Monday, 20 January 2014

Review&Interview&Giveaway! Fuse and Burn by Julianna Baggott

Fuse (Pure Trilogy #2)
Released: 12 February 2013
Genre: Dystopian, Post Apocalyptic, Romance
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing

At the Other End:
We want our son returned. This girl is proof that we can save you all. If you ignore our plea, we will kill our hostages one at a time.

To be a Pure is to be perfect, untouched by Detonations that scarred the earth and sheltered inside the paradise that is the Dome. But Partridge escaped to the outside world, where Wretches struggle to survive amid smoke and ash. Now, at the command of Partridge’s father, the Dome is unleashing nightmare after nightmare upon the Wretches in an effort to get him back.

At Partridge’s side is a small band of those united against the Dome: Lyda, the warrior; Bradwell, the revolutionary; El Capitan, the guard; and Pressia, the young woman whose mysterious past ties her to Partridge in way she never could have imagined. Long ago a plan was hatched that could mean the earth’s ultimate doom. Now only Partridge and Pressia can set things right.

To save millions of innocent lives, Partridge must risk his own by returning to the Dome and facing his most terrifying challenge. And Pressia, armed only with a mysterious Black Box, containing a set of cryptic clues, must travel to the very ends of the earth, to a place where no map can guide her. If they succeed, the world will be saved. But should they fail, humankind will pay a terrible price...

Sum Up:
Fuse is intriguing and complex, diving straight back into the story again from Pure, taking you on a whirl-wind adventure.

Behind the 416 Pages
I kind of struggled with this book a little bit. Not in the way that is wasn't entertaining, but in the way that I was too focused on trying to remember what happened in Pure, that I didn't really focus on much else for a little ways into this book.  I get why Baggott didn't really give us much of a re-cap into Pure, and you realize why after you finish Fuse. But it's because there really isn't enough room for a good re-cap of the first book, which is why you really need to read this series together! I felt lost in the beginning, and then when I remembered it all, everything started to get a whole lot more interesting! Events beyond what I even thought were possible were made reality in this book, and they take you by the hand an squeeze you until you're frantically turning the pages to find out what is in store next.

This world is so detailed and literally is dripping of pure imagination, that you don't know what will come next, you are hanging on every word, and every little thing that they all do. There was high stakes, and tension between the characters, that made me want to hold on and keep on going. The world that has been build has made way for so many possibilities that anything and everything could happen, and we won't even see it coming.

I never really liked Partridge as much as I would have liked. I like how he loves Pressia and the rest of the gang, even though they have only known each other for such a short period of time. We believe his motives for wanting to go back in the Dome, and we can see that he will be the one to make the world a better place from inside the Dome. But I still believe my original thoughts of him from the first book, he is too innocent (even though he doesn't seem so innocent when he is in the cottage with Lyda ;) ), and it doesn't do him any good in the book where everyone else is such a strong character (the only other annoyingly stupid characters are the Dome worshipers, and I wanted to just smack them in the face, seriously). 

I love El Capitan and Helmud so much more in this book! We get to see so much more of them, and we see how they change as well from being OSR soldiers to the people they are today. I don't want to give anything away, but we really start to see El Capitan in a completely different light when they start the major part of their journey. We see him as just another survivor of the detonations, and we also get to see Helmud given the respect and recognition that he deserves! The two start to look out for each other a lot more in this book, and we can see them grow together and start to become more of a team, than how you first see it in Pure as just one man carrying the burden of another on his back.

I mentioned how much I love Bradwell in Pure. Well that certainly doesn't change!! I am definitely sailing on the Bradwell ship and I do not intend to ever leave :) As the book goes on, I can't help but love him even more. Even though things were tough, Bradwell and Pressia got through things together and their relationship became stronger because of it. Even though the end of the book made my eyes wide and my hand came to cover my open mouth in shock and awe at what happens, I still know that things are going to be ok, and that he is still beautiful (if you haven't read Fuse then you probably don't understand what I'm talking about, but you will if you read!!).

I love the little side characters in this book, Wilda and Finigan. Pressia seems to grow a lot more with Wilda there, and she takes care of her and is there for her, like a younger sister. Now add Finigan to the mix, as Bradwell's "best friend", and you really start to love the quirkiness that is Finigan and his flashy lights and infinite knowledge! The only side character that I didn't like was Iralene. SHE WAS SO ANNOYING!!!!!!!! SHE IS EVEN MORE STUPIDLY INNOCENT THAN PARTRIDGE! I really didn't like reading about them. Sometimes, I had hope for her. Like she was just acting that way so she can survive. But most of the time, it's like she wasn't acting like that, and was literally some typical blonde bimbo. Warning. You will get frustrated with her...

