Book Review: Bonfire by Krysten Ritter

Book Rating (out of 5):

3.5 stars for this one. I gotta give it up to Krysten Ritter. She is a talented writer. For a first novel, it’s very, very solid and I can see her next effort being even better.

I was pretty much taken in by the story right from the get go. We are on a ride with Abby who is returning to her hometown after a 10 year abscence. She’s now a environmental lawyer and the firm she works for is looking into complaints that the big firm in town is tainting the water supply and poisoning it’s residents. It’s a small, small town and she’s barely crossed the town line before her tortured, high school past starts creeping up to haunt her. It felt like a less twisted Sharp Objects meets Erin Brockovich. In the end, the depth of the conspiracy felt like a stretch, but regardless, I enjoyed the ride getting there.

What makes this a 3.5 instead of a solid 4 for me? It was really predictable and I found myself getting really annoyed with the protagonist, Abby, who, at times, seems like the dumbest smart girl that you’ll ever meet. Or maybe it’s less that she’s dumb and more that she couldn’t pull herself out of the muck and mire of her own baggage to see what was right in front of her face. Please forgive me the language, but seriously – again with these bitches???? I mean, how many times do I have to say it…

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At the end, I was getting really, really, really annoyed with her. She seemed so terribly naive at times that it was painful and I wanted to reach through the pages to give her a hard smack. And there was something that happened towards the beginning of the book that I kept expecting to come back and haunt her. But somehow that never materialized into anything and eventually, I was a just confused by why it was necessary. I mean, I guess it was just for her to jog loose some old memories, but even those memories were confusing. I wish that Ritter had either developed that a bit more clearly or eliminated it. In hindsight, I don’t think it was essential.

To say anymore would be to jump into spoiler territory so I’ll leave it at this – despite it’s flaws, it’s a solid, thrilling little mystery. I look forward to reading more books by Krysten Ritter.

Check out Bonfire when it’s released November 7, 2017.


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