Trigger Warning: Story includes rape mention(s).
Girls Burn Brighter tells the story of two extraordinary young women who go through one heartbreaking ordeal after another, but who are sure of one thing: their love, admiration and need for the other. Their humanity is decidedly bound together through sisterhood.
Set in India and the USA, it is more nuanced and complicated than the oft-written story of immigration from the ‘third world’ to the ‘developed world’. No matter where they find themselves, life is cruel to Savitha and Poornima. They occupy a world in which the value of women and girls hinge on the distorted and contemptuous ideas and proclivities of men.
The girl’s friendship is beautiful and awe-inspiring. For people with very little in the way of material wealth, and with so much stacked against them, they more than make up for it in kindness and warmth. Where the average person might have been broken by their circumstances, their bond keeps them hopeful and defies everything meant to keep them in their places.
Simultaneously dark, beautiful and devastating, Rao’s storytelling pulls at your soul in unimaginable ways. It pulls you in and releases you suddenly to pick up the fragments of your heart. The plot and pacing were excellent and it was hard to put down the book for any protracted period.
The only thing I didn’t love about Girls Burn Brighter was the ending. While it is beautiful and a happy ending, I personally wanted more. I have so many questions I want to be answered! But alas, not all questions are meant to be answered.
I would recommend this book to all and sundry; it is a story meant to be known in all the nooks and crannies of the world.
Girls Burn Brighter was reviewed by Rebel Women Lit Member Karen Lloyd
Thank you to the publcity team at Flatironbooks for sending us a copy in exchange for an honest review.
Preorder Girls Burn Brighter via Macmillan Books (release March 06, 2018)
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