Pressia. What can you not love about this girl. She is strong, and her willpower is amazing. She will do whatever it takes to make the world better for all the people, not just for those outside the Dome. Sure, sometimes her thoughts on it all are not thought out, and we can see what is wrong with her plans of the future, and how idealistic parts of it is. 

I thought that Baggott did a brilliant job with the different POV's. Even though some of the characters were together, we understood exactly what was happening, as well as getting into the current protagonists' thoughts. We didn't get lost or confused, and I really enjoyed getting to see different points of view from Pressia, Bradwell, El Capitan, Partridge and Lyda.

The ending is explosive! I really can't describe it any less than that. Reading this on my eReader, I kept on looking at how many pages were left towards the end, and I was tearing myself apart, because I kept on thinking of how much more needs to happen, and the end of the book is so close! You are left with so many questions, and you wonder how everything will play out from there.
Burn (Pure Trilogy #3)
Released: 4 February 2014
Genre: Dystopian, Post Apocalyptic, Romance
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
Buy Me: Amazon  |  Barnes & Noble  |   Book Depository
At the Other End of Burn:
The fate of the world is more fragile than ever as Pures battle Wretches and former allies become potential enemies.

Inside the Dome Patridge has taken his father's place as leader of the Pures. His intent had been to bring down the Dome from the inside with the help of the secret resistance force led by Partridge's former teacher Glassings. But from his new position of power, things don't seem quite as clear. Perhaps his father had been right. Perhaps if the world is to survive it needs the Dome--and Partridge--to rule it.

Outside the Dome Pressia and Bradwell continue piecing together the clues left to them by their parents from the time before the detonations. Soon they will be able to help heal the Wretches, freeing them from their monstrous fusings and the Dome's oppression once and for all. But their success also depends on Partridge. Can they still trust their friend and ally to see their plan through? Or will a new war begin?

Sum Up:
My heart is torn in two and I'm shocked. I am in Post-Burn depression. I honestly don't know what to say, it was amazing.

Behind the 432 Pages
After finishing this series, I came to the following conclusion on what new Pure trilogy readers, and old readers need to do before you start Burn:
With this whole series, to be able to fully get into it like what it is intended to, you need to read all three books one after another. So if you haven't started this series yet, DON'T! Burn will be releasing soon, so I suggest that you wait for this (especially after the ending in Fuse, you're going to want to grab this book straight away!)


There are definitely things in the finale that I loved and didn't love. Some of the choices that were made, and especially the nerve of some people. But most of all, I didn't really love the ending... (more on ending below)

This book continues straight where Fuse left off. We can tell that this book is going to be all action packed, as we race to the finale! Things start to unwind and the stakes are high, and Baggott keeps you guessing the whole way through! You don't have any idea what is about to happen or what might happen in the coming chapters.

The characters that we have grown to know and love, are transformed completely, becoming stronger for the end and for the change. The stakes are extremely high in this book, for every character, and we are right alongside them every step of the way. We feel for them, and we scream with them, and we argue with them..

Things are definitely tense in this book, with everything coming together and unexpected things that happened at the end of Fuse, we are completely hooked and can't get enough. I definitely miss Bradwell's perspective in this book, but because of such unexpected circumstances at the end of Fuse, we understand why. I think, now that I have finished the book and look back at this, I believe that it is better that we didn't get to see Bradwell's perspective. After what has happened, he doesn't really know who he is, or even recognize himself anymore or the person that he is with Pressia. From the events in this book, that happened towards the end, I think that showing Bradwell's POV would have given some of the ending away. 

So, you know how I haven't really liked Partridge throughout the series? Well, after this book, I really do hate him. Seriously, I hate him. I can't even explain the level of hate I have for him now. And I still find Iralene just as annoying. These two are just as bad as each other. Most of the things that Partridge suggests for a "better life", sure they are full of hope and it would make everything so perfect la-de-da-de-da blah blah blah. He doesn't see the repercussions that this will have on the people of the Dome, as well as the people outside. You know here that he he is still a child, doing what a privileged child would do. BLEH.

moving on.....

