Burning by Danielle Rollins



Author: Danielle Rollins
Published: April 5, 2016 by Bloomsbury USA Children’s

Summary: After three years in juvie, Angela Davis is just a few months shy of release, and she’ll finally be free from the hole that is Brunesfield Correctional Facility. Then Jessica arrives. Only ten years old and under the highest security possible, this girl has to be dangerous, even if no one knows what she did to land in juvie. As strange things begin happening to Angela and her friends that can only be traced to the new girl’s arrival, it becomes clear that Brunesfield is no longer safe. They must find a way to get out, but how can they save themselves when the world has forgotten them?

Review: This book was the perfect balance between realistic, interesting characters and chilling, creepy fantastic characters. From the first moment that I met Jessica, my skin began to crawl. Angela, the narrator, is pushing a mop in Seg in the juvenile hall. Jessica is mysterious and quite scary. I was frightened right along with Angela! I love how the characters are developed. While the book is definitely fantastic, I felt genuinely connected with the characters and their stories. I’d use this book as a bridge to help students who love realistic fiction. It would help them explore different genres. The book ends with a hook, and I imagined that Rollins has a sequel in the works! I am very excited to read it!

Teacher’s Tools for Navigation: I imagine that this book will create genuine interest in juvenile halls. I’d ask students to explore and research their own juvenile halls. They might also examine privilege and how the characters’ home lives seems to play a role in the fact that they are in the correctional facility. This would offer an interesting class discussion.

Discussion Questions: Does Angela make good choices in this book? What are some of the choices she makes, and do you think she makes the right decisions? Is she a moral person?; Most of the characters in this book are female. Consider all of the male characters and determine what their role is. How do they add to the story?

We Flagged: “I’m so focused on the blinking red light that I don’t notice the skeletally thin girl in the cell to my left until she skitters across the floor on her hands and knees” (p. 51).

Read This If You Loved: The Merciless by Danielle Vega, Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake, Anything by Stephen King; Juvie Three by Gordon Korman

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