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Walk the Edge Hardcover – March 29, 2016
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From School Library Journal
Gr 9 Up—Breanna is the smart, quiet, and weird girl. Her daily goal is to remain invisible. With a large family who sees her more as an annoying parent than a sibling, and classmates who view her as a freak, Breanna just wants to get out of this town and start a new life. She is propositioned by Kyle, a cool jock at her high school, to write his papers in exchange for popularity, but she just wants to be left alone. Razor, a member of the ominous Reign of Terror motorcycle club, cannot let go of the questions he has about his family's past. Why will no one tell him what they know about his mother's death? Razor must trust the club. But how can he trust them if they are keeping important information from him? When Breanna first meets Razor, she knows speaking to him is wrong. But maybe he can help her with Kyle. And maybe she can help Razor uncover what really happened to his mom. Can a good girl and a bad boy work together to solve each other's problems? In this stand-alone second installment of the "Thunder Road" series, McGarry develops a daring love story filled with blackmail, revenge, and unexpected trust. VERDICT McGarry once again creates an incredible story with two dynamic protagonists. YA romance fans will be thrilled by her latest.—Jessica Strefling, US Court of Appeals, Federal Circuit Library
"Katie McGarry is a master of her craft! Raw emotion, pure grit, I hang on every word. Her characters are real people with real problems and I cheer them every step of the way. Ready for a new addiction? Look no further than Katie McGarry's books." ~ Gena Showalter, Bestselling Author of Firstlife
"I finished WALK THE EDGE by the amazing Katie McGarry. It was SO good that now I feel bereft. I already miss Razor & Bre - I need to know more! She is by far my #1 favorite author. She paints a picture with the words, puts you IN the story... LOVE." ~ Lori Foster, New York Times Bestselling Author
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Top Customer Reviews
Wow. It's been a while since I've read a Katie McGarry book, and I love falling back into her world. Katie's stories are intense, real, visceral. They're lovely and sweet, but they also never shy away from the ugly parts of life that are occasionally glossed over in books. And yet...they're also full of love and hope and butterflies in your stomach and first kisses and puppy dogs (no, really; there's a dog in Walk the Edge).
I admit I was a little nervous going into Walk the Edge. Razor is depicted as something akin, to a psychopath in Nowhere But Here, but that's not at all who he is. Razor actually is a boy who is unpredictable, distrustful, and closed off, but also kind, loyal, and yes, he just wants to be loved. I fully admit the motorcycle club way of life is one that is strange to me so I empathize with Razor's inability to trust his father and other leaders of the club when they have been lying to him about the circumstances of his mother's death. To me, brotherhood means trust, but it also means honesty, and in both Nowhere But Here and Walk the Edge the club has flirted with disaster by not being honest with Emily and now Razor. Razor is a good guy, one who always has his people's backs (Bre, Violet, Oz, Chevy, Stone), and it's kind of disappointing to see the men Razor looks up to require him to walk outside his comfort zone before they walk outside theirs.
This is one way Razor and Bre are perfect for each other. I adore Breanna. Her voice is sweet, but she's also tough, smart, and caring. I love how she takes care of her siblings, although I hate that she has to. It breaks my heart the way Clara treats her because my sister would never be that way to me. I hate how isolated and invisible Breanna feels even in her own family. I hate how she tells her mom she needs to talk because teens are always told to talk to their parents or a trusted adult, but her mom doesn't listen and then leaves her to play house. Dear adults, if you're reading this review: if a teen ever tells you they need to talk, LISTEN. That right there is what makes teens stop talking to you and get into trouble. But my favorite line of the book, mentioned two or three times, is when Breanna mentions how "the boy everyone sees, but nobody knows is with the girl who everybidy knows but nobody sees" (ARC, pages 229 & 393). I love that they fit together, sometimes exactly alike, sometimes complete opposites.
I also really like the cyber-bullying plot, and I feel like even more than the overarching rival gang plot of the series, this arc was a major strength of the book. I didn't have Facebook in high school. No Twitter. No Snapchat. No Instagram. Nobody had a Youtube channel. No tumblr. I had Myspace for a couple months my senior year, but it was still relatively quiet. It wasn't yet widely known as a way to torment people. I never had to deal with the online pressure teens face today, but thousands of teens today do.
Breanna's and Violet's struggle with blackmail and cyber-bullying and sexism is incredibly relevant and important. Violet's loss of a scholarship, her opportunity to leave Snowflake, is an example of bulls*** real-world consequences of VICTIMS of bullying. Another character attempts suicide for fear of those consequences. Katie never pulls punches and here is the modern world all laid out: "once it's out there, it never goes away" (ARC, page 150).
Teens, be smart what you put out there. Parents and teachers and librarians, read this book. Give it to your teens. Give it to boys. Talk to your teens. Actually, talk to your kids. Teach them early. There is so much to learn, so much to discuss from a book like Walk the Edge. I didn't have to deal with this kind of stuff, but it makes me endlessly happy that there are books like this one that will help teen readers. Definitely this is a title I will be recommending to everyone.
Razor and Breanna’s story both broke my heart in different ways. Breanna is super smart and she comes from a big family. She’s right in the middle so everything seems to fall on her shoulders. I loved how she was with her younger siblings, but I absolutely HATED how her older siblings treated her. While I loved Breanna as an overall character, it broke my heart how she was afraid to be herself and how she wouldn’t stand up for herself. Enter Razor. As bad as everyone thinks he is just because he’s part of an MC, they are so completely wrong. I loved getting to know the guy under the cut, and he surprised me with how amazingly caring he was. Razor is the type that tough around the edges, but he has this huge heart underneath all the leather and it was such a great experience to see that.
I’m sure to the outside world, Razor and Breanna seem like an unlikely couple, but to see them together and to witness their relationship grow? Perfection. They really bring out the best in each other and I loved watching their relationship go from attraction to something meaningful.
Of course with this being a book about a motorcycle club, there was a ton of action, suspense, betrayal and puzzles to piece together. Add all of those things in with the slow burning romance and characters you can’t help but to love, that makes it one HELL of a book. The Thunder Road series is among my favorites and I can’t wait to see what’s next for the Reign of Terror.