Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Burning” as Want to Read:
The Burning
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Burning

3.95  ·  Rating details ·  666 ratings  ·  157 reviews
A rumour is like a fire. You might think you’ve extinguished it but one creeping, red tendril, one single wisp of smoke is enough to let it leap back into life again. Especially if someone is watching, waiting to fan the flames ...
New school.
New town.
New surname.
Social media profiles?
There’s nothing to trace Anna back to her old life. Not
ebook, 368 pages
Published February 21st 2019 by Simon Schuster Children's UK
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Burning, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Burning

The Wicked King by Holly BlackKing of Scars by Leigh BardugoThe Gilded Wolves by Roshani ChokshiWe Hunt the Flame by Hafsah FaizalDescendant of the Crane by Joan He
YA Novels of 2019
806 books — 2,421 voters
A Good Girl's Guide to Murder by Holly  JacksonThe Twisted Tree by Rachel BurgeA Girl Called Shameless by Laura StevenThe Paper & Hearts Society by Lucy PowrieProud by Juno Dawson
UKYA in 2019
61 books — 52 voters

More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
3.95  · 
Rating details
 ·  666 ratings  ·  157 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Emily May
Because fire is sneaky. You might think you've extinguished it, but one creeping red tendril, one single wisp of smoke is enough to let it leap back to life again. Especially if someone is watching, waiting to fan the flames.

So many mixed feelings right now.

The Burning is by the founder of the Everyday Sexism Project and, as expected, it has a lot of important things to say about slut-shaming, double standards, bullying, and especially how social media contributes to these. It likens the vici
Ova - Excuse My Reading
A resolution for me this year was not to finish the books I didn't enjoy. I've only read 20% so it's not fair to give a star rating, just not the right book for me.
Britta Böhler
A bit disappointed about this, despite the important issues addressed in this book. The writing could have used some serious editing (a house with big 'wooden windows', like really?) and the plot was often unconvincing.

Dec 10, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: review-copies, arc
Actual rating: 4.5 stars

" my opinion it would have made a lot more sense if he had said that fire was like a rumour. Because fire is sneaky. You might think you've extinguished it, but one creeping red tendril, one single wisp of smoke is enough to let it leap back to life again."

Told from the perspective of Anna Clark, The Burning discussed some important issues of sexism, sexual harassment and online abuse. Anna and her mum had moved all the way to Scotland from Birmingham due to a traged
Liz Barnsley
Nov 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
The Burning is one of those books that takes you on an emotional rollercoaster ride, from sadness to anger to despair to redemption and Laura Bates, through her beautifully written character voice, shows you what it means to be a teenage girl in today's social media society.

Dealing with issues of victim blaming, casual sexism and the still very skewed way of "dealing" with things, The Burning shines a light right into the darkest corners of reality.

Hugely relevant for young women today and add
Mar 03, 2019 rated it really liked it
I received a free ebook version of this from Netgalley! Thankyou to both Netgalley and the publisher for allowing me to read this. My review is still honest.

I'm very impressed by this underrated read! I was mostly attracted to this book because the author, Laura Bates, is the founder of the Everyday Sexism Project and is an all round inspirational woman. I can happily say that this book reflects those feminist values that I so love reading about and was well worth my time.
The Burning is a femini
Feb 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
On the cover of this book Holly Bourne describes it as a book teen girls NEED to read and I fully agree. This book is spectacular, it deals with the unknowingly common abuse girls face in high school, the slut shaming, the cyber bullying, the ostracising of young women by society.
There are two time lines throughout this book, the present tense Anna who is attempting to start over in a new school for reasons unknown at the beginning of the story. And the tale of Maggie from 400 years ago, a young
Disclaimer: I received this free in exchange for an honest review.

"I'm not ashamed of my body. I'm ashamed of the way my body was treated by everybody else. I'm not embarrassed because it's sexual. I'm embarrassed because it's being used in a way I didn't agree to."

I was shocked when I start reading the book. I never read anything by Laura Bates and never research anything prior of her other works. By reading the blurb behind the book, I really thought I was getting into a thriller book.

This b
Megan  (YABookers)
Disclaimer: I received this free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

‘It’s worth knowing that sometimes people see you as a symbol of something, instead of a person. And, when they do, it reflects on them, not on you’.

The Burning follows Anna, who has moved to Scotland following the death of her father and following her nude photos being leaked across social media. She is in a new school, in a new town, with a new last name and she still can’t escape the rampant bullying and slu
Trigger warnings: slut shaming, misogyny, revenge porn, bullying, witch hunts, body shaming, sexual assault, sexual harassment, mentions of abortion, fire, death of a parent (in the past).

