Today I'm honoured to be the first stop on the Dare You To blog tour! Dare You To has been out for a week now, so if you haven't read it yet, you have no excuse!
For those that need reminding, this is Katie McGarry's second novel, following on from the amazing Pushing the Limits, and focuses on Beth Risk and the journey she takes with starting a new life, whilst not being able to quite let go of her past one, until she meets Ryan and he turns her life upside down...
Here's the trailer to give you a taster of what to expect:
Get your copy of Dare You To here to find out what happened: http://amzn.to/13zlsx6
As an added extra, we've managed to get a Q&A out of Katie to give a bit more insight into the story behind the book:
What inspired you to write Dare You To?
In high school, my best friend and I would spend our evenings riding around in her car with the windows rolled down and music turned up. At some point, we would always find our- selves at a late night fast food restaurant. Some of the most interesting things in my life happened between bites of greasy food. Those memories pushed me to write the opening scene of Dare You To and, from there, Beth and Ryan became full- fledged characters who demanded their story be told.
Your first book, Pushing the Limits, takes place in an urban/ suburban setting. What made you decide to set a majority of Dare You To in a rural environment?
I grew up in a fringe neighborhood south of a large city. While we had a city zip code and all the conveniences of a larger population area, we would run into farm land if we traveled a few miles south. Because of that, I grew up with a mixture of friends. I knew people who owned low rider cars with hydraulics along with guys whose tires on their four-wheel drive trucks were almost as tall as me. Beth was definitely a city girl and I liked the idea of shaking up her world by placing her somewhere different. Ryan was then born!
What type of research did you do while writing Dare You To?
Ever since I've known my husband, I've spent a good majority of my Friday nights during the summer up at the ball field watching him play. It’s amazing to see how a group of guys work, and sometimes don’t work, together on the field. I knew immediately that Ryan would play baseball and while I learned quite a bit from my husband, I wanted to understand baseball in the context of a teenager chasing a pro career and/or an athletic scholarship. I visited an indoor base- ball training facility and was able to talk to trainers there. I also spoke with teens and parents of teens in similar circumstances as Ryan. Everyone was extremely helpful and their answers and experiences helped shape the situations that Ryan faced.
I think this is one of the most vital questions that is on everyone's lips who have followed Beth from Pushing the Limits:
Why did you choose not to have Isaiah and Beth end up together?
What if I told you that when I wrote Pushing the Limits, where they appear as secondary characters, I did see them together? I’m sure no one would be shocked by that answer. When I began to examine Beth and Isaiah closely, I realized that in order for them to find peace they needed to be challenged by someone else. Beth and Isaiah are very similar and Isaiah completely enables Beth’s behavior. The two of them had a lot to work through, and as I began plotting, I realized they couldn't grow as individuals as long as they were together. I love Beth and Isaiah as if they are real live people and I truly want them to be happy. Unfortunately, I just didn't think they could find true happiness as a romantic couple. Ryan, on the other hand, is Beth’s perfect match. Beth doesn't see who she really is and because Ryan has no history with her, he’s able to see her very clearly. He falls hard for the wonderful person buried deep inside of her. Beth holds onto a past she can’t change and Ryan helps her learn how to let the past go and look toward the future. Now, one of the many wonderful chain reactions that stemmed from writing Beth with Ryan was the joy of writing Isaiah’s story, Crash Into You. My heart broke several times for Isaiah while writing Dare You To and I can’t tell you how excited I am for my readers to see who Isaiah ends up with and how this will change his life forever. I promise—you won’t be disappointed!
All I will say to this is do not let it put you off that Isaiah & Beth don't get their happy ending together - read it and let Ryan convince you he's the perfect match!
Follow the Dare You To blog tour to find out what other bloggers thought of it! The details are on the banner at the top of the page!
Find out more about Katie McGarry:
Katie 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, reality television, and is a secret University of Kentucky basketball fan. Writing has given Katie an excuse to pursue her passions. Research for her books has provided her with the amazing opportunity to train with baseball players, ride along in a drag car at ninety-six miles per hour and experience boxing and mixed martial arts.
Katie is the author of the full-length Young Adult novels PUSHING THE LIMITS and DARE YOU TO, and the e-novella CROSSING THE LINE. Her debut novel, PUSHING THE LIMITS, is a 2012 Goodreads Choice Finalist for YA Fiction. Katie’s next novel CRASH INTO YOU will published by Mira Ink in December 2013.
Katie would love to hear from her readers - contact her via Twitter @KatieMcGarry