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I Belong

Review: Nowhere But Here by Katie McGarry

Nowhere But HereTitle: Nowhere But Here

Author: Katie McGarry

Genre: YA Contemporary

Series: Thunder Road Series (Book #1)

Publication Date: May 26, 2015

Format: Hardcover, 496 Pages

ISBN-10: 0373211422 (Harlequin Teen)

ISBN-13: 978-0373211425 (Harlequin Teen)

Reviewed by: Bridget


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.

Quick & Dirty: Brilliantly written story that has sexy romance, amazing characters, and a meaningful message. I loved every minute of this book and would highly recommend it to everyone!

Opening Sentence: Top three awful moments of my life:

Meeting my biological father at ten

Breaking my arm in the three spots at nine

Falling into a hole and being trapped there overnight with a dead body at eight.

Excerpt: Yes

The Review:

Emily is a happy seventeen year old girl that has a wonderful life. She has amazing parents, a beautiful home, and great friends.  She would be perfectly content with her life never changing much, but soon her oh so perfect life is about to get an interruption.  Her biological father Eli hasn’t ever really been a part of her life. He didn’t want to be a father when Emily’s mom found out she was pregnant and until just a few years ago Emily had never even met him. But Eli’s mother just passed away and to show their respects Emily travels with her family to the funeral. The visit turns into an extended stay and Emily finds herself spending her summer vacation in Snowflake Kentucky. She is surrounded by family she never knew existed and an extremely attractive boy that drives her nuts. As she learns about her family and her parents past she comes to realize that maybe her perfect life wasn’t as perfect as she thought.

Oz has wanted to be a member in the Reign of Terror motorcycle club ever since he can remember. The club has been his family and joining them is the next natural step. Oz plans to become a prospect as soon as he graduates from high school, but just before he has a chance to join he is given the task of watching out for Emily, the gorgeous sheltered daughter of one of the most respected members of the club. This could be his one chance at his dream or maybe getting to know Emily will make him realize that he has others dreams. He knows that falling for Emily is a bad idea, but sometimes bad ideas turn out to be something amazing!

Emily was a really interesting character that I grew to love. I will admit at first I found her to be a tad bit frustrating because of how naïve she was, but as the story progressed it made perfect since why she written the way she was. She grows tremendously throughout the story and as things unfold you learn to understand her so much better. She is a really sweet girl that has been thrown into an impossible situation, and I couldn’t help but feel sympathetic towards her. She has a hard time trusting people and she tends to shy away from change. So when she is forced to move to a new town with all new people I can see why it would be hard to open up to anyone, especially when everything is so different from what she is comfortable with. In time I learned to appreciate her courage and witty personality. She doesn’t take crap from others and I admired that she wasn’t afraid to express her opinion. Somewhere along the way I developed a strong connection with Emily, and by the end of the story I ended up really loving her character.

Oz is one of those dangerous boys that you can’t help but be attracted to. Not only is he gorgeous to look at he is also kind, charming, confidant, loyal, tough, and committed. He has spent his entire life wanting to be a part of the Reign of Terror motorcycle club and I loved that he was such a consistent character. His character does grow throughout the story but his core ideals never waver. He is really rough around the edges, but deep down he is a really good person. He is extremely loyal and will do anything for the people he cares about. I loved that the story was told from a dual POV, being inside Oz’s head really helped me to understand his character better. His relationship with Emily is so perfect. They have undeniable chemistry and tons of sexual tension between them. They don’t really like each other at first, which lead to a great slow burning romance! Oz always treats Emily with respect and the way he flirts with her was so much fun to watch. I loved all the dynamics of their relationship and Oz has easily become a favorite book boyfriend.

Nowhere But Here is an inspirational story filled with emotion, romance, and suspense. From the moment I picked this up I instantly fell in love with everything about it. The characters are developed perfectly and so easy to connect with. The pacing was spot on and there was never a dull moment even though this was almost a 500 page book. I loved the setting of the story and the way McGarry featured motorcycle clubs was unique and interesting. I know that there are plenty of adult books that feature motorcycle clubs, but I don’t know of many YA books that do. The love story was done perfectly, it was a slow burning romance that was very believable. As always McGarry’s writing was amazing, and she really knows how to deliver a meaningful message in an entertaining way. I loved how she addressed friendship, love, loyalty, and family in the story — it made it feel so realistic. I have read most of McGarry’s other works and while I really enjoyed them this is by far my favorite book of hers. Suffice to say, I loved everything about this book and would highly recommend it to all young adult contemporary fans!

Notable Scene:

The girl’s my kind of gorgeous, no question: sexy, beautiful dark hair and eyes like a doe’s. Gotta admit, her curves turned me on and that dress she wore sealed the deal. It clung to her in all the right ways, but what was smoking was the way she wore it. Mysterious. Classy. Never seen anyone from Emily’s world walk up to the Reign of Terror as if they didn’t have a single fear.

But Emily is bad news. She’s been a thorn in this family’s side and has continually caused the people I love to bleed. Her being here will rupture already vulnerable arteries.

Thunder Road Series:

1. Nowhere But Here

2. Walk the Edge (2015)

glitter crown


FTC Advisory:  Harlequin Teen provided me with a copy of Nowhere But Here.  No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.


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Review: Nowhere But Here by Katie McGarry, 10.0 out of 10 based on 1 rating
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