Crash Into You by Katie McGarry ( web | tweet )
Publication Date: 11/26/2013
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Target audience: Young adult
Keywords: parents, cars, foster children
Format read: ARC borrowed from Cassie. (Thanks!)
RBR reviews of Katie McGarry books: Pushing the Limits | Dare You To
Summary: With Noah doing his own thing and Beth pretty much out of the picture, Isaiah needs to get his stuff together. With a job opportunity on the horizon, he decides to jump into car racing so he doesn’t have to go back to living with his foster parents. That decision brings good along with the bad. Good? Rachel. Pretty Rachel who knows how to speak car. Bad? A debt they both have to pay back and only six weeks to do it. A strange partnership for sure, peppered with attraction, a certain level of defiance on Rachel’s end, and a lot of unknowns.
I love that Katie McGarry is an author who makes almost 500 pages go by in a snap.
Because I can never just stop reading. Forget the bookmarks; her character development and the chemistry, time and time again, suck me in and keep me invested until the very end. Her latest, Crash Into You, is no different and the most unbelievable thing? I never feel too connected to the supporting characters that she shifts to the limelight in each of her volumes. But she changed my mind with Beth in Dare You To, and I swear I will never doubt her again because I really enjoyed getting to know the ins and outs of Isaiah.
With Noah preoccupied with Echo and Beth’s non-reciprocated feelings, he’s sort of on his own all of a sudden except his life is actually brimming with possibilities. He just doesn’t know what to do with them. For the first time ever Isaiah has the chance to learn about his past from the biological mom who is making an effort to be a part of his life; on the flip side, he can also secure a future! With a test and an internship. But with all this new territory becomes securing where he lives so he doesn’t have to move back in with his foster parents, and this is were drag racing comes in. Security!
Yet another reason why I love McGarry. Her characters have so much dimension, especially when you are willing to look past how they look or how much money they may or may not have. This is a lesson that the characters within the story have to learn too. Isaiah isn’t a hoodlum just because he has tattoos and works with cars, and in turn, our sparkly new character, Rachel, doesn’t have a perfect life despite her supportive family, gorgeous house, and private education.
Instead she is totally anxiety ridden, smothered by her brothers, and the poster child for the dead sister she never got to meet. I don’t think I’ve ever encountered a character who suffered panic attacks quite like Rachel did in Crash. They were full on terrifying, but when they are caused by your family… how do you find the strength to stand up for yourself?
Isaiah and Rachel are each at their own strange crossroads when they meet, and become an unlikely team when a night of car racing results in a huge debt that the two must pay off in six weeks.
Here’s the thing: I don’t know an inkling about cars but I loved this was a passion that Rachel and Isaiah shared. I loved that it brought them together, and put them in a position to help out and improve the messy areas of each other’s lives. Sure, there is a push and pull here. (Mostly from Isaiah who doesn’t want to “corrupt” Rachel.) But I liked this wariness between them. Rachel was less experienced than Isaiah and neither of them felt pressured to move too fast with one another. I respected their restraint, and the baby steps it took for them to trust and support one another.
More than anything, I love that McGarry once again drives home how the strength of a family is not measured by blood. She brings so much to light when it comes to children in the foster system, as well as the indestructible bonds and loyalty that tie these “brothers” and “sisters” together.
Even though Crash Into You falls into third place as far as this series goes (Dare You To is still number 1) for me, this volume had the guaranteed combination of intrigue, self-discovery, romance, and friendship that I’ve come to expect from McGarry’s work and I can’t wait for more.