First sentence: “Peach sneers at us.”
Why I wanted to read Burning: It was marketed as Orange is the New Black meets Carrie, and well, I was intrigued! I needed a bit of creepiness in my life, and did Burning manage to deliver? Ehhh, it was simply okay.
The girls of Burning consist of: Angela Davis (cares for her little brother Charlie, dyslexic, has three months left until she’s released), Cara (snarky, makes anything she wears look good, frequently talks about the possible conspiracy going around Brunesfield), Issie (super intimidating looking with her colorful tattoos and caterpillar eyes), and Jessica Ward (new inmate, ten years old, harbors dangerous abilities)
These girls are just trying to make the best out of their situation. When you’re in prison, your dorm mates are your family. That is a very true statement for Angela, Cara, and Issie, who have been at the Brunesfield Correctional Facility the longest. These girls share the tightest bond, and nothing the guards and the creepiness that happens can shake them badly. When Jessica comes into their lives, they may feel wary of her, but they eventually welcome her with opened arms, and it’s great to see this happen, especially because Jessica, who was once scared, anxious, and closed-off, opened up with these girls.
Strange things keep happening when Jessica’s around. The air shifts, lights pop, things heat up or they stop working. She has some strange power that scare the bejesus out of the other girls and guards. You just don’t know what she’s capable, and that makes her dangerous. However, when you strip the creepy things happening around her, this is a scared little girl who needs people to help her. I wanted to learn more about what she can do, but it’s never really delved into.
Tread lightly at the Brunesfield Correctional Facility. Something is in the air since Jessica arrived to the facility. The guards are throwing demerits left and right for the silliest thing like laughing too loud or walking too fast. The inmates are getting new things like shower heads and new balls, which is very odd. The changes may not be for the better.
The SciGirls are not what it seems. Girls + science. Dr. Gruen comes to Brunesfield soon after Jessica arrives, aiming to recruit girls into SciGirls, a program that helps girl explore their full potential in the science department. It actually turns out that it also helps children with unusual abilities. It may sound like a good opportunity, but there’s something about the program and Dr. Gruen that should make everyone uneasy. It’s not a good opportunity; it’s a trap! I’m disappointed with the things that were revealed about SciGirls and Dr. Gruen because there are many unanswered questions.
Creepiness factor: On a scale of 10-holy crap, my skin is crawling, and I’m gonna have nightmares to 1-what a cute story full of puppies and sunshine, I have to give Burning a 4/10. The creepiness didn’t send me quivering under my covers. I was a bit creeped out because of the unknown, but when we learn more about Jessica, any creepiness I felt surrounding her and her abilities evaporated. I wish the creepiness and the craziness was ramped up more because I found it lacking.
Should you read Burning? Eh, perhaps. If you’re intrigued by what Jessica can do and what danger lurks in Burning. I feel apathetic about the characters and their situation since I never felt invested in them. It didn’t leave a deep impression on me. Did I care about them being okay in the end? Not really. I just wanted to learn about the crazy powers that Jessica has, which I am still confused about. I think there will be a second book (it certainly seems that way by the ending + the unanswered questions), so I hope that’ll address things that weren’t addressed in Burning.