Friday, December 1, 2017

Book Review - The Burning Girl

Claire Messud has another compelling read – The Burning Girl.  I really liked The Woman Upstairs, so when I saw she had a new book I got on the library waitlist. It was worthy being in a queue.

This is a coming of age book. Julia and Cassie have been friends forever, but the dynamics change in adolescence – friendship, goals, and actions. From the cover blurb – The Burning Girl is a complex examination of the stories we tell ourselves about youth and friendship, and straddles, expertly, childhood’s imaginary worlds and painful adult reality – crafting a true, immediate portrait of female adolescence.

The author captures the ups and downs of girls, the struggles and competition when boys enter the picture, and the issue of family. Julia’s family is solid and caring. Cassie’s changes with a new stepfather. I enjoyed this story and felt the pain and heartache of lost and found friendship, deep history and concern even when paths diverge. Claire Messud’s writing is very smooth and her characters and story flow will keep you interested. Thumbs up on The Burning Girl. 


  1. Great when a writer can capture that phase when things change away.

  2. Sounds interesting. I reckon "childhood’s imaginary worlds and painful adult reality" will be meeting head-on for me in April. A gal who was my childhood best friend is coming to visit me. She emailed to say she woke up in the middle of the night with the strong feeling that she had to go to Atlanta. Since I'm the only one she knows who lives here, she figured God was trying to tell her something. Weird thing is, ever since her husband died last year, I've been dreaming about her an awful lot, so we decided we shouldn't fight what the universe was trying to tell us... Should be interesting. We haven't seen each other in maybe twenty-five years or more.

    1. Wow - that should be interesting. Awkward at first, but enough old history to chat. Plus new found stuff. I'll be curious to hear how it goes in the spring. Meanwhile, have a good weekend

  3. Nice. This one sounds relevant and thoughtful.

    Happy December, and have a great week, Joanne.

  4. Sounds like one I'd like. Nicely written review.