Title: Walk the Edge
Author: Katie McGarry
Series: Thunder Road
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Published: March 29th, 2016
Rating: ★★★★☆ (4.5 out of 5)
The summary of Walk the Edge from Goodreads:
One moment of recklessness will change their worlds
Smart. Responsible. That’s seventeen-year-old Breanna’s role in her large family, and heaven forbid she put a toe out of line. Until one night of shockingly un-Breanna-like behavior puts her into a vicious cyber-bully’s line of fire—and brings fellow senior Thomas “Razor” Turner into her life.
Razor lives for the Reign of Terror motorcycle club, and good girls like Breanna just don’t belong. But when he learns she’s being blackmailed over a compromising picture of the two of them—a picture that turns one unexpected and beautiful moment into ugliness—he knows it’s time to step outside the rules.
And so they make a pact: he’ll help her track down her blackmailer, and in return she’ll help him seek answers to the mystery that’s haunted him—one that not even his club brothers have been willing to discuss. But the more time they spend together, the more their feelings grow. And suddenly they’re both walking the edge of discovering who they really are, what they want, and where they’re going from here.
It’s no secret that I love McGarry’s books. They’re the perfect mix of light moments, heart dropping scenes, and swoon-worthy pages. Walk the Edge was no different. It’s easy to connect with and root for Razor and Breanna. When they begin to work together, both are finally able to search for truths about themselves and their lives.
A lot of this book focused on perceptions. Everyone has a perception that the men in the Reign of Terror are vicious and dangerous. Most people in the high school think of Breanna as the nerdy girl who can’t fit in. Everyone thinks they know these two people, but they only know a small, little piece. The truth is that both Breanna and Razor don’t match their perceptions, and it’s their relationship that helps break down those barriers.
Breanna can remember pieces of trivia and little details easier than most people. While some might consider this a blessing, it’s made her feel different than her peers, and they treat her differently, too. She doesn’t feel like she has a place at her high school and that it doesn’t give her enough of a challenge. She needs that challenge in order to silence the part of her mind that always wants to keep thinking and analyzing.
Razor is part of the Reign of Terror and deals with the misconceptions that are connected to that group. Because people don’t understand the brotherhood and the feeling of family that goes along with it, they can’t understand Razor. Additionally, Razor carries with him uncertainties about his mother’s death, and must live with the rumors that she committed suicide to get away from him and his father.
Breanna and Razor fall into the traps of believing the misconceptions about each other, but they come to learn that just because people say things doesn’t make them true. Breanna learns that Razor, despite the tough exterior, is loyal and keeps his promises. Razor learns that Breanna isn’t the perfectly smart girl everyone believes her to be; she’s suffering under the weight of her family and their expectations.
The characters are definitely what made this book amazing for me. They’re such relatable and likely people that I couldn’t help but root for them at every turn.
I loved that the emphasis on what constitutes family is such an important part of the book. Breanna has a large family, but she doesn’t feel like she belongs. She’s not part of the “older siblings group,” but she takes care of the younger siblings so often they don’t see her has a sister but rather a semi-parent. So while she’s technically part of a family, she doesn’t feel like it. Razor has become a member of the Reign of Terror family, but doesn’t quite trust them fully yet, or understand that being part of a family means that people have your back all the time.
There really wasn’t much wrong with the book, in my opinion. I think my only problem with the book was that the climatic part of the book felt a little out of character for me. I wasn’t entirely sure how the characters got from point A to point B and I think a little development of one of the secondary characters would have gone a long way in explaining the behavior.
To be honest, I’ll read (and recommend) any of McGarry’s books to anyone who likes a contemporary teen romance that has a good mix of heart-wrenching and heart-soaring moments. I don’t think you’d have to read Nowhere But Here to understand Walk the Edge, but it certainly adds to the understanding of the world and characters.