This is a very important book and if it helps even one teenage girl to deal with whatever bullshit she's going through, it's done its job. The juxtaposition of 17th century witch hunts and contemporary pressures that social media and sexualisation places on teenage girls was fantastic, although I would have li
Chelsea Moreen
Mar 06, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-i-own
4.5 stars. Wow what a powerful book. Written by well known feminist author Laura Bates, this book combines many important feminist ideas with a story that is very relevant to our day and age. The genre crosses a boundary between Realistic fiction and Magical realism which I haven’t seen anyone really discussing, it was a nice element to the story which didn’t become overbearing. The main character has had some awful stuff done to her which is evident in her personality but she is a sweet girl wh ...more
Zoë ☆
Feb 28, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook
I quite liked this!! I picked it up on a whim and it didn’t disappoint :) Though I don’t really get why there was so much emphasis on that research project (though it was interesting!!), it felt a bit random. I definitely recommend this of you’re looking for a quick read that’s quite empowering!!
Michelle Harrison
Mar 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Powerfully written, shocking and compelling, The Burning is a book that should be read by teens and adults alike. Drawing parallels between witch hunts of the past and treatment of girls and women today, it’s raw, and sad and unfair, but ultimately empowering and important. Young women who see themselves in this story will feel less alone and take courage and strength from it.
3.5 Stars.

I received this eProof for free from Simon & Schuster Children's Books via NetGalley for the purposes of providing an honest review.

Trigger Warnings: This book features rape, non-consensual  pornography, sex shaming, victim blaming, bullying, discussion of abuse due to abortion, and discussion of death from cancer.

When I first heard Laura Bates was writing a YA novel, I was so excited to read it. I loved her feminist non-fiction books, Everyday Sexism and Girl Up, and I was sure Th
Chloe Metzger
Switching between a modern-day teenager hiding a secret and a young woman in the past accused of witchcraft as their stories collide, have we really changed over the centuries? Looking at the treatment of women, slut-shaming and more, welcome to The Burning.

I am a big fan of Laura Bates, her non-fiction work is not only incredibly intelligent but sparked a movement for young women. I have read all of her non-fiction and so it only made sense I would request her first YA novel. The story seemed
Karen Barber
Apr 17, 2019 rated it really liked it
The Burning is one of those books that I think all teenagers, parents and teachers should be made to read as it covers such relevant and necessary material.
It tells the story of Anna Clark who has recently moved to Scotland following an awful experience at her old school involving cyber bullying and the sharing of an intimate picture. With her mother she’s determined to get a new start, but is it ever possible to escape your online presence?
Anna’s story is told alongside the story of Maggie Mor
Gayle Noble
Following the death of her dad, Anna Clark moves to Scotland with her mum. At first it seems like the trouble from her previous school has been left behind, but it soon catches up with her. Whilst trying to cope with what is happening, Anna starts to research a previous resident who was branded a witch in the 17th century.

I just knew this book was going to be worth reading. The author cleverly links the misogyny and double standards which permeated both the witchcraft accusations of old and the
Jessica B
Apr 06, 2019 rated it really liked it
I was so incredibly uncomfortable while reading this book. It’s not a pleasant experience but it is a necessary one I think. Anna is a teenage girl who has moved to a new country and changed her name to escape a horrible public shaming but unfortunately her problems have followed her. While all of this is happening Anna is completing a history project on a local women who was accused of being a witch in 1655. The parallels between the lives of Anna and this women are staggering leaving the reade ...more
Neelam Babul
Apr 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The Burning follows Anna, who has moved to Scotland following the death of her father and after her nude photos are leaked by her boyfriend across social media. Hoping to make a new start in life, She is enrolled in a new school, in a new town, with a new name hoping to escape the rampant bullying and slut-shaming she has experienced due to her leaked photos.

Full review of the book can be found on my blog -
Jul 08, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult, 2019
This book started off quite slow, but by the middle it became really good. It tells the tale of a school girl who due to 'problems' at her previous school moves to Scotland for a new start. However, the 'problems' soon start following her.

This is an important read and covers many issues concerning social media, bullying and the pressures on girls.
Apr 07, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019, library
This was an important read, tackling a lot of tough issues. I enjoyed it, however, I felt it was a bit all over the place and the witchcraft/history subplot wasn't doing much for me.
cw: slut shaming, body shaming, rape (off page), sexual harassment, homophobic bullying
Mar 27, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Burning has been on my radar for about a month now. While I haven’t read any of them before, I’ve been interested in Laura Bates’ feminist books for a few years so when I saw she was releasing a YA book, it seemed like the perfect time to give her a go.

I was incredibly lucky to get given a copy from my bestie Angel while I was in the hospital this week.

This was a very quick read, but incredibly different from what I’d been expecting. I was expecting a hard-hitting, but kickass book dealing
Elvina Zafril
Mar 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is my first book written by Laura Bates and not going to be the last. The Burning is an interesting book and it gives a lot of meaning. So many lessons I learned from this book.

