Wow. Just awesome. I often steer clear of young adult contemporary romance. The angst is just too much for me. Maybe it’s a case of been there, done that, move it along. I was pleasantly surprised by Pushing the Limits. The book was well done and the characters were very well developed. This is not your typical high school romance. Instead, we have a story of two damaged kids who have a lot of issues to work through. Echo Emerson (the author does explain why she is called Echo – blame mom) is scarred both emotionally and physically by an event that she has repressed. She is also grieving the death of her beloved brother Aires. Her best friend Lila wants to bring Echo back into the “in” group, but Echo is not really interested. Echo is also under a lot of pressure at home. Her father is a control freak and her step-mother is pregnant. Despite all these issues, Echo manages to maintain a straight-A average. Noah is no stranger to tragedy. His parents died in a car accident, leaving him and his much younger brothers separated and in foster care. Noah has some anger management issues and is unable to see his younger brothers. Noah’s only goal is to get custody of his brothers and live as a family, but his bad boy behavior may get him a restraining order instead. Echo and Noah meet when they go to counseling sessions with the school counselor. Echo is assigned to tutor Noah. They hatch a plan to get into their files: Echo to find out about the event that she has repressed and Noah to get his brothers’ location. This is an amazing story and one of the best that I have read in 2012. I loved how Echo and Noah got to know each other and the very different worlds that they came from. This is an excellent book and I can’t wait to read Dare You To, coming out in June.Highly recommended.