Burn for Burn by Jenny Han and Siobhan Vivian
Expected Publication Date: September 18th, 2012
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
Page Count: 368 pages
*I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review*
BIG GIRLS DON'T CRY...I admit, I'm a huge fan of books like Gossip Girl and Pretty Little Liars, where girls are uber bitches and guys are total skeezes. And, while I liked Burn for Burn, it didn't measure up to the upper-east-side-like drama that I tend to love. Don't get me wrong, I completely devoured this book in like... 2 days and there were some moments that had me feeling some feelings, but I didn't think it had the umph I would have liked. The characters were definitely shallow like I like them, and tortured or depressed or whatever other problems they had, which always makes an interesting protagonist and the story was fast paced and didn't really drag much, but I think there could have been more added. Burn for Burn is a great story about an unlikely alliance between three teenage girls from different cliques, but the revenge dished out wasn't cold enough.
THEY GET EVEN.
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.
Out of the three girls I definitely liked Kat the most. She was the most interesting as well as the most down to earth of the three. Her want to get revenge is pretty warranted, but I think the execution could have been a lot better. It seemed like most of the story focused on Lillia's revenge, which honestly didn't make much sense to me. I really had no idea why Lillia directed her anger towards the person that she did when it would have been much more appropriate to have it directed towards the person that actually screwed her up. Mary has the best reason to want to get back at the boy who messed her up, and I actually ended up crying a lot when I found out what happened to her during her childhood. It was also great seeing the relationship between Kat, Lillia, and Mary develop throughout the story considering where they all start out and how different they all are.
The premise for Burn for Burn is something I always love to read about: revenge. I'm a sucker for girls getting back at each other for horrible teenage things. Burn for Burn is written from alternating points of view between Lillia, Kat, and Mary and each chapter jumps between the present and the past (where we learn what screwed the girls up). This writing style definitely kept me interested in the story because whenever I started getting bored of one girl the chapter would end and I'd get to learn more about the next one. I do think that the causes for revenge could have been more extreme for Lillia and Kat, and I would have liked to have seen the girls throw out some more Mean Girls-esque ideas for revenge, but I also have to admit that I don't think I'd be too creative when it came to that kind of thing.
Overall, I really enjoyed reading Burn for Burn but in a world dominated by Mean Girls I don't think it measured up. The characters were great, albeit a little soft, and most of their victims deserved everything they got. By the way the book ended I'm guessing there will be another book, and I would love to see Vivian and Han amp up the drama lama! Because, let's be honest, as much as I hate the drama in real life, I love to read about it!!! If you're a fan of books that involve gossip, sweet revenge, sex, and backstabbing then Burn for Burn is definitely one you do not want to miss out on!!