The story is told from alternate POVs, Beth's and Ryan's.
After Noah and Echo's beautiful story, we have Beth as the heroine of Dare You To. Now, I, with my horrible premonition, thought her hero would be Isaiah. Guess what... no!
Beth, rough around the edges, but with a loyal heart and endless love for what's left of her family, her mother, is taking the fall for her mother's destruction of property offense and spends the night in jail. She is released the following morning to the hands of a new guardian. Her uncle, Scott, the famous baseball player who abandoned her at 6 years old, and his wife - a rather cold, snotty blond. She moves in with them in a town close to her hometown.
Enters Ryan Stone, an up and coming baseball player, who idols Scott and hit on Beth on a dare (and got turned down). Scott asks Ryan to be a friend to Beth at school. Ryan, seeing another opportunity to win the dare, jumps on the opportunity. Now, while Ryan is not Noah, and the swoon level didn't reach all times high, he has his own charm and cheekiness.
However, things progress and it's not about the dare anymore.
Growing up with abuse by her mother's boyfriend, Beth is used to not letting anything get to her, not even when it's a chance of a new life, love, friendship.
"If I don't feel, I don't hurt."
There is a lot of sad in this book. Beth is forced to cut off ties with her past, and while Isaiah supports her new chance in a better life, he confesses his love for Beth. The ensuing fight, after she learns he let her down with her mother and her secrets, we readers get another blow to the gut with Beth's new thought:
"It would hurt, but then the pain would be over when I died. All the pain. The indescribable ache in my chest, the heaviness in my head, the hard lump in my throat - it would all be gone."
Throughout it all, Ryan's feelings for Beth are growing and he now needs to convince her his feelings are true. That she can trust him.
"'Say it again,' she whispers, and there's heartfelt sincerity in her voice that tells me everything I want to hear. My heart explodes and surging, powerful warmth rushes through my bloodstream. She loves me. I know she does."
And while there's a lot of sad, there's also some humor. Beth's mind is quite sarcastic, not that I can blame her.
"The bed is beyond massive. Scott and Allison don't have to go to separate rooms if they fight; they can roll over a couple times and be in different zip codes."
Katie McGarry's words are pointed right to the heart. But her talent lies with the ability to give you hope while still twisting the knife.
I enjoyed Beth and Ryan a lot. I'm ready for Isaiah to get his (late teen) happily ever after, too.
Thank you to Harlequin Teen and NetGalley for the advanced copy of this book.