Tuesday, September 04, 2012

Review: Burn for Burn

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Burn for Burn
Jenny Han & Siobhan Vivian
Publication date: September 18th 2012
by Simon & Schuster Books For Young Readers



Lillia has never had any problems dealing with boys who like her. Not until this summer, when one went too far. No way will she let the same thing happen to her little sister.

Kat is tired of the rumours, the insults, the cruel jokes. It all goes back to one person– her ex-best friend– and she’s ready to make her pay.

Four years ago, Mary left Jar Island because of a boy. But she’s not the same girl anymore. And she’s ready to prove it to him.

Three very different girls who want the same thing: sweet, sweet revenge. And they won’t stop until they each had a taste.

*A copy was provided by Simon & Schuster Canada for review purposes*

Sorry Karma, we’re taking things into our own hands! Kat, Mary, and Lillia are out for revenge. These three incredibly different girls – both in personality and social status – help each other right some wrongs. A great balance of friendship, drama, and intrigue; Burn for Burn is full of entertainment value, and high in sass!

The girls: We’ve got three convincing voices made up of three distinctive personalities. In a style that will appeal to fans of The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, we switch from one POV to the other, making us understand these girls individually, in a personal manner, in addition to what led to them wanting to seek revenge. Even though they aren’t all sweet and delightful, or even likeable in one case, I found them all remarkably enticing. They have such strong characters that breathe life into the story, each giving it different dashes of charm – and attitude. They’re also paired with a fantastic cast of side characters who constantly keep you on the fence, not knowing if you should like them, or hate them.

Revenge is sweet? These girls are definitely finding out. At first I thought the revenge acts were a tad lame. I actually felt sympathy for the first victim as I didn’t find he was all that deserving, and the acts themselves were a bit too personal for my taste. However, as we move on to the other two sorry souls, the acts get much more consequential, on top of being a great deal more justifiable. Not that I condone what they’re doing, but I can at least see why they thought it was warranted. They soon learn, however, that with every act of vengeance, you have to deal with the consequences.

What I wasn’t expecting from this novel was the hint of something paranormal. I was thrown off at first, wondering where it may lead up to, though by the end I was highly intrigued. We only get glimpses; it’s not a monumental part of the story for the most part, keeping the novel almost completely contemporary, but eventually, this small paranormal aspect evolves until it completely changes one whole aspect of the plot. And to be honest I kind of loved it! I’m very excited to find out more about this mysterious side that unexpectedly reminded me of one of my favorite horror movies. Expect to be highly anticipating its sequel after this crazy cliffhanger ending!

Burn for Burn is like a guilty pleasure; you should know better, but you’re secretly enthused by the anticipation of seeing these people get what’s coming for them. Han and Vivian’s writing styles blends flawlessly together, leaving us with an enchanting story full of energy and spice.

4 Hot Espressos
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Canadian blogger, wife, mother, coffee lover, and sarcastic at heart! She has had a love for all things bookish since before Amazon and eReaders existed *le gasp*. You can also find her organizing tours and other fun things at Xpresso Book Tours.
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37 Responses to “Review: Burn for Burn”

  1. Amy

    I had added this to my TBR list a little while back and only read like one or two reviews for it so I pretty much lost interest. After reading your review I am intrigued again and will probably get to it sometime. Fab review chicky!!

  2. Rebecca

    Kat, Mary, and Lillia all sound like interesting characters, I’m definitely looking forward to meeting them all. I love Jenny Han so anything by her is an auto-buy. I haven’t read anything Siobhan but if she’s gotten together with Jenny, she must be a fantastic writer. Now, for my copy to arrive! The more Burn for Burn reviews I read, make me more and excited. This is AT LEAST the third review I’ve read in the last few days, I’m excited! 😉 Love this review!

  3. Ali

    I got this book for review too, I’m actually planning on reading it today! I’m so excited to see what you mean by Paranormal aspect now. I thought it was all contemporary.

