by Katie McGarry
Thank you to Netgalley and the publishers for a chance to read this book in exchange for an honest review!
‘You’re frightened of Snowflake because your mother raised you to be. If you stay, maybe you’ll figure out that there’s nothing to fear…’ Location 1516
Title: Nowhere But Here
Author: Katie McGarry
Published by: Harlequin (UK) Limited
Book: 1 of Thunder Road
Genre: YA/ Contemporary/ Romance
Rating: 3.5 Voodoos
Seventeen-year-old Emily has always known that her biological father is a dangerous man but since she lives far away with her mother and adoptive dad, she’s never given it much thought. But when news of a death brings Emily’s family to Kentucky for a quick visit, Emily finds herself in the middle of a feud—and drawn to a guy she should have nothing in common with.Recently out of high school, Oz is consumed with the fact that a recent screw-up might cost him everything. He has one shot at redemption: keeping Emily safe while making sure she doesn’t learn the truth about her father’s past.Even as forbidden feelings spark to life, Oz and Emily will face an adversary that threatens not only their relationship, but their lives…
This is how I imagined Oz and Emily to look.
This was cute. I like a good-girl meets bad-boy scenario coupled with family drama, secrets and lies. And in all honesty who wouldn’t?! It was an interesting story of a girl finding out where she came from and at the same time finding out who she is. Perfect right? Not quite. It wasn’t all plain sailing for me and Nowhere But Here.
Ok, I’m gonna start with what I didn’t particularly like, to get it out the way, so, I had some issues with the start of Nowhere But Here which left me a little irritated and disconnected. The main bulk of this irritation came in the form of Emily. I like a main character that I can relate to and when I read the first page and read this…
“While some of my friends are all, “Woe is me, no one understands my traumatized soul,” I’m pretty happy. I like happy. I like simple. I like predictable and I hate surprises.”
I thought BINGO a character just like me and I felt the beginning of a bond. Emily doesn’t like to upset people and does things in an attempt to please people. unfortunately this doesn’t always please people the way she hoped… YES! I do that… yay! BOND! but then she started doing things that didn’t feel like it would fit her character… like she wouldn’t sit and talk to a dying (granted un-known) grandmother because she didn’t want to… but she’d eat a pulled pork burger to make Eli feel better even though she hates pork, hmmm I think the pork thing would have been easier to palm off than upsetting dying people… no? She started to act all bratty and unwilling to be open-minded or even listen and to me it was like someone was brushing my hair the wrong way, these are things I wouldn’t have done, and so my connection to her started to disintegrate. I almost put this down because of it but Oz and Olivia kept me invested.
So the good parts, Oz was solid the whole way through the book. I found him easy to like, and yes he had a bad boy persona but he was a good guy really, it was all about family and trust to him. He did things for the brotherhood not for himself. I liked that a lot. Olivia was the same. She was the head of the family, everyone loved her and even though she was dying she was strong, she’s probably one of my favourite characters. I don’t know much about the biking community but as a concept for a series, its fun and gives a lot of scope. The Riot (the illegal/nasty gang) seemed a little flat and stereotypical though, but perhaps in the next book this will be developed on.
While I felt the first half had been fighting itself to go in the direction it had to go in, I found the second half much easier. I started to connect again with Emily because she began to listen and want to know about her extended family. The secrets drove me a little crazy but the tension was exciting more than annoying. And the romance blossomed which added a cute factor. I was surprised to find that, like Emily, I had started to love the Terrors, and was actually sad when certain people got hurt… I felt for them.
I think there is definite potential in this series and fans of Katie McGarry won’t be disappointed, but I personally didn’t love it as much as I loved Pushing the Limits. I think now that the brotherhood has been set up and the secrets have been revealed I’ll probably enjoy the rest of the series. I’m hoping there will be more rivalry between the Terrors and the Riot and definitely more romances! I’m quite excited by the Sneak Peek provided at the end, about Razor (the next books focus). He was a much darker character than Oz so it should be interesting. I’d like to see more of Chevy and Violet’s broken relationship to though.