A Review of J.M. Hackman’s “Burn”

Book Review of Burn by J.M. Hackman, Firebrand Chronicles

*Note: While this review does not reveal the ending, it does contain spoilers.*

The final book in The Firebrand Chronicles, Burn, reveals a darker side to our teenage hero, Brenna James, and delves deeper into the Jasper Territory’s history.

Brenna’s people have been forced to seek refuge in another land as Rune’s control now encompasses Lenneah. Brenna’s boyfriend, Baldwin, is a Life Shade. And Brenna’s lost her firebrand powers, an integral part of her being. As if all that weren’t enough, Brenna learns Rune is seeking a powerful object that could destroy their world and ensure his control over the Jasper Territory forever.

What’s a girl to do?

There’s much to love about Burn: fast pace, intrigue, conflicts, and evolving powers. Romantic complications add to the challenges as well: Baldwin is a Life Shade; Brenna is drinking; and external forces seek to divide them. In the midst of it, vulnerabilities are exposed and Brenna opens up to Baldwin about what it’s like to be ADHD.

Additionally, new insights into the Jasper Territory’s history bring the entire epic trilogy into focus. And all of these elements are intricately woven to create a storyline that’s richer than the first two books (which are great stories on their own).

Readers should be aware that Burn delves into teen drinking. Occasionally, Brenna drinks a substance like alcohol and displays a mild dependency. But Brenna’s drinking isn’t glorified, ignored, or graphically depicted. Along the way, people close to her warn her of the dangers. And, in the end, she faces consequences for her drinking and turns away from it.

Overall, Burn offers readers a satisfying conclusion to an epic and daring trilogy for teens.

Burn by J.M. Hackman is available from Amazon and other retailers.

Content Guide

Romance (low-medium)
A few passionate kisses and shirtless guys.

Violence (low)
Fights, fires, and battles where some characters die and others are injured, but nothing graphic.

Language (low)
Words like “shut up” and “scum”

Sensitive topics (medium)
Teenage drinking with a mild display of dependency. But the behavior isn’t glorified, the scenes aren’t descriptive, and the choice results in consequences.

More posts about The Firebrand Chronicles by J.M. Hackman (on this site).

Writing a Series by J.M. Hackman (guest post)
The Firebrand Chronicles Forged by J.M. Hackman (featured interview)
A Review of Flare 
Spark Unity Study 

About Burn

Life: 1. Brenna James: 0.

An AWOL talent, an enemy-occupied hometown, and a Life Shade boyfriend-Brenna James just wants something to go right. Although her family has been given sanctuary in Syeira, Brenna will never be safe as long as Rune is hunting down and killing Firebrands.

Can someone please wake her up already?

When a prophecy sends Brenna and Baldwin on a confusing quest, they aren’t sure where to begin. They must find the Caelestis Staff, a powerful object that both cuts and mends space itself. Rune wants it too, and he’ll use any lethal tactics necessary to obtain it.

Yeah, nightmare material right there.

A traveling oasis, plenty of man-eating mermaids, and one Skeleton King later, Brenna seriously doubts she has the edge she needs to confront Rune. When Brenna’s faced with the biggest test of her life, will she burn like the Firebrand she is? Or will she burn out?

About J.M. Hackman

J. M. Hackman loves thunderstorms, bookstores, and happy endings. She’s never met a reading nook she didn’t like and prefers soul talk to small talk. When she’s not writing, she spends time with her two munchkins and her handsome husband who supports her in this crazy profession. Her days are filled with writing stories, consuming massive quantities of dark chocolate, and looking for portals to other worlds. You can find her at www.jmhackman.com.

Or connect with her on InstagramFacebookTwitterPinterest, or Goodreads.

Published by K.A. Cummins

K.A. Cummins is an award-winning author and artist. Her publications include Havok Publishing, Rattle, Blue Mesa Review, and her middle-grade series, Snow Globe Travelers.

2 thoughts on “A Review of J.M. Hackman’s “Burn”

  1. Thanks so much, KaLyn! I’m glad you liked it, and I so appreciate the review!

    Enjoy your week! Blessings, Jill

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