    Great review!!!

  4. Karen

    This is pretty much exactly how I felt about it. I was surprised by the supernatural and I was taking secret glee in seeing the mean kids get what was coming to them.

  5. Renae

    I’ve heard varying opinions on this book, and I like what you said about it being a guilty pleasure–sometimes those books can be your all time favorites (even against your better judgment). Anyway, thanks for this review. I’m kind of curious to learn more about the paranormal element, since it seems so unusual.

  6. Jenni @ Alluring Reads

    This one sounds good. I like a good high school drama, it sounds a little Mean Girls-y. Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants! I loved those books. I’ll be checking this one out for sure. Happy you enjoyed it!

  7. Candace

    I really enjoyed this too. The girls voices were great! I am a little unsure of the paranormal aspect though. I’m not sure if its cause I wasn’t expecting it or if it just doesn’t fit. But it certainly added a twist to it all!

  8. Anna @ Literary Exploration

    DUDE. WE FINALLY AGREE!!! I totally agree with you about the revenge being too tame in the beginning. I didn’t even understand why Lillia was so pissed, and I was like, “Calm down bitch” but the other girls’ revenge was definitely pretty warranted. I’m looking forward to seeing what’s coming! Hopefully it’ll be more brutal MUAHAHAH!!!

    Anna @ Literary Exploration

  9. Leanna (Daisy Chain Book Reviews)

    I’m a big fan of Han’s summer series, so I was really looking forward to this one. At times though, it was a little ‘meh’ for me. I thought some of the revenge tactics were kind of lame. Still, I enjoyed it enough to continue with the series and find out more about that paranormal element!

  10. Eileen

    Ahh some of my friends who’ve read this says it’s a ontemporary bordering on supernatural so it sounds intriguing and I’m glad you loved that part! Also, I’m sorry the acts of revenge left something to be desired but I’m glad you still enjoyed this as a whole! 🙂

  11. Beth Wade

    The supernatural element has me intrigued….I’m not a fan of revenge stories, as it feels like excusing bullying if it’s ‘for a good cause’, but maybe this one is more well-rounded than that?

  12. Zoe Crook

    I love the sound of this, it sounds so unique. Paranormal is very unexpected, especially after the synopsis, but that makes it even better! I’m glad you enjoyed it, thanks for the great review 🙂 xx

  13. -Ria xo

    Since reading an amazing review for this a few months ago, I’ve been dying to get my hads on it! My request on NetGalley hasn’t been answered, though. Sigh.

    You enjoying this has made me 495873457394817 times more excited to read it! Paranormal? Squee! I can’t wait to read Burn for Burn. Lovely review, Giselle.(:

  14. ShreShre

    Sounds like a really good book Giselle! 😀 The cover and title also are reeling me in 😉 Anything with even the tiniest bit of paranormal, and 4 hot espressos from you is a definite for me 😉 Awesome review!


  15. Alexa

    I am just nodding my head as I read your review because I completely agree. While I know that what they’re doing is wrong, I can’t help feeling slightly vindicated when I see mean characters get what’s coming to them!

  16. Aneeqah

    Ooh, a guilty pleasure! I’m loving the sound of that. 😉 I actually won a copy of this one, and it should be at my house by tomorrow (not that I’m stalking the book, why would I do that?! ;)). Anyways, the paranormal touch sounds really intriguing. I thought this book was solely contemporary, but it’s really interesting to learn that it has paranormal aspect. It makes me even more excited to read this one! =)

    Fabulous review Giselle! This one definitely sounds like lots of fun.

  17. The Vintage Bookworm

    Fantastic review! I’ve had this on my TBR list for a while, ever since hearing about it. I love Jenny Han’s Summer series. This one looks amazing as well! And I love the cover, it definitely does look like a good guilty pleasure. 🙂

    I’m really glad you liked it. I know I will too.