This book was well-written and the research that Bates did was enough to support all the information and content about cyber bullying and sexual harassment. Bates did quite an amazing job on this.

The pace was moderate. I felt a little bit draggy at the beginning but it's getting interesting in the middle towards th
Jan 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
5 stars isn't enough for this book. It's a book that should be read in high schools around the world. Anna's story will resonate with most young women, which is both appalling but at the same time incredibly useful. As someone who suffered through the same thing as Anna, I completely understood her and reading this book helped heal parts of me that I didn't realise were still hurting.

Thank you, Laura, for writing this novel. I, and many others, needed it.

A full review will be up on my blog soo
Alyce Hunt
New girl Anna Clark moved from Birmingham to Scotland to escape something terrible that happened in her past. But you can’t outrun your demons quite that easily, especially not when they’re plastered all over social media for the world to see.

While the other students embark on a slut-shaming mission against her, Anna has a project of her own to focus upon. She’s investigating the possibility that there may have been witches living in the little village she’s moved to, and that she may have found
Feb 13, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Thanks to Simon and Schuster UK and NetGalley for the Advance Review Copy in exchange for an honest review.

When I heard that Laura Bates of Everyday Sexism was writing a novel, I was really excited to read it. Her work is often discussed in the school in which I teach and the website and Twitter feed are used by pupils when looking at issues around sexism, social media, gender bias and peer pressure. I was keen to see whether a fictional approach would be able to tie in with the topics we’ve exp
Apr 29, 2019 rated it liked it
TW: rape, slut-shaming, bullying, revenge pornography, child pregnancy, abortion, victim blaming.

Firstly I would like to thank NetGalley for providing me a copy of this eARC; all the views and opinions discussed below are my own.

When I came to read this book I honestly couldn’t remember what the plot was and went into it not knowing, which I’m quite glad about. I honestly don’t think this is a book I would have generally avoided because its YA contemporary and it’s almost one of my least favour
Jul 07, 2019 rated it really liked it
A four star read for me but with the real-life social media bullying mixed with the slightly supernatural connection to the past, it might be a bit tricky to promote at our secondary school. Often students who want to the real life genre are not interested at all in any supernatural/paranormal elements.
This story revolves around Anna who has moved from England to Scotland with her mum for a fresh start. We are not told exactly why they had to move - it is a bit of a slow reveal. Sorry for any s
Feb 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
I received this book from the publisher via Net Galley in exchange for an honest review.

The Burning is part social commentary, part historical and part witchy fantasy. It’s a good mix. The majority is definitely more contemporary than I expected, but I really liked the way that the author dealt with the topics of sending nudes, slur shaming and social media. And I loved how the story set in the now melded with the historical aspects, folded together with a little bit of witch-magic.

It is prett
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Dumb History: The Stupidest Mistakes Ever Made
  • Murder City: The Untold Story of Canada's Serial Killer Capital, 1959-1984
  • The Real Deadwood
  • Aristocrats: Power, Grace, and Decadence: Britain's Great Ruling Classes from 1066 to the Present
  • Inheritance: The Story of Knole and the Sackvilles
  • Books That Changed The World
  • Or I'll Dress You in Mourning: The Story of El Cordobes and the New Spain He Stands For
  • The Santa Claus Man: The Rise and Fall of a Jazz Age Con Man and the Invention of Christmas in New York
  • A Treasury of Deception: Liars, Misleaders, Hoodwinkers, and the Extraordinary True Stories of History's Greatest Hoaxes, Fakes, and Frauds
  • A Season of Splendor: The Court of Mrs. Astor in Gilded Age New York
  • Terror in the City of Champions: Murder, Baseball, and the Secret Society That Shocked Depression-Era Detroit
  • Royal Pains: A Rogues' Gallery of Brats, Brutes, and Bad Seeds
  • Mrs. Astor Regrets: The Hidden Betrayals of a Family Beyond Reproach
  • The Furies
  • Chocolate Wars: The 150-Year Rivalry Between the World's Greatest Chocolate Makers
  • The Foundling: The True Story of a Kidnapping, a Family Secret, and My Search for the Real Me
  • Royal Blood: Richard III and the Mystery of the Princes
  • The Time Traveller's Guide to Restoration Britain: Life in the Age of Samuel Pepys, Isaac Newton and The Great Fire of London
See similar books…
Laura Bates is the founder of the Everyday Sexism Project, an ever-increasing collection of over 25,000 women's experiences of gender imbalance. She has written for The Guardian, The Independent, Red Magazine, Grazia, the Women's Media Center, and the New Statesman. She was named one of the Huffington Post's Most Inspirational Women of 2012 and shortlisted for the 2013 Shorty Award in activism.
No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »