Nothing Left to Burn by Heather Ezell

Nothing Left to Burn

Heather Ezell

With its dark suburban setting and fast-paced, riveting plot, Nothing Left to Burn is the ultimate page-turner in the vein of Big Little Lies and The Husband's Secret, but with an emotional, relatable teen voice. 

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The autumn morning after sixteen-year-old Audrey Harper loses her virginity, she wakes to a loud, persistent knocking at her front door. Waiting for her are two firemen, there to let her know that the moment she's been dreading has arrived: the enormous wildfire sweeping through Orange County, California, is now dangerously close to her idyllic gated community of Coto de Caza, and it's time to evacuate.

Over the course of the next twenty-four hours, as Audrey wrestles with the possibility of losing her family home, she also recalls her early, easy summer days with Brooks, the charming, passionate, but troubled volunteer firefighter who enchants Audrey--and who is just as enthralled by her. But as secrets from Brooks's dark past come to light, Audrey can't help but wonder if there's danger in the pull she feels--both toward this boy, and toward the fire burning in the distance.


Advance Galley Reviews

This book was the perfect summer read for me. It was fast paced, not much depth, enough romance and thrill to keep me turning the pages and I could put it down and forget about it. Ok, so that last thing isn't so great. This is a YA thriller. It completely meets that expectation. The romance is definitely 'first love'. The main character, Audrey, has a lot going on, meaning family drama, friend drama, body issues. I enjoyed the insight into wildfires. I grasped immediately the lies and mental health issues that Brooks was dealing with. Again, it's a YA thriller. I would agree with most of the other reviewers, 3 out of 5 stars.

I appreciated certain things about this YA thriller but ultimately it fell flat for me. The setting of the Southern California wildfires was definitely unique and added the overwhelming feeling of dread and foreboding to the story. The story itself was interesting with unpredictable twists. However, at times the characters felt unbelievable and the writing felt somewhat juvenile. I found it hard to become immersed in the story due to this. I feel it could have been better.

I thought that this book was okay. It was one of those stories that I liked but didn't love and will ultimately find rather forgettable. I am really not sure what caused me to add this one to my reading list since the cover does nothing for me and the synopsis is only mildly appealing. I did find this book to be a fairly quick read and I was entertained but it was never a book that was hard to set aside. This book jumped around in time quite a bit. About half of the book occurs on the day the fire comes so close to Audrey's home that she is evacuated. The rest of the book is set prior to that day. The present day events are told in a chronological manner but the flashes to the past do jump around just a bit with some happening closer to the fire and others at different times in Audrey's relationship with Brooks. I never really connected with any of the characters. Audrey often did things that didn't make sense to me. I kind of wanted to sit her down and give her a good mom talk since she seemed to be on a rather destructive path. Brooks was a character that I never trusted and his relationship with Audrey was rather unhealthy. I did like the fact that the story was centered around a fire. I thought that it was a really original setting and some of the descriptions of the fire were truly frightening. I did find some parts of the story to be rather predictable but I wanted to keep reading to see if things would actually work out the way I thought they would. I do have to say that I was really disappointed by the way the book ended. I really felt like the book just kind of stopped instead offering some kind of resolution. I do think that a lot of readers will like this one a lot more than I did. This was as story that kept me turning pages. I would not hesitate to read future books by this debut author. I received a digital review copy of this book from Penguin Publishing Group - Razorbill via First to Read.

I'm a little torn on this book. I did enjoy the story. It was interesting to get a peek into Audrey's life and see the way the wildfire was affecting her. The relationship with Brooks was questionable... he was clearly troubled as the synopsis states. The story does jump back and forth between the events leading up to "now" and the current timeline of being evacuated due to the wildfire. It was interesting to get to see both sides of the story, but at times parts just dragged and I wished it would jump back to the other timeline. And I was disappointed with the ending. The book dragged so much at times and then the ending felt very rushed and didn't give much closure at all. I'd give this book 3 stars out of 5. I would have liked a little more from it, but overall it was pretty interesting.