I absolutely love Pressia and Bradwell at the end. The moment between them was....magical *sigh* It was like a dream, a perfect and wonderful and happy dream, that got us out of our frantic page turning, that I literally had to take a deep breath and what was happening. It was seriously, beautiful. I can't say any more than that, there are no words to describe how breathtaking that scene is. It made us slow down, and take a deep breath that we really needed before the main event started!

I really can't believe what happened in the end. Seriously, W.T.F HAPPENED!!!! I am still in shock over this (this is the #1 symptom of Post-Burn depression and what happened is 99.5% the reason for this serious depression. NOTE. this depression will only occur after you have either, 1.Read the entire trilogy one after another; or 2. Read Fuse and Burn right after each other). I balled my eyes out, literally. I'm even tearing up just thinking about it (not that I'm going to say what happened), I madly went through pages after that. I didn't want it to be true, and I so badly hoped that this wasn't the choice that he made, knowing what will happen because of it!

So, like I was saying about the ending. To be honest, I thought it was lacking. I felt that there were so many things that I wanted to see happen and for it all to wrap up nicely, but they didn't. Before I knew it, I ran out of pages and I was just sitting here thinking what am I going to do now. The end of this book is numbing. I think I know what Baggott is trying to get with at the end, like she wants us to fill in the blanks with what we might think will happen. What I am really hoping for, is that we get some sort of 'After Pure' novella or something that tells us what happened, then we can match it with out own reality. You could comfortably fit a few more chapters in this book, just to give us what happens to everyone instead of leaving it as it was, without much detail on anything else. The ending felt completely different to the rest of the book. It didn't have as much detail as all three books did, and that is what made me felt like it was lacking as well. And there was this other, weird feeling that happened as I read the final pages. It felt like a movie, seriously, like a movie. The way that the ending was written, like it was showing each character's position and what they were going to do, and then after we know what they are going to do it fades out and goes to the next character. From there it keeps on going from each character until we are just left with Pressia finishing the book. That bit I loved. I love how she was the final voice in the book.
What's Next:
Pure (Pure Trilogy #1)
Behind 431 Pages
Released: 8 February 2012
Genre: Dystopian, Post Apocalyptic, Romance
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
At the Other End:
We know you are here, our brothers and sisters . . . 
Pressia barely remembers the Detonations or much about life during the Before. In her sleeping cabinet behind the rubble of an old barbershop where she lives with her grandfather, she thinks about what is lost-how the world went from amusement parks, movie theaters, birthday parties, fathers and mothers . . . to ash and dust, scars, permanent burns, and fused, damaged bodies. And now, at an age when everyone is required to turn themselves over to the militia to either be trained as a soldier or, if they are too damaged and weak, to be used as live targets, Pressia can no longer pretend to be small. Pressia is on the run.

Burn a Pure and Breathe the Ash . . . 
There are those who escaped the apocalypse unmarked. Pures. They are tucked safely inside the Dome that protects their healthy, superior bodies. Yet Partridge, whose father is one of the most influential men in the Dome, feels isolated and lonely. Different. He thinks about loss-maybe just because his family is broken; his father is emotionally distant; his brother killed himself; and his mother never made it inside their shelter. Or maybe it's his claustrophobia: his feeling that this Dome has become a swaddling of intensely rigid order. So when a slipped phrase suggests his mother might still be alive, Partridge risks his life to leave the Dome to find her. 

When Pressia meets Partridge, their worlds shatter all over again.

Author Bio:
Critically acclaimed, bestselling author Julianna Baggott is the author of eighteen books, most notably her recent novel PURE, the first in a dystopian trilogy, a New York Times Book Review's Editor's Choice and a People magazine pick for books to read after the Hunger Games, on a list with Orson Scott Card and Philip Pullman. There are over fifty overseas editions of her books. 

She’s the author of the National Bestseller Girl Talk, The Madam, and The Provence Cure for the Brokenhearted, for adult readers; and The Anybodies Trilogy and The Prince of Fenway Park for younger readers; as well as three collections of poetry, including Lizzie Borden in Love. She co-wrote Which Brings Me to You with Steve Almond, A Best Book of 2006 (Kirkus Reviews), which is optioned by producer Richard Brown and adapted by Keith Bunin with Matthew Warchus set to direct.

Her work has appeared in The New York Times, Washington Post, Boston Globe, Best American Poetry, Best Creative Nonfiction, NPR’s Talk of the Nation, All Things Considered, and Here & Now. For two years, her alter-ego, N. E. Bode was a recurring personality on XM Radio. Her work has been a People Magazine pick alongside David Sedaris and Bill Clinton, a Washington Post Book of the Week, a Girl's Life Top Ten, a Booksense selection, and a Starbucks Bookish Reading Club pick.

