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January 23, 2015

Liked It: Atlanta Burns by Chuck Wendig

Series: Atlanta Burns 1-2
Format: eGalley
Release Date: January 27, 2015
Publisher: Skyscape
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Genre: Contemporary-MYA
BLURB:
You don’t mess with Atlanta Burns.

Everyone knows that. And that’s kinda how she likes it—until the day Atlanta is drawn into a battle against two groups of bullies and saves a pair of new, unexpected friends. But actions have consequences, and when another teen turns up dead—by an apparent suicide—Atlanta knows foul play is involved. And worse: she knows it’s her fault.

You go poking rattlesnakes, maybe you get bit.

Afraid of stirring up the snakes further by investigating, Atlanta turns her focus to the killing of a neighborhood dog. All paths lead to a rural dogfighting ring, and once more Atlanta finds herself face-to-face with bullies of the worst sort. Atlanta cannot abide letting bad men do awful things to those who don’t deserve it. So she sets out to unleash her own brand of teenage justice.

Will Atlanta triumph? Or is fighting back just asking for a face full of bad news?


QUOTABLE QUOTES:
Life is equal parts strange and beautiful and horrible, and we're tossed into it without a map or an instruction guide. Poems and stories have a way of helping us make sense of things.

Suicide is selfish. Doesn't do squat but leave behind a lot of mess. Worst of all, it makes sure that the bullies win. Because now they live in a world with one less person they hate-in a world that looks suddenly a little more like them.


Since reading Miriam Black, Chuck Wendig's become one of my favorite male authors. His books are so graphic and animated they read like movies, his lead characters are flawed and fit the anti-hero bill perfectly, his plots are provoking and at times it takes on socially relevant themes which makes the story accessible to the readers to a degree. Such is the case with ATLANTA BURNS, a contemporary MYA story about a reluctant and unconventional heroine that found herself fighting some pretty powerful people with sheer cleverness and lots of gusto. Liked the book, loved the girl.

The Girl
Like Miriam Black, ATLANTA BURNS is an outsider and gained infamy after she blasted off her mother's latest beau's manly bits. And because of her curious reputation, Atlanta became the poster girl for the bullied and the go-to chick for even curiouser cases. I love Atlanta Burns, she's such a toughie on the outside but a softie on the inside. She's a ball-buster and has major anger issues, very loyal, very witty, and hard to outsmart. She's going to be one heck of a heroine, this one.

The Book
I loved that ATLANTA BURNS took on relevant themes like bullying, racial discrimination, and other forms of bigotry led by some Neo-Nazi group disguised as a gun club. The book was divided in two major parts, the suicide due to bullying and the dogfight. Though both are good storylines, part 1 was too short especially as it appears to be the main arc of the book, and part 2 felt like a distraction because towards the end, the story eventually came back to Shane's death and the circumstances that surrounds it. Apart from the choppy feel of the novel, Atlanta's character development was slow if not non-existent. I just didn't feel like she changed a whole lot throughout her ordeal, whatever good characteristics she exhibited I think was already there in the beginning so it wasn't a big surprise to learn that ATLANTA BURNS cares more than she appears to be. 

Though I have a few gripes, I love the feel of ATLANTA BURNS. It's packed with action and I enjoyed the David-and-Goliath-like conflict that's escalating fast. I can easily see this as a graphic novel, I think the scenes would look spectacular illustrated and I believe it will do wonders for the story. Now I hope there's a second book in the making as CWendig mentioned in his note that this book came into existence thanks to a kickstarter project, I hope he has enough money leftover to write the next one.







23 comments:

  1. This sounds like a fantastic book, Braine! I'm glad you put this on my radar. I'm a fan of heroines who are the champion of the oppressed, so I'm excited to meet Atlanta. The other story arches sounds like fun as well. :)

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    1. Well then, I hope you like it. I know you've been into manga and graphic novels lately, this has that feel to it albeit being a book.

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  2. It is hard to resist a flawed hero isn't it?
    Great review!

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    1. Very. They're more relatable and believable than the goody goody ones

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  3. Another from Chuck Wendig! I happen to be listening to the Cormorant (on last 2 chapters), and I really enjoying it! Miriam Black is just a hoot!! Thanks to you I'm now a Wendig's fan too.
    Thanks for the intro to the new series, I like the sound of the social issues this on tackles. I'm very curious.

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    1. Yay! CWendig is an amazing storyteller

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  4. The name is familiar, but why...(other than that he is an author, duh)

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    1. Bwahahaha! I think he writes screenplays too?

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  5. I need to try more graphic novels. This one sounds amusing.

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    1. I can't get into graphic novels, oddly they bore me :(

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  6. Sounds interesting, but I'll stick with Miriam :D

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  7. It's a shame you had a few issues with this one. Sometimes you need real growth from characters. Great review!

    Naomi @ Nomi’s Paranormal Palace

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    1. In this story, I wanted it to be this huge change. Oh well, maybe I'll get it in the next one

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  8. I'm liking that cover. Not sure the book is for me but glad you enjoyed it :)

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    1. I know you love romance, this won't fit your taste then. It can be a challenge though ;)

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  9. I also hope you'll have more soon too! Like Anna, I'm not sure it's for me but it sounds interesting even if it could have been better too. Thanks for the discovery I really didn't know about this one.

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    1. You're most welcome. Better you know than taking a chance blindly :)

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  10. You have me curious and I love the sound of the heroine. Color me stupid but what does MYA mean? I tried Google and I couldn't find a suitable answer.

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    1. Hahaha! Finally something you don't know! MYA-Mature Young Adult. :)

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  11. Mature YA? I think?

    It looks interesting, has a comic book feel to it , it seems. I don't know about the lack of character development thought

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    1. Yup, that's it! Thanks for helping me out Lily!

      Maybe it's just trying to get traction? We'll see, I don't want to quit it just yet, one more book and I'll take it from there.

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  12. wooo, I love books like that! Adding it to my wishlist :)

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