Nothing left to burn is a newly released YA novel. I was really excited to read this book because I’ve heard good things about this novel and it turned out to be true. I found this story to be unique and different from other YA novels which turned out to be a good thing. I really just enjoyed this book from the overall story, to the characters and the writing. From beginning to end this good story was unfolding and I just couldn’t put it down. Really good story and I can’t wait read more from this author. Thank to First to Read for giving me an e-arc to read and review.

I really gave this the old college try but it was very hard to go from past to present and I got bored. then my download expired. sorry

An intense and enthralling coming of age story that is uniquely told and gripping. Audrey has come a long way in her relationship with her boyfriend Brooks, a character with a haunting past and an obsession with fire. It is hard to believe that this beautifully written and constructed novel is a debut. The pace is impressive as it splits the story into two timelines, going back to when Audrey first met Brooks to the current situation where the an out of control fire in the forests of California. Wildfires are an event that the reader can not only imagine perfectly but an event that the readers can empathize with because wildfires happen all too often on the news. Moreover, on that note, the writer notes the tension and the loss the character experiences. So much is happening all at once, and the story captures that. But not only that, the fire reflects Audrey’s relationship with Brooks. Audrey is a seemingly lost character, lost in the sense that she does not know what she loves in life, doesn’t know what she wants in her life. Moreover, the fire is the perfect image for that situation. Fire is both beautiful and deadly at the same time. It has such vibrancy but is capable of such destruction, much like her relationship with Brooks. In the beginning, her relationship with Brooks is bright and burning, he makes her think about what she wants to do with her life, and she admires that about him, it is what draws them together, this need for comfort and wholesomeness. Together they both feel as if their lives are whole. However, that is all a façade, and Ezell unravels that bright façade, burning through it, burning through the lies and half-truths that have begun to define their relationship. The defining qualities of the relationship are why the pace of the story is so important and while the back and forth works so amazingly with this novel. It flows so well, keeping the pace of the story moving, never losing momentum and thus never losing the reader. The uneasiness of this relationship, which becomes very toxic and possessive, ultimately draws the reader into the story. Brooks is not an unlikable character per se, but he sparks uneasiness. Even before the Audrey realizes something is off about him, the reader can sense it. That is what is so beautiful about the writing, the structure and word choice, the action surrounding the dialogue creates such wonder at times, but also an awareness that this relationship is doomed. Audrey’s character development is also amazingly structured. The reader can see her struggle to find herself in this world and come to peace with many of the decisions she has made in her life, her pain and her desires that seem to confuse her, taking away her sense of identity that she longs to find. Her narrative is incredibly relatable to the character because, at one point or another, everyone feels lost, especially in high school and college where the idea of finding one’s self is so pressed upon. However, through the narrative and the flashbacks, Audrey’s sense of identity grows, her character develops, and it is incredible to see it unfold between the pages. As a debut novel, it is incredible. The story flows perfectly within it is fast pace, keeping the reader gripped to the pages. (????? | A)

This book was twisty and weird, but definitely in a good way. While I did feel the story was a bit predictable, I enjoyed it and was somewhat surprised at some of the the plot points. Right off the bat I knew that Brooks was a psychopath. Something about his and Audrey's interactions during the fire and even with their backstory...you could just tell something was off about him. I thought he was possessive and over-confident. I was immediately not a fan. I liked Audrey a lot. She seemed like your normal, run-of-the-mill girl. She had struggles and tried to hide them so as not to worry her family. They had already suffered and lived through a tragedy, so she wants to spare them from her misery. As the story unfolds and the fire burns, we met a nice myriad of different characters. Aubrey has an interesting group of friends. She's lost touch with them because of her relationship with Brooks, but she finds her way back to them in a sense. I loved reading about Audrey's growth and how she managed to really grow up within the pages. She had some tough decisions to make for a teenager, but she handled them with grace. The only thing I would have liked would have been some closure with Brooks.

A coming of age book that has great potential but falls flat. Very predictable ending but the breakdown of Audrey's anxiety and self doubt are very real and well written. Other than Audrey's storyline there wasn't much else in the book, no entertaining side stories to go through while solving the bigger issues... This was an okay first debut, would be interested to read another book by this author because she seems to have great potential.

