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YAB Review: “Burn for Burn” By Siobhan Vivian and Jenny Han

Burn For Burn

Today’s post comes from Molly, a YAB member who recently read “Burn for Burn” by Siobhan Vivian and Jenny Han. The novel is about three girls who seek to get revenge against people who’ve done them wrong. For one, that means a boy who took things too far with her at a party, for another, it’s revenge against her former best friend who’s been spreading rumors about her, and for the third, it’s facing the school bully. The girls come together to plot revenge, but things get more intense than they ever expected as Molly explains…

YAB Review: “Burn for Burn” By Siobhan Vivian and Jenny Han

First Impressions

This novel told from three prospectives captures the reader’s attention from the very beginning by capturing the characters’ pain. The town where the story takes place is also well drawn from the beginning, from the description of the local stores to the explanation of how cut off from the mainland they are.

Sum It Up…

“Burn for Burn” is told from the perspective of three girls living in the small town of Jar Island. Kat is known around town as “rough,” after her mom died when she was in middle school. She’s been raised by her father and older brother, and she knows how to take care of herself. She used to be best friends with Lilia, but as high school began, their third best friend turned on her, spreading nasty rumors through the school. Lilia’s always been happy with her life; good friends, good parents, good reputation. But when a guy at a party goes farther than she wants him to go, she’s left unsure about anything. Mary moved back to the island to finally confront a middle school bully, but now that she’s back she wonders if she made a mistake.

When were you hooked?

The girls’ individual back stories are interesting, but it doesn’t get to the point where you can’t put it down until their stories intertwine. The girls come together to plot revenge against the people they believe have wronged them. At first the revenge is simple; embarrass a boy by making his private poems public, switch his sunscreen out with a lotion that will make his skin sizzle. But when they up the stakes, the results might be more permanent then they could have imagined.

Verdict?

“Burn for Burn” is the first book in the trilogy. and it leaves off on a maddening cliff hanger. The pace towards the end is frenzied, which fits the action of the book, and overall the balance of mystery and reveals is great. My one issue with the book is the suggestion of supernatural phenomena that isn’t really addressed, but there’s two more books to explore it more thoroughly. Overall, “Burn for Burn” is a must read for fall.

  Molly Horan

Molly Molly is a freelance writer who’s covered everything from Wrock concerts to classic lit, though she specializes in geeky lists and book reviews. An aspiring YA author, when not writing she can normally be found reading the latest contemporary YA novel or re-reading Harry Potter. Born and raised in Bristol, CT, she now lives in New York City and while she loves the excitement and the culture, she sometimes misses Connecticut’s trees.