Clocking in at over 500 pages, this attempt by Han and Vivian to craft a Carrie-meets–John Tucker Must Die novel falls very...

FIRE WITH FIRE

From the Burn for Burn series , Vol. 2

Revenge might be a dish best served cold but not when it’s as unappetizing and bloated as this sequel to Burn for Burn (2012).

At first, in the aftermath of the homecoming debacle, Kat, Lillia and Mary think they’re done with revenge. But then they regroup and focus their efforts on one person: star quarterback Reeve, who broke his leg after Lillia drugged him at the dance and who used to bully the still-fragile Mary. There are signs that Reeve has a crush on Lillia, so the girls decide she will get close to Reeve and then break his heart. This has the bonus of hurting Rennie, Kat’s nemesis and Lillia’s new frenemy. The movement of Lillia to the forefront of the novel and the slow growth of her feelings for Reeve are compelling, but Kat’s relegation to the sidelines and the strange supernatural powers that Mary discovers make the book feel uneven. When the truth about Mary is finally revealed, it’s just a distraction from the more interesting plot points—and feels totally unnecessary.

Clocking in at over 500 pages, this attempt by Han and Vivian to craft a Carrie-meets–John Tucker Must Die novel falls very flat. (Fiction. 15-18)

Pub Date: Aug. 13, 2013

ISBN: 978-1-4424-4078-4

Page Count: 528

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: July 31, 2013

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2013

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Green seamlessly bridges the gap between the present and the existential, and readers will need more than one box of tissues...

THE FAULT IN OUR STARS

He’s in remission from the osteosarcoma that took one of his legs. She’s fighting the brown fluid in her lungs caused by tumors. Both know that their time is limited.

Sparks fly when Hazel Grace Lancaster spies Augustus “Gus” Waters checking her out across the room in a group-therapy session for teens living with cancer. He’s a gorgeous, confident, intelligent amputee who always loses video games because he tries to save everyone. She’s smart, snarky and 16; she goes to community college and jokingly calls Peter Van Houten, the author of her favorite book, An Imperial Affliction, her only friend besides her parents. He asks her over, and they swap novels. He agrees to read the Van Houten and she agrees to read his—based on his favorite bloodbath-filled video game. The two become connected at the hip, and what follows is a smartly crafted intellectual explosion of a romance. From their trip to Amsterdam to meet the reclusive Van Houten to their hilariously flirty repartee, readers will swoon on nearly every page. Green’s signature style shines: His carefully structured dialogue and razor-sharp characters brim with genuine intellect, humor and desire. He takes on Big Questions that might feel heavy-handed in the words of any other author: What do oblivion and living mean? Then he deftly parries them with humor: “My nostalgia is so extreme that I am capable of missing a swing my butt never actually touched.” Dog-earing of pages will no doubt ensue.

Green seamlessly bridges the gap between the present and the existential, and readers will need more than one box of tissues to make it through Hazel and Gus’ poignant journey. (Fiction. 15 & up)

Pub Date: Jan. 10, 2012

ISBN: 978-0-525-47881-2

Page Count: 272

Publisher: Dutton

Review Posted Online: Jan. 10, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2012

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An unflinching portrayal of the devastating effects of domestic violence.

WATCH OVER ME

After a horrific domestic violence incident, Zoey Ward and her family finally find their footing in Las Vegas only to have their lives overturned by a house fire.

Learning that her father has been recently released from prison, Zoey suspects he had something to do with the blaze. After their lives go up in flames, literally, Zoey along with her mom and her younger siblings, Kate and Cole, flee Las Vegas with the help of her older brother, Will, and his best friend, Tristan. They take refuge in California, where Tristan and his sister welcome them into a world where things seem hopeful and more stable than anything they have ever known. Yet the fear of being hunted down by her father consumes Zoey. The story is narrated from Zoey’s and Tristan’s first-person perspectives, and Gray (Run Away With Me, 2017, etc.) has masterfully captured the uncertainty and terror that come from domestic violence. Tristan and Zoey share a budding romance in which Zoey slowly but surely learns to love and be loved in a nondestructive, healthy way despite her fears and reservations. With everything she has been through, Zoey is the underdog readers will find themselves rooting for. Gray spares no detail in this intense tale. All characters are assumed to be white; Tristan is dyslexic, and there are several queer characters.

An unflinching portrayal of the devastating effects of domestic violence. (Fiction. 16-adult)

Pub Date: Dec. 3, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-5344-4281-8

Page Count: 352

Publisher: Simon Pulse/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: Sept. 10, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1, 2019

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