Southern California fire season is a phenomenon that has to be experienced to understand and articulate as Heather Ezell has. I found the novel's pacing exciting and I liked the deft weaving of dual timelines: one following the 24 hours after Audrey is evacuated from her home due to imminent threat of wildfire; the second in the three months leading up to the fire. I wanted to like this book. It deals with topics and settings with which I am very familiar. I even guessed that the main character Audrey was referring to Colorado College when she mentions a small school she's considering after graduation from high school. I felt as if the author knew of what she wrote intimately. But I disliked the characters -- all of them. I am a bit of a YA addict, especially those YA novels (fantasy or reality-based) that cross over and appeal to adults as well as teens. This is not one of those. The main character is so over-the-top dramatic and angsty. I feel as if this YA is pretty strictly YA, no crossover appeal for me. And don't even get me started on how the cover completely misses the mark. A pool? So irrelevant. The main character won't even wear a bathing suit.

This book didn't do it for me. I liked and disliked the cover first of all. I liked the contrast of the water and fire and the colors but I also didn't get it. No one swims in a pool while a fire is raging, no one jumps in a pool to save themselves, so what's the point of it? I didn't like any of the characters. Audrey had a multitude of insecurity and anxiety issues which did feel very real and was good to see in a YA book. Some of her struggles I could see myself in. I haaaaated Brooks. I hated their relationship. I also didn't like the ending because it wasn't really an ending. Just sort of a, okay I'll stop writing here.

This is a decently entertaining young adult novel. I didn't necessarily enjoy this book however I am not the audience for it. I don't think it is nuanced enough so the execution is spotty, however I feel that a young adult or an adult who likes YA would enjoy this. It touches upon issues of mental health and toxic relationships and I found Brooks to be an interesting character. This is a page-turner though by the last 1/3 of the novel I did skim a bit and Audrey tried my nerves. Though I'm not a huge fan, I'm glad I had an opportunity to read this.

This book was enrapturing. With the present and past perspectives being explored it is easy to get a wholistic idea of who Audrey is as a person and her relationships with her family, Grace and Brooks. This book showed her inner anxiety and mental struggles so well, that I was sucked into her plight especially as the story continues to unfold in time with the fire. The depiction of an emotionally abusive partner really made this book a stand out, as so often it takes reading a situation to grasp the existence of such a situation. I give this book a 4 star rating and will watch eagerly for the authors sophomore novel.

Nothing Left To Burn was probably the most real book I've read in a long time. It touched on topics such as unhealthy relationships and mental illness in a way that felt so personal. Heather's writing is so beautifully descriptive. I actually imagined I was there with our MC in Coto de Caza smelling the smoke, seeing all of the ash and feeling the powerful Santa Ana winds. As I was reading, from an outsider's perspective, I wanted to tell Audrey to get it together, but if I put myself in her shoes, I know I would have the same internal struggles that she dealt with since meeting Brooks. It's not so easy when you look at it that way. I really enjoyed experiencing Audrey's other relationships as well, such as the ones with her sister and Grace. Overall, a top notch debut novel from Heather! I cannot wait to see what she has in store for us in the future!

Wow this was an intense book. Between the wildfire creeping ever closer, Brooks' lies and scary behavior that unfolds throughout the story, and the mystery of what exactly happened with Audrey and what she's hiding, this kept me on the edge of my seat the entire time I was reading it. Well-written, atmospheric, suspenseful. Well done.

Nothing Left to Burn was an emotional thrill ride from start to finish. Audrey was a relatable narrator; I connected with her on many different levels. This story of dealing with abusive relationships, self-doubt, anxiety, and the consequences of your own actions really pulled me in. I've never lived through a wildfire, but reading such a realistic portrayal of one was terrifying enough. This is definitely worth the read.

I really enjoyed this book. I am an adult who loves YA.

