Tuesday, 4 February 2014

Burn by Julianna Baggott

review by Maryom

Well, here we are at the end of Julianna Baggott's Prime Trilogy - Pure, Fuse and now Burn. If you haven't caught any of it, (though why haven't you?) it's set in a brilliantly-conceived post-apocalyptic dystopia, where the Detonations have changed the world, dividing the population into two groups - the Pure who took refuge in the protected environment of the Dome, and the Wretches who were forced to stay outside and were altered by the blasts, often fused to objects or other people they were near to at the time of the blasts. A bleak world with little hope for either side unless a way can be found for them to live together.

I don't want to talk too much about the plot because almost anything will give away spoilers for the earlier books - and you do have to have read them first. Pressia now feels she has found a possible cure for the Wretches' sufferings but the only people with the knowledge to apply it are inside the Dome - with Partridge returned there, is it possible that the Pure will help? Well, sadly, with Partridge in charge it's not very likely. Power hasn't quite corrupted him, but it certainly seems to have taken away his ability to make decisions; dithering between options he ends up led by others. While Pressia wants to save everyone, and Partridge wants to preserve the status quo,  El Capitan and Bradwell are both determined, for differing reasons, to bring down the Dome whatever the personal cost, and Lyda wants to save herself; after her experiences outside, the Dome now feels fake but she's virtually imprisoned there.

I thought things started out a little lumpy and bumpy - there were so many separate threads up and running that none went far before swapping to another. As events brought the threads back together and the story picked up pace, I became as gripped as before. For a novel of slightly over 400 pages, it certainly flew past!
I had half dreaded that after the first two books, the author might choose to round everything off in some easy, unrealistic, happy ever after finale  - I'm decidedly pleased that she didn't! I think how you view the ending will depend on which character you had most sympathy for, but for me it was a satisfying 'in character' climax, desperately sad but still filled with hope.

Maryom's review - 4.5 stars
Publisher -
Headline Publishing
Genre - YA Sci-Fi/Dystopian

Buy Burn (Prime Trilogy 3) from Amazon

Other reviews; For Winter Nights, 
                       Curiosity Killed the Bookworm


  1. Fab review, Mary! I didn't get the same thrill from Burn that I did from the other two but I, too, was satisfied by the ending.

    1. Thanks for dropping by. I've now added a link to your review - it's curious that we both liked the series but had different favourite bits. Mine was definitely the first book with a whole new world to discover.