Friday, September 7, 2012
Series: Untitled Trilogy #1
Series: Untitled Trilogy #1
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Source: Signed ARC from BEA (Thanks Jenny & Siobhan & Simon & Schuster!)
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.
Burn for Burn. Doesn’t that sound like something a girl would declare arrogantly and triumphantly after being able to successfully exact her revenge on someone who’s made her life a living hell? That’s how I like to think of it, anyway, and it’s actually sort of what this book by Jenny Han & Siobhan Vivian is about.
Anyone who has ever been bullied or who has ever felt oppressed in a relationship of any kind will understand that thirst to get back at or equally hurt the person who’s pushing your buttons. I know that I’ve experienced moments where I fantasized about concocting a grand scheme to get back at the girls who used to tease me. I think it’s natural – it’s a comfort, for the most part, and it makes one feel better.
Kat, Mary and Lillia, our three main characters, take this one step further – they actually band together to perform these acts of revenge they’ve come up with.
Before anything else, I’m going to take the time to state that I don’t condone bullying of any kind whatsoever. It doesn’t even matter whether or not a person deserves “what’s coming to them”; hurting other people or scheming against them is NEVER a good thing.
Anyway, Kat, Mary and Lillia start out with revenge that’s more like pranks on their first victim. I initially believed that their actions were going to remain like this for the book – little pranks that would mess with their targets, until they could escalate into a full-blown confrontation – and thought I would be entertained a la Mean Girls. But the thing is, the revenge escalates, especially as we discover the story behind each girl’s thirst for retribution. It finally peaks in the biggest act of revenge yet –and from there, everything just spirals out of control.
Honestly, I liked the three girls well enough, so the switching POVs weren’t a hassle to me. The authors did a brilliant job with making each girl sound unique, and giving them different life circumstances. It was very easy to distinguish their voices. The one I could relate to the best was Lillia, if only because I’m somewhat similar to her in personality (at least before the revenge monster took over).
I actually enjoyed when the three of them would convene and plot out what to do next. They had an exclusive little circle, and I liked watching them discuss things, open up to each other and scheme about what to do next. Whatever what happens in the end, I firmly believe that the three of them are tied together – whether as friends or enemies, that remains to be seen.
The book is actually darker than I expected it to be. The things these three girls had to go through were incredibly different from one another, but equally sad and hurtful. I could understand why they reacted the way they did towards their victims and why the revenge became so important to them. But I also, at times, thought they were crazy and that they were just taking all these things a tad too far.
Also, there’s absolutely zero romance in this book. Okay, fine, maybe there was a wee little bit of romance tossed in, but nothing too serious. While I personally find it refreshing, I know that other people enjoy having that aspect, so I’m here to warn you that there’s nothing of that sort here. I do like one of the guy characters though, so hopefully, something romantic happens in the next book.
One thing I didn’t get was the whole sort of paranormal/superstitious thing that started making appearances towards the middle of the book. While I’m mildly curious to find out the logic behind it, I’m not so sure it was really necessary to include in the book. It made for some interesting moments though!
I did have fun reading Burn for Burn, though it’s actually a lot more serious than I expected it to be. I’m really curious to find out where it’s going to go in the next book, as well as seeing how things are going to be resolved. There are a lot of unanswered questions left, and I’m eager to get all the answers. Jenny Han & Siobhan Vivian have managed to create a book that’s escapist, thought-provoking and well, a little dark. Burn for Burn certainly managed to ensnare me with its addictive plot – and I’m certain most readers will feel the same.