Saturday, 1 August 2015

Burn Girl by Mandy Mikulencak

Author: Mandy Mikulencak
Pages 288
Expected Publication Date: September 1 2015
Publisher: Albert Whitman and Company

       Arlie knows what to do when she finds her mother dead after a purposeful overdose. Arlie has spent her life taking care of her mother and spent a great deal of time running from her step-father, Loyd, who is responsible for a meth lab explosion that left Arlie's face disfigured when she was young. Arlie has never been more afraid in her entire life than now. Now she's alone. She has taken care of herself as long as she can remember, her mother wasn't exactly the most reliable, but now even she's gone.

      After a few weeks, Frank, an uncle of Arlie's that was previously unknown to her, is appointed her legal guardian. A world of new opportunities opens up to Arlie. She has a place to call home now, she goes to school, and is falling for a boy named Cody. Arlie's life is looking up in ways she didn't know could ever change, but  then Loyd comes back in the picture, Demanding things. With him in her life, she knows it could ruin all the progress she's made to be better, and he could easily ruin the relationships she's made, and she'll be damned if she lets that happen.


       I like the cover of this book. I like how it looks washed out and the title stands out nicely. I also like how the model on the cover's face isn't shown. I feel like that symbolizes Arlie and how she hides her face because of the scar she was left with after the meth lab explosion


       Arlie is wonderful. She's strong and sensible most of the time, and she seems like a real person, she seems like somebody that would really exist. She's not too flawed, and she's not too perfect, she's the perfect middle ground and I couldn't get enough of her.
       After reading some reviews of Burn Girl I couldn't help but notice that some people found Arlie to be reckless and exasperatingly so. Arlie does do some reckless things, but I feel as though she really does think about what she's doing and she isn't being selfish. Maybe she could contemplate things a little more but I really do believe that she is trying to do what's best.


       Frank is such a good character and I loved every scene with him in it. He was so light-hearted and I loved how much he took taking care of Arlie seriously, despite not knowing anything of her prior to his sisters death.  


       I loved Mo as well.  I like how she always cared for Arlie and always made sure to have faith in her. I also like how in the scene where Mo tells Arlie that she is "so sick of her sh*t" it doesn't come off as a mean insult, it's like more of an aggressive way to remind Arlie that people care about her, and if she puts herself in dangerous situations, it'll hurt her and her other friends as well.


       I liked Cody. I liked the relationship he had with Arlie, I feel as though they are a perfect fit because Cody understands the struggle of feeling different because of something that isn't of the persons control.


       I love this book, the characters were fantastic and I was never bored while reading it, something about the book kept me wanting to turn the page and find out what's next, the book ends with a quietness that I found fitting and I am very happy with every aspect of this book.

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