Burn for Burn is the first book in Jenny Han and Siobhan Vivian’s “Burn for Burn” trilogy. The series is a mix of young adult, contemporary, romanceBurn for Burn is the first book in Jenny Han and Siobhan Vivian’s “Burn for Burn” trilogy. The series is a mix of young adult, contemporary, romance, and paranormal.
It’s one of those books that you can easily speed-read through. I finished both Burn for Burn and Fire with Fire (the second book in the trilogy) over the course of two days. Ashes to Ashes, the final book in the trilogy, will be released on September 16, 2014.
Plot I understand and appreciate what the author was trying to do by shedding light on the issue of rape, like demonstrating how screwed up rape cultPlot I understand and appreciate what the author was trying to do by shedding light on the issue of rape, like demonstrating how screwed up rape culture is partly because it demonizes women and puts most (if not all) of the blame on the victims, rather than the rapist himself. BUT I thought it was all told in a very half-assed way. The main storyline is the romance between the two lead characters and they meet when the girl, Jacqueline, is almost raped by a frat boy named Buck. Lucas saves her from the rape and their romance kicks off from there.
Most of the time, Jacqueline spends time thinking about Lucas, Landon (her econ tutor whom she's been exchanging emails with), or her ex-boyfriend Kennedy. She doesn't really reflect on the near-rape incident. I'm not saying she should have been agonizing about it on every page or that there's a specific way she should have handled it because all survivors deal with it in different ways...but it seemed to be altogether forgotten by Jacqueline until she's actually faced with Buck, her attacker. And Buck only appears sporadically throughout the book. I just thought it was unrealistic, given that it was first-person POV so we should have gotten all of Jacqueline's thoughts and feelings on the matter, and a bit of disservice.
Rape was presented as more of a side issue, compared to the romance. It was used more as a plot device to bring the two leads, Jacqueline and Lucas, closer together. And I absolutely hate it whenever rape is used as a plot device. Rape is a serious issue and it's rarely presented in a well-thought-out manner.
I also didn't think it was necessary to give Lucas a ~deep dark secret~ especially when I feel like it didn't really add anything. The author didn't really delve into it. Rather, it was just used as the book's big reveal.
Characters I couldn't really get into the characters. All of the side characters were very one-dimensional. I mean, I liked Erin but she was delegated to the supportive best friend role a little too much.
Lucas didn't seem like a very realistic character but I also know a lot of readers aren't looking for realistic in their male protagonists. He was very nice, though, and I like that he didn't pressure Jacqueline into doing anything she didn't want to do and was very respectful of her. I might be the only one by ~the hero~ thing bothered me a little bit.
As for Jacqueline, she was an okay protagonist. Like I said before, this book is primarily a romance so she spends most of the book thinking about her love interest. I thought some of her actions were very believable and she was a more realistic character to me than Lucas. And she didn't need any prodding or help from Lucas to do what needed to be done near the end of the book. She grows as a character and makes those decisions on her own. So that was good.
I would say give this book a chance. A lot of people seem to love it. I had my issues but it might all come down to personal taste, rather than the book's actual quality. ...more
This is the first and only novel by Sarah Dessen that I've ever read. I know the author tends to follow the same formula in her books, over and over aThis is the first and only novel by Sarah Dessen that I've ever read. I know the author tends to follow the same formula in her books, over and over again.
Step 1. Girl has issues. Step 2. Girls meets boy. Step 3. Boys helps girl overcome said issues. Step 4. Boy and girl ride off into the sunset.
Nevertheless, I enjoyed this book. I think it really focused on the main character and her family and I was really moved by her story. I liked seeing everything through her perspective and I was happy to see her develop and mature as a person.
Maybe if I read more of Sarah Dessen's works I'd get sick of the repetition and lower my rating but as of right now I really loved this book and I'm giving it 5 stars....more
Lola and Cricket's relationship was filled with awkwardness, uncertainty, tenderness, and sincerity. It was a very believable romance and both Lola anLola and Cricket's relationship was filled with awkwardness, uncertainty, tenderness, and sincerity. It was a very believable romance and both Lola and Cricket were endearing characters -- both as a couple and as individuals. Overall, it was a really charming, fluffy book. But in comparison to "Anna & the French Kiss" I would say "Lola & the Boy Next Door" was a bit more on the serious side, (view spoiler)[mostly because of all the family drama on Lola's part with her birth mother Norah coming back into her life (hide spoiler)] -- not to say that it's super angsty or anything. ...more
This was a simple and fast read. Anna is an American sent by her father to attend boarding school in France. There she meets Etienne St. Clair: good lThis was a simple and fast read. Anna is an American sent by her father to attend boarding school in France. There she meets Etienne St. Clair: good looks, charming personality, and a British accent to boot. And he speaks fluent French. The author did a good job developing their relationship and making it believable. So, yeah, I liked it....more
I really liked the main character -- she's witty, honest, and likable. She has her flaws but that's what made me love her even more. It's a character-I really liked the main character -- she's witty, honest, and likable. She has her flaws but that's what made me love her even more. It's a character-driven novel and the romance isn't forced. Francesca and Will definitely had chemistry. The dialog is fun and the characters are interesting, lovable, realistic, and well-written. I thought Marchetta did a good job conveying each of their individual personalities and letting these characters slowly grow on you (sort of the way they grew on Francesca). I liked how their friendship developed throughout the book and the scenes where they all interacted were fun to read. I liked their dynamic of banter, teasing, etc. The love interest wasn't a total cliche, either, which I really appreciated.