When Ben Candido and his friends, Ricky and John, decide to post a YouTube video of themselves surfing on top of a car, they finally feel like the somebodies they are meant to be instead of the social nobodies that they are. Overnight, the video becomes the talk of the school, and the boys are sure that their self-appointed senior year of dares will live in infamy. Every dare brings an increased risk of bodily harm, but Ben cannot deny the thrill and sense of swagger that come with it. The stakes become even more complex when a mysterious donor bankrolls their dares in exchange for a cut in the online revenue the videos generate. But at what point do the risk and the reward come at too high of a price? What does it take to stay true to one’s self in the face of relentless pressure.
Dare Me was an intriguing read. While I could imagine with today's teens using youtube and airing their dares, making money and wanting to be somebody, at times I found it to be a bit farfetched.
I have two teenagers, and although I know caving to peer pressure to take a dare and exceeding expectation can be exhilarating, I also think today's teens are a bit more grounded. However, I do think the issues that Devine tackles are real and relative and handled very well in the story. In a world where social media rules all, Dare Me brings energy to the YA market.
Ben, Ricky and John are characters that are well-developed and very modern. Some of the dares really got my heart pumping, trying not to peek a page or two forward to make sure no one gets hurt. The only problem I had with Dare Me was that I didn't connect with the main character, Ben. I don't know if it's because he is male and I'm not or if it's the way he was portrayed. But I questioned his choices a lot. If you enjoy young adult fiction with some zing, pick up Dare Me. It has much to offer!
*I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.