Review: Girls on Fire by Robin Wasserman


United By Pop received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review, all opinions are our own.

Title: Girls on Fire

Author: Robin Wasserman

Purchase: Available in the UK and the US.

Overall rating: 5/5 stars

Great for: Fans on dark contemporary, in the style of Megan Abbott.

Themes: Mystery, crime, thriller, contemporary, young adult, coming-of-age.

Review: This is one of the darkest, deepest and most dazzling books I have ever read!

‘Girls on Fire’ follows the story of the dark and almost obsessive relationship between high-school best friends, Hannah and Lacey. I mistakenly, initially took this for a preppy, happy, contemporary read (not my thing) until reviews told me otherwise. The words ‘satanic’, ‘dark’ and ‘fanatical’ were used and my interest was piqued. I am so glad it was as I think this may have taken the top spot for the best book I have read this year, so far!

I opened this book when my mood was low and I wanted to sink into something as dark as the growing night around me. This is an austere read and it did nothing to alleviate my disposition but it did everything to suck me right in! There was latent evil, fanatical behaviour, obsessive jealousy, raw and unabashed emotion and outright immaturity demonstrated from each and every character, and yet I identified with them all and could forgive them all their wrongdoings. I fell in love with them and I fell in love with their lives. There was little inherent goodness in this book and that made me look for it all the more.

And in amongst the darkness, I found beauty. Wassermen can tell a story! His subtlety of storytelling was actually what I fell in love with, as I wasn’t reading this book at all; I was experiencing it!

There is no way around it, this book is dark! It often transgresses on the taboo and is never apologetic in its language or actions. There is a rawness and realness to the writing that I can only explain felt like a feral scream clawing its way out of the author’s pen. This book had to be born! This story had to be told! It might be a dark creation, but it was a necessary one all the same.

And yet the dark places this book took me too never felt too…wrong, for want of a better world. This troubles me as there was nothing at all good in this book, in respect to the character’s individual actions and relationships with each other. And yet it was all forgivable, even when it should not have been. I can’t explain how the author aligned me with the protagonists but he did!

It might have been the subtleness of the shifts between actual evil and between teen wrongdoings that allowed me to be sucked into this books madness. Its dark and sexual undertones often border on the salacious but never on the smutty. The dark path this book transgresses on is elucidated in the character’s minds and the ones that aren’t are the only ones that tip the hierarchy of wrongdoing.

Whatever it was, I am just as unashamedly obsessed as Hannah and Lacey.

  1. Bill says

    These are really great ideas in on the topic of blogging.
    You have touched some good points here. Any
    way keep up wrinting.

  2. Jason says

    Wow, this piece of writing is pleasant, my sister is analyzing these things, so I am going to
    tell her.

Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.