Wow! I wasn't quite sure what I was expecting from this debut from Heather Ezell but man it certainly delivered. I devoured this in one sitting and that doesn't happen very often, I sat down before dinner to start it and then read straight through for almost four hours wowza. Living in the southwest I'm no stranger to wildfires or bright red and orange sunsets caused by the burn hanging in the air. I can somehow still taste the smoke and ash in the air and am still wound up in the feelings of frantic uncertainty this book left me with. I know it's getting more popular these days but I loved that a bit of the family relationships were explored not just the romance and I could really relate to certain aspects of Audrey's life, especially having a younger sibling that's got passion to give more so than I could ever fathom of myself. The contrast of the back drop of such an unpredictable situation mixed with such a seemingly believable story about a high school girl just kinda livin' life really worked for me. And when I actually think about it isn't that what life is? We're all just out here living and then these crazy things happen and pick up speed and burn so much quicker than we'd ever want them to. I did wish the ending was a bit more concrete and not so vague but overall this one really held my attention and I can't wait to read what Heather releases next.

A very unique story and one that kept me intrigued throughout. Having lived through a wildfire evacuation I related so much to that part of the book and I also enjoyed the alternating timelines. Great read.

A story of first love with 16 year old Audrey, and her mysterious boyfriend, Brooks. He is a volunteer fire-fighter and helps evacuate her neighborhood as a wildfire gets out of control. During the next 24 hours, Audrey will face some difficult situations and face some dangers that she never expected. I was intrigued with the first half of the novel and really enjoyed the growing tension, but the back story of Audrey and Brook and the alternating timeline had me losing interest. I think a younger age group would relate to the love story more than I did. The ending was predictable (for me), but I did enjoy how the author tied everything together. I would rate this a 3.5 stars.

The book was a page-turner for me, but I don't think I understood what the author was trying to do by draw together the main character losing her virginity & the fire. Just trying to demonstrate the intensity of the relationship, and being a teenager? The ending felt a bit unsatisfying to me too...it didn't feel like there was a clear resolution, although maybe that was the point?

This book is fast paced, incredibly readable and exciting. Audrey is a great teenage protagonist with inner struggles over her relationship. The danger and emotion pulled me through the story. I wanted to know the end from the very beginning.

This is a dark little book with twists, turns, and, at it's core, a lot of heart. Audrey is the type of character you root for no matter what she does. She has a good head on her shoulders and I found her, as well as the darkly intoxicating atmosphere of the novel, one of the best parts about this book. The story is told in alternating chapters that help build Audrey and her relationships with her family, friends, and Brooks, the new boy, into full realized interactions and characters, This isn't a quick read, but while it is somewhat dark I wouldn't call it serious. It has its moments, but at it's core it a story about a girl, the twists her life takes, the the people who help her through it while understanding herself along the way.

This was such a unique book in regards to how the story unfolded. I feel the writing style and the flashbacks really worked for this story. I liked that the characters were not perfect and although some of them were quite aggravating each character was memorable. Overall I'd recommend it.

I really enjoyed how the story was set up in flashbacks, it went from the moment she was woken up to be evacuated, until the final outcome of the book. I felt like I was along for a very turbulent ride the whole time, with everything going on as the fire got closer, to everything that led up to Audrey’s choices. I didn’t feel like I was missing out on any parts. I thought this also helped portray Audrey’s internal struggles in a way that was easy to comprehend. I thought Audrey was a very brave and honest character. She had some tough decisions to make about romance, friendship and life in general. With all that was going on I felt like she kept her head on her shoulders. This part where Audrey is explaining herself really resonated with me. “Me, obsessive, one-track mind, all-or-nothing attitude” Like Audrey I did ballet, and abruptly walked away, though I was a bit older, a senior in high school. This part kept coming up and I felt as though I knew a lot of what she was feeling about that particular subject. For some reason I kept feeling like I was reading something by Gayle Foreman, who I absolutely adore. I think it had to do with the way the story flowed, and how it hit you in the feels. I highly enjoyed this whole book, and kept wanting more. I can’t wait to see what comes next from this author, she has quickly become an auto-buy author for me.

