1 June 2015

Nowhere But Here - Review

Nowhere But Here - Thunder Road #1
by Katie McGarry

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What they say: An unforgettable new series from acclaimed author Katie McGarry about taking risks, opening your heart and ending up in a place you never imagined possible.

Seventeen-year-old Emily likes her life the way it is: doting parents, good friends, good school in a safe neighborhood. Sure, she's curious about her biological father—the one who chose life in a motorcycle club, the Reign of Terror, over being a parent—but that doesn't mean she wants to be a part of his world. But when a reluctant visit turns to an extended summer vacation among relatives she never knew she had, one thing becomes clear: nothing is what it seems. Not the club, not her secret-keeping father and not Oz, a guy with suck-me-in blue eyes who can help her understand them both. 

Oz wants one thing: to join the Reign of Terror. They're the good guys. They protect people. They're…family. And while Emily—the gorgeous and sheltered daughter of the club's most respected member—is in town, he's gonna prove it to her. So when her father asks him to keep her safe from a rival club with a score to settle, Oz knows it's his shot at his dream. What he doesn't count on is that Emily just might turn that dream upside down. 

No one wants them to be together. But sometimes the right person is the one you least expect, and the road you fear the most is the one that leads you home. 

Published in US by Harlequin Teen & Mira Ink/Harlequin UK

Amazon US * Amazon UK

I received a copy from the publisher (via NetGalley) in exchange for an honest review!

What I say: It's no secret I'm a big fan of biker/MC books, but  as a blogger who reviews Young Adult, New Adult & Adult books, I wasn't sure what to make of a YA biker book. Usually biker books are generally set firmly in the Adult book world, but I needn't have worried because Katie McGarry does a great job drawing the worlds of YA & biker fiction together.

First up I'm going to point out that because it's a YA book if you're expecting a sexy biker story then this isn't the book for you. Yes, there are mentions of sex and adult themes, but graphic details are not part of the plot and the story is very character driven. I've seen the book referred to as West Side Story meets Sons of Anarchy, but although the book does of course have the biker setting and themes there's no Jax naughty scenes and I'd say Nowhere But Here is kind of star-crossed teen romance set in a biker world - which really works!

I liked Oz and appreciated his dedication and enthusiasm to join the club. But what I most appreciated was however much he wants to be part of biker scene, he doesn't blindly follow orders, he maintains that he doesn't want to be a bad person or do bad things.  The friendship between the different characters made me smile and I appreciated the slow burn and how McGarry left things open to the imagination - sometimes, less really is more!

The story follows Emily as she makes some pretty big discoveries about her life and finds herself deeply immersed in the biker world (there is the distinction made between the types of biker Motorcycle Clubs and gangs). On a side note, I'd love to read a novella about her parents and the drama surrounding the local MC's.

Emily doesn't fit into the Reign of Terrors lifestyle and Oz spends most of his time trying to make her return home. I did initially think she was going to be a moping and weak character but she really wasn't. I actually felt I judged her far too quickly. 

I loved Emily and Oz together and was rooting for them to find not only a compromise but also a HEA together. I'll leave you to discover what happens and whether they can stop history from repeating itself! Bring on book 2...

4 - 4.5 Stars in my Sky!


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