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Flash Burnout Paperback – October 4, 2010
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Let's start with the good, I loved how each chapter started with something related to photography, be it from a manual or Blake's homework and the way that photography was used to move the story forward. I would have loved to have seen Blake's and Marissa's photographs. They sound beautiful.
I also loved seeing Blake try and balance having a girlfriend he adored and that adores him (Shannon) and a girl that is a friend that really needs him (Marissa). The feeling of being torn and trying to do what's right for everyone is explored wonderfully in this book.
Another thing I really liked was Blake's family, his open-minded parents and his older brother, Garrett. I actually liked Garret at times better than Blake and his storyline about his friend with benefits Cappie. Would have loved to have seen that explored more.
While I liked all of that I did have some problems that distracted and took away from the good things in the book. Right off the bat I noticed Blake's slang and sort of annoying sense of humor, stuff like talking to Houston in his head all the time etc. I could have done without those types of things. And another thing that became rather bothersome for me was the way that Blake talked about his girlfriend Shannon and her body and touching her body. Yes, I know boys have hormones and they think about that stuff, but it was just too much for me and it made me sort of dislike Blake during those passages.Read more ›
The novel begins with a photography assignment for fifteen-year-old Blake, just experiencing his first real romance. When Blake inadvertently snaps a picture of his friend Marissa's drug-addicted mother, he launches Marissa into a journey for which she desperately needs his support. That journey causes Blake to question what he thought he knew about love, sex, and friendship and takes readers on a wild ride of their own.
The voice in this book is really remarkable, and Madigan's rich characters with their hysterical dialogue reminded me of John Green at times. FLASH BURNOUT is a fantastic, fantastic debut!
There were a few times, however, that his voice sounded too teen-girl. Such as "Oh no she didn't!" That phrase is begging for a 'snap' at the end of it, and I don't know any teen boys who would do that. :) He also had a little too much insight at times (like, at the end with Marissa), which didn't fit his maturity level, character, or situation in life. Also, the end result of his photography felt like the story was being tied up with a bow.
So, for me (who isn't a teen anymore), those elements weakened the story. However, I can still see teens, both boys and girls, strongly relating to the characters and their situations. Especially since the writing is sharp, and the descriptions of the photographs are vivid and interesting.
This is definitely not for a younger audience, though. Sex is mentioned frequently, and there is an after-sex scene that might be too mature for kids younger than 13 or 14. The drug aspect of the story was done well, without graphic consequences, but it's also prevalent throughout the story.
Speaking of the mom, hoorah! Finally here's a great literate teen novel that features parents who are present and involved in their kids lives (at least in Blake's case). That alone is a refreshing change. Blake has a great relationship with his parents and they allow him to solve his own problems while always being nearby for support. You just don't see that much in YA literature. I think that will make this book more relatable to a wider variety of kids. I like the growth Blake goes through in this book. It has the ring of truth to it.
This is a great read that will appeal to both boys and girls. Because of the sexual situations, (Blake thinks about sex alot) I would recommend for teens 15 and up. Blake's parents have raised him with a more cavalier attitude towards sex than some parents of young readers would be comfortable with.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
While I loved this story I wasn't happy the way it ended it seemed more could be said that it ended with too many loose endsPublished 13 months ago by Lady Z
This had to have been self published. It rambles for months without getting to the point and when it does, packs little punch. Will never read another book by this author again.Published 18 months ago by Tyler
Love L.K.Madigan's voice. She's snappy, funny, and just held my attention for the whole ride! Love the main character's family! Very well done!Published 23 months ago by Tori Kelley, Ph.D.
On Goodreads, I have a shelf called “Good Books. . . Just not sure I Like.” This shelf was made for books like Flash Burnout. Read morePublished on June 25, 2014 by Stormy
I really liked this book and have been into photography since I was young but didn't really start expressing it until recently because I was afraid of what people would think. Read morePublished on February 25, 2013 by Amazon Customer
I originally got this book to read and share with my teenaged great niece but it was just over the top concerning some aspects of Blake's life and so it sits on my shelf until she... Read morePublished on December 18, 2012 by Amazon Customer
A bemusing exploration of the dynamics of a romantic relationship, "Flash Burnout" has characters that ingratiate themselves with the reader thoroughly, a plot that leaves one... Read morePublished on May 17, 2012 by Vivian
I kept checking the cover to make sure I was reading a teen novel. I was so immersed into the book with the characters simply leaping off the page. Read morePublished on October 27, 2011 by Sylvia M. Hubbard
WOW! That's the only word I can use to describe this book and it doesn't even begin to do it justice. I borrowed this book from a friend and it left me speechless. Read morePublished on August 5, 2011 by What's On the Bookshelf