Book: Burn For Burn by Jenny Han & Siobhan Vivian, Simon & Schuster Audio, Sept. 2012
Book Info: YA Contemporary, Audiobook purchase. Running time: 7 hrs, 1 min. Read by: Joy Osmanski, Madeleine Maby, Rebekkah Ross. Also available in paperback, 384 pages.
Rating: 3 / 5 Stars
I’ve been meaning to check out Burn For Burn, and now that the sequel Fire With Fire is out the timing was right. Jenny Han’s summer series is a favorite so this book has been on my radar for some time. Is Burn For Burn contemporary or paranormal? I’d call it more contemporary, since there’s just a glimmer of paranormal so far. Burn For Burn is a tale of three wronged girls and their plot for revenge, and is kind of a cross between Pretty Little Liars, Fury, and maybe Carrie? With two authors, and three POV’s, you may expect the story to get confusing, but Han and Vivian are a great writing team and I found the story easy to follow for the most part. There were some technical problems with the audiobook, but I did like that there are three narrators to line up with the three book leads.
The setting is the resort town of Jar Island. Lillia, Kat, and Mary are three girls bonded by their desire to take down their frenemies. Lillia is the pretty and rich one, who wants to protect her little sister from the guy who hurt her. Kat is tired of all the gossip and the Regina George of her school tormenting her. And Mary is back on Jar Island after a long absence. The guy she trusted bullied her, and now she’s back with a new sleek figure and a need for revenge.
This book is the first book of a trilogy, and sets up the backstory well and gives you a feel for the characters. Once the trio comes together to hatch their plan the story kicks into high gear. At first, everything goes off without a hitch, but soon the girls get in over their heads. I liked the girl power alliance of the trio, though I didn’t really find any of the characters particularly likeable so I felt a little distant from the story.
I’m a fan of all three audiobook narrators (Joy Osmanski, Madeleine Maby, Rebekkah Ross) who read this book, so it was a no-brainer to pick up the audio. However, technical problems made listening difficult and the quality wasn’t consistent between narrators. At least one of the narrators sounded like they were in a tunnel, and breathing sounds were audible. Personality-wise, the narrators got into their characters and made them their own. And with three POV’s, it was a good call to have three narrators. I have the audiobook for the sequel, and I’m happy to say the sound quality is clear so no worries there.
There are definitely loose ends at the end of Burn For Burn, so I’m eager to see how the story develops in Fire With Fire, and if there’s more of a paranormal element. This book is light and entertaining, with lots of high school drama, and friendship and romantic moral dilemmas. This is something to pick up when you’re in a bit of a vengeful mood.