Review: Fire with Fire – Jenny Han & Siobhan Vivian

Fire with Fire Jenny Han Siobhan Vivian

Title: Fire with Fire
Author: Jenny Han, Siobhan Vivian
Series: Burn for Burn #2
Publisher: Simon & Schuster BFYR
Publication Date: August 13, 2013
Source/Format: Library / Hardcover, 528 pages
Opening Sentence: “I couldn’t decide what to wear.”
Author Website (Han and Vivian) | Goodreads | Amazon

When sweet revenge turns sour…

Lillia, Kat, and Mary had the perfect plan. Work together in secret to take down the people who wronged them. But things didn’t exactly go the way they’d hoped at the Homecoming Dance.

Not even close.

For now, it looks like they got away with it. All they have to do is move on and pick up the pieces, forget there ever was a pact. But it’s not easy, not when Reeve is still a total jerk and Rennie’s meaner than she ever was before.

And then there’s sweet little Mary…she knows there’s something seriously wrong with her. If she can’t control her anger, she’s sure that someone will get hurt even worse than Reeve was. Mary understands now that it’s not just that Reeve bullied her—it’s that he made her love him.

Eye for an eye, tooth for a tooth, burn for a burn. A broken heart for a broken heart. The girls are up to the task. They’ll make Reeve fall in love with Lillia and then they will crush him. It’s the only way he’ll learn.

It seems once a fire is lit, the only thing you can do is let it burn…

Last year when I read Burn for Burn there wasn’t a whole lot of hype for the series. I had stumbled across the book by chance and decided to read it. For Fire with Fire, though, I came across a ton of people who were excited and all had something to say about the books. The most common thing being said: Fire with Fire was better than Burn for Burn. I’m not even going to touch on that because I can hardly remember Burn for Burn, though that might say more than I can.

But that’s not the question, is it? The question is: Did I like it? In short: yes.

The long answer:
I was extremely excited to read Fire with Fire by Jenny Han and Siobhan Vivian. The last book ended at a major cliffhanger and I was dying of anticipation. I had a basic idea of what to expect in Fire with Fire, but otherwise I didn’t know what was in store. And let me tell you: this book really gets down into the depths of the hole Mary, Kat, and Lillia dug for themselves.

This installment of the story really jerked me around a lot. Sometimes I hated certain characters and other times I really like them. I felt bad for them and then I was reminded why they were horrible. And the relationships, oh, the relationships. While I was reading I felt like I had no idea which relationships I wanted to grow into something more. One chapter it was these two people and the next it was those two… There’s not even a “love triangle”, but it’s almost as confusing and emotional as when there is. Who do I want to be with who? I have no idea. And it wasn’t even just romance that was like that. The feeling extended to friendships as well. I don’t want to say Fire with Fire was emotional, because it wasn’t in that way, but I really did spend a lot of the novel torn in a bunch of different directions. I’d say it was bad, but I actually really liked it. It helped me to get more invested in the story and characters. It was really a whirlwind.

In the last book I liked most of the characters but connected with and favored Mary the most. Unfortunately that feeling didn’t extend through this book. I found Mary sort of annoying and generally less likable. There was no such problem with Kat or Lillia, though. While Kat has her moments when I dislike her she’s a pretty kickass friend and someone I enjoy reading about. My love, though, really extends to Lillia. In Burn for Burn I wasn’t really taken to Lillia in a special way, but in Fire with Fire I felt myself hoping everything turns out well for her. And for Kat too. (And for all the secondary characters too. Can’t forget them!)

I was plagued with the second book slump at first, but I really grew to like Fire with Fire. This book ended with a pretty unsettling but amazing cliffhanger* and I absolutely cannot wait for Ashes to Ashes to come out next year. I definitely recommend Fire with Fire to everyone who has read Burn for Burn already. Haven’t read BfB? Get on it! Now comes the excruciating wait for the conclusion.

Rating: 4 of 5 stars

*It was rather enlightening too. Right after I read it a million and one things from earlier in the story clicked into place and really sort of changed my feelings. I’m super excited to read the next book, but I’m also a bit worried about what’s going to happen.

Reviews from the rest of the series:
Burn for Burn (#1)


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