Thank for First to Read for the opportunity to read this novel. I enjoyed the mysterious writing and storyline. It definitely left me in suspense and I believe it wrapped up nicely. It was a fun read and it ventured outside my bubble of reading the same ol’same ol’. I had to appreciate it for its uniqueness. Would I have read it without the opportunity? Probably not, but I am glad I did.

I really enjoyed the way that this book was written. The story itself isn't overwhelming great, but the way it was written brought it to a whole other level. I have friends that live in California, that have been evacuated from their homes, I felt their fears and struggles come through. Audrey herself was really boring character, but that was the point. She became whatever it was that she was "finding". First it was ballet to keep her sister happy, then it was fire. I think she was a relate-able character for those struggling to place themselves and know who they are. Overall an entertaining read that keeps you moving right through the story!

Heather Ezell’s Nothing Left to Burn is a captivating debut novel that spoke to me on many levels. On one level, it’s a compelling story about growing up, falling in love, family, and the lengths that we’ll go to in order to protect those we love. In addition to being a coming of age story, however, it’s a suspenseful tale about a community fighting wildfires that threaten to destroy their homes and lives. The novel follows the story of sixteen-year-old Audrey Harper and opens with her reflecting on the fact that she lost her virginity the prior evening. Her thoughts are interrupted by firefighters pounding on her door. The firefighters inform her that the wildfires they’ve been monitoring are now dangerously close and Audrey’s entire neighborhood is therefore under mandatory evacuation. Audrey’s parents and sister are out of town so it’s up to Audrey to gather up any precious belongings and get them out of the house in the twenty minute window she has been given. Pushing her thoughts about the prior evening aside, Audrey rises to the occasion, packs her family’s belongings, and heads for safety. While she is waiting for her family to join her, Audrey spends much of the next 24 hours worrying about how she may lose her family home. The current dangerous situation also has her thinking back to happier, more carefree times such as the previous summer when she first met and fell in love with her boyfriend, Brooks. As she relives some of the memories of their budding relationship, however, she is also forced to recall that not all of their times together were great and that there’s more to Brooks than meets the eye, and not necessarily in a good way. He has a dark past that is slowly revealed to Audrey over time, and even though she loves him and wants to protect him, she fears she may be in over her head and realizes she has to make some hard choices. Audrey is my kind of main character. She’s not perfect by any means and doesn’t always make the best choices, but her heart is always in the right place and she will clearly go to the mat for those that she loves. Her devotion to her younger sister Maya is especially touching as we see when after she evacuates, Audrey learns from a friend that Maya was secretly keeping a kitten stashed in her bedroom closet. Horrified by how distraught Maya would be if her kitten were to die in a fire, Audrey heads back into the danger zone to try to retrieve Maya’s pet. The idea that she would possibly risk her own life for her sister’s happiness was just so touching. It was very easy to become invested in Audrey and her well being after that, and I was especially concerned for her well being as she reflected on her relationship with Brooks – how wonderful it had begun and then how increasingly troubled and dark it became as Audrey learned more and more about Brooks’ past. Ezell did a beautiful job of portraying not just the budding romance but also the many internal conflicts raging in Audrey’s mind as she thinks about the dark secrets she has learned about Brooks. There’s a lot going on in Audrey’s head and Ezell really captures that complexity and makes the character leap off the page. Aside from Audrey, I was also a big fan of how the book is structured. The story is presented to us from Audrey’s perspective in chapters that alternate between the present and the past. The present chapters focus on the life-threatening wildfires and all that is happening regarding evacuation and fire containment efforts, while the other chapters focus on Audrey’s backstory and some internal conflicts that she is clearly experiencing regarding her new boyfriend. As the narrative flips back and forth between past and present, we are slowly fed key details that reveal what is causing Audrey so much distress and how it relates to the events of the present. The author does a brilliant job creating suspense by telling the story this way and I loved watching everything unfold. Finally, I was captivated by the overall atmosphere of the novel. It’s a bit dark and dangerous, both in terms of Audrey’s thoughts regarding Brooks and in terms of the threatening wildfires that are looming all around