Find Julianna:

Goodreads  |  Pure Trilogy Website  |  Julianna Baggott Website  |  Facebook  |  Twitter
1. Where have we seen you before? (previous projects/works)
I’ve been orbiting out here for a while. I'm the author of 17 books before THE PURE TRILOGY, under my own name and pen names N.E. Bode (THE ANYBODIES TRILOGY) and Bridget Asher (THE PROVENCE CURE FOR THE BROKENHEARTED). I have three collections of poetry from university presses, and I’ve written essays for THE NEW YORK TIMES, WASHINGTON POST,  INTERNATIONAL HERALD TRIBUNE, BOSTON GLOBE, NPR’S TALK OF THE NATION and ALL THINGS CONSIDERED, to name a few.

2. What goes through your mind after your novel has been on sale for the first week?

Weirdly, in the first week, you kind of have feeling for how it’s going to go. A lot of press has already decided on coverage – or not. The difference is in books for younger readers. That’s a different world. Books can grow over the years and be selling more in year four than year one. So, what am I thinking? I’m thinking usually of ways to protect my relationship with the page – going public is hard. It’s hard when it’s great and it’s hard when a book isn’t selling, for me. I’ll never get used to it. And so I find ways to hunker to the page – words and worlds and characters. That’s why I’m really here and what sustains me.

3. What inspired you to write this novel?

17 million little notions  firing up like small motes of dust in sun inspired me., but none were enough to sustain the brute work of writing an entire novel, much less a trilogy. So mostly, I rely on work – hours, days, and years.

4. What do you think about when getting/seeing negative reviews?

Sometimes there’s something in a negative review that’s dead-on – they tapped a central struggle in the process of writing that novel. Sometimes a positive review derails me. The book that someone loves is loved for the wrong reasons. My reactions to reviews are completely and utterly unpredictable. Good or bad, I like them when they take the book on its own terms and it feels like a smart conversation. Good or bad, a review that feels like a complete misunderstanding of my intentions is hard. Obviously, I crave to be understood – more than liked – and so misunderstanding – even in a glowing review – can feel like failure – because it is.

5. How long was the writing/planning process?

This is hard to say. I worked on the idea in the back of my mind for a long time and I also worked on stories that turned into the book  in different ways.  And then I was on deadline for other books so writing PURE was done in fits and spurts – clandestine, too, when no one was keeping tabs on me, which gives a sense of urgency to the work.

6. What was your reaction to the cover art when you saw it for the first time? Did you have any ideas from the days of writing/inspiration?

I loved the cover of BURN immediately. We went through a number of color schemes but the origami swan on fire was always the centerpiece. I can be hard on covers. Sometimes I have ideas but in this case I relied on a brilliant art department and trusted them completely.

7. Any plans for future writing projects? Any being worked on now?

THE BLOOMED LIFE OF HARRIET WOLF comes out in March 2015 or so. I’m in edit-mode now.

8. Top 5 books

Hey, sorry. I always write HIGH FIDELITY by Nick Hornby, which has a small plot line of the main character being kind of driven crazy by making a list of his favourite songs  for Desert Island Discs. I can’t do Top Lists. Peder Zane has this great ongoing site asking writers for their Top Tens . I’ve never been able to comply.

9. What book/s from other authors do you wish you had written?

When I read ONE HUNDRED YEARS OF SOLITUDE at 17, I thought – My God. Someone’s done it. It was like having some ideal of literature that you barely knew you had and it’s ill-formed and chalky and clouded – and then you pick up a book and every page tightens the focus on your ideal. By the end of the book, I was stunned that it could be done, but I felt it was some perfected notion of the novel and what it could be.

10. Why read your novel? 

I think of BURN (and the entire trilogy) as poetic post-apocalyptic – like I’d made a pact with the reader that I would give them intense plotting and characterization and, in exchange, they’d allow me some dark-finery of my subconscious and bursts of language. I hope it feeds a lot of different kinds of readers for different reasons.


Now for a special surprise!

A big thanks to Grand Central Publishing for providing the giveaway copies!


a Rafflecopter giveaway

This novel was received for review via Grand Central Publishing. This review is entirely my own, no bribery or any deals have been made to sway this review or change my personal opinion of the novel.

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