32_zps64a79d4a.png

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  1. I absolutely have to win this. lol I love this series, I never did read this one, I didn't even realize it came out! slipped by me somehow, and that upsets me greatly!

    1. I hope you get to read Take Me On soon. It's great! I love this series :)

  2. Favorite character? Guy-wise, between Isaiah and Noah.


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