Book 2/50, 2014
I purchased two tote bags full of a wide variety of novels at Toronto’s The Word on the Street festival last September, and knowing I had to read more for the demo I am writing for, Burn for Burn is one of the novels I grabbed. At first, I was discouraged by the simplicity of the writing and the size of the font. I almost put it back on my book shelf, but opted to power through. And power through is what I did: I read it in a day, so that must mean I was engaged right?
Written by two well-known female-skewed Y/A authors, Jenny Han and Siobhan Vivian, Burn for Burn is a story about three girls who live on a somewhat utopian island where life struggles consist of decisions like which beach party to attend, and which prom dress to wear. But readers quickly find out that life on Jar Island isn’t all it’s cracked up to be… and friends aren’t always your confidants.
I’ll hand one thing to Han and Vivian: they know how to write for teenage girls. While I’m not their target market, and while the demographic they are writing for is slightly younger than the demo I’m writing for, it’s evident the authors know their craft. Han and Vivian build believable characters and they are brilliant at portraying emotion and having their characters emotions resonate with their readers. As I stress again that I’m a little old for this book, it’s also worth noting that I’ll be picking up the sequel in the near future. I mean, I have to find out what happens. And ultimately, isn’t that the sign of a good book?