Burn Out

Author: Kristi Helvig
Series: Untitled #1
Release Date: April 8, 2014
Publisher: EgmontUSA
Source: NetGalley DRC
Genre(s): YA Science Fiction

Rating: ★★☆☆☆
Review Spoilers:  Low
GoodReads | Amazon

We can’t all like every book we read and, sadly, Burn Out was not a book that really spoke to me. I was disappointed, too, because I really wanted to like it. I really wanted to enjoy it. But as much of a nerd and sci-fi fan as I am the genre can often be hit or miss for me and this time I think it was just a miss.

There are tons of more positive reviews on GoodReads so this book seems to be worth a read. I mean, everyone else who read it seemed to really like it so when I struggled to get into the book from the beginning I felt disappointed. More in myself, I suppose, than anything or anyone else. Because I do think it’s probably a pretty good book.

Tora, the main character, lives alone in an underground bunker on what she believes is desolate, dead Earth after the sun changes settings and basically burns everything to a crisp. Except the world isn’t quite as desolate as she thinks and she’s not quite as along as she may have thought. One of her father’s old buddies, Markus, comes back to get her and the stockpile of weapons her father had hidden away from the power hungry government. She has no choice but to go along with him and his band of renegades after the government figures out where she is, too. Because the thing about these weapons is that they are coded to Tora’s touch and so that puts a bit of a hitch in everyone’s plans to use them.

I’ll admit, Tora is a cool character. She’s got a bit of a ‘Buffy’ feel to her. She’s tough, she’s got dreams, and she doesn’t necessarily want to conform to what she’s necessarily supposed to be. She’s snarky and she’s not just going to be pushed around. I like characters like that because we so rarely get female leads who truly hold their own. Of course, Tora does get burdened by the same thing as most YA heroines and that’s the inevitable possible romance angle that pops up almost as soon as things start happening.

The book has quite a bit of action but the lack of true world building and the number of questions that went unanswered made it hard to enjoy the book. I wound up getting somewhere around sixty percent of the way through it before I decided to give up and add this one to my ‘to be finished’ pile. Because I do want to like this book. I do want to give it a chance. I just can’t do it right now.

Final Thoughts:
Check back with me in a few months and I may have something different to say about this book. For now all I can say is that what I read was ‘okay’ and that the ridiculous number of great reviews probably discount mine. So if you’re considering reading this book go for it. You’re more likely to like it than not!

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