Jaime Reviews ~ Burning by Danielle Rollins

By Danielle Rollins
Published on April 5, 2016
Published by: Bloomsbury USA Childrens
Source: Netgalley
Orange is the New Black gets a unique YA twist in this creepy story of the darkness that dwells in each of us.

After three years in juvie, Angela Davis is just a few months shy of release, and she'll finally be free from the hole that is Brunesfield Correctional Facility. Then Jessica arrives. Only ten years old and under the highest security possible, this girl has to be dangerous, even if no one knows what she did to land in juvie. As strange things begin happening to Angela and her friends that can only be traced to the new girl's arrival, it becomes clear that Brunesfield is no longer safe. They must find a way to get out, but how can they save themselves when the world has forgotten them?

Readers will be rooting for Angela and her friends to find the truth and save themselves in this spine-tingling story rich with secrets and conspiracies.


  Initially, my interest in Burning was the dark, creepy cover. Then I read the first line of the synopsis and saw the word "creepy", and I was pretty much hooked. Unfortunately, creepy isn't quite the word that I would use. I think I would go with "dark". Fortunately, dark isn't at all a bad thing. 

 Angela has been in juvie for three long years. She has two really good friends, Cara and Issie, and they are the only reason that life in juvenile detention is somewhat bearable. Angela has her routine down, and is doing her best to keep her nose clean, because she only has three months left. Then, finally, she can be with her little brother Charlie again. One day, juvie gets a new girl, Jessica. After Jessica's arrival, strange things begin to happen. Angela is confronted with a choice not long after Jessica's arrival, and her decision stands to change her entire world. 

 There are a lot of things that I could talk about with this book, but a lot of those things are definitely spoilers. There is a mystery that starts as soon as Jessica arrives, there is mystery surrounding Angela. I don't want to give anything away. I will simply say that Burning is an enjoyable story that will tug at your heart, make you angry, and maybe swoon a little too. The mysteries in the story are interesting, worth hanging around for. Danielle Rollins has done a really great job with character development in this story. It is very easy to distinguish between each of the characters in the book. The author's details about life inside juvie are fantastic. They made me very thankful that I never had to experience anything like it. Rollins is a good story-teller, and the book is very well-written. 

 If I had one complaint, which seems to be a complaint of mine often, it would be the pacing. It definitely got a little slow occasionally. But my interest always returned full force, with just a turn of the page. Beware the ending. It is abrupt, and harsh, and heartbreaking. It will leave you wanting more. I am really hoping that there is more, but so far, I haven't seen any mention of a sequel. Fingers crossed!

Jaime Lynn

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