Take Me On (Pushing The Limits #4) by Katie McGarry

Book Title: Take Me On (Pushing The Limits #4)
Author: Katie McGarry
Publish Date: May 27th, 2014
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Genre: YA Contemporary
Series: Book 4 in Pushing The Limits series
Book Link: Goodreads
Synopsis from Goodreads:
Acclaimed author Katie McGarry returns with the knockout new story of two high school seniors who are about to learn what winning really means.

Champion kickboxer Haley swore she’d never set foot in the ring again after one tragic night. But then the guy she can’t stop thinking about accepts a mixed martial arts fight in her honor. Suddenly, Haley has to train West Young. All attitude, West is everything Haley promised herself she’d stay away from. Yet he won’t last five seconds in the ring without her help.

West is keeping a big secret from Haley. About who he really is. But helping her-fighting for her-is a shot at redemption. Especially since it’s his fault his family is falling apart. He can’t change the past, but maybe he can change Haley’s future.

Hayley and West have agreed to keep their relationship strictly in the ring. But as an unexpected bond forms between them and attraction mocks their best intentions, they’ll face their darkest fears and discover love is worth fighting for.

Disclaimer: This is a library book.

Holy moly, I adored this book. I didn’t have a great impression of West in Crash Into You, but that all changed in Take Me On. Not only did my opinion of him vastly improve, the female main character was a total badass. She wasn’t a doormat like I felt Rachel was in Crash Into You. As a matter of fact, she was the complete opposite of Rachel.

Haley is doing everything she can to keep her family safe. Even while they are all crowded into her uncle’s house. Even when her uncle demeans her. Haley’s home life basically broke my heart into a thousand tiny pieces. I wanted to hug her pretty quickly into the book. She had dreams for herself, though those dreams had taken a serious hit. Especially once her entire family had to move in with her uncle.

And then there’s Matt. Her ex boyfriend. The one who hit her. It takes Haley a long time to admit to anyone that Matt had hit her. He also wants her back and he’ll do anything to make that happen. Because in Matt’s eyes, Haley is his. Only his.

West has other ideas though. After learning of Haley’s kickboxing past, he knows she can take care of herself. He knows she doesn’t need him to take care of her. Yet there’s something about her that attracts him. It’s not just the fact that she’s gorgeous. The fact that she doesn’t know who he is, is appealing to him. The fact that she doesn’t know his family history, which includes a loaded family, a dead sister and an almost dead sister.

They each give each other a sense of belonging. That’s important and it’s something not to be ignored.

West is also seeing things differently. Long held family secrets are coming to the forefront and he’s suddenly feeling like Haley is his soft spot to land on when things get difficult. He feels more like himself around her and less like an outsider like he feels when he’s around his family. West is startled to realize that Haley accepts him completely, and she doesn’t want him to change.

The aftermath of Rachel’s accident stays with West for the majority of the book and it’s not until halfway through the book, that he starts to realize that he needs to stop punishing himself. Not only that, but he also needs to ease up on Isaiah. He blames Isaiah for Rachel’s accident as well, but in a different capacity. It’s not until a late night chat with Rachel forces him to understand that Rachel loves Isaiah and that Isaiah loves Rachel.
After I was so disappointed with Crash Into You, I was so nervous about this one. I was afraid that I wouldn’t enjoy this one either. Boy was I wrong. I absolutely loved this one and it’s currently battling it out with Pushing The Limits for my favorite Katie McGarry book. 5 stars to this book  that held a strong female character and allowed us to see a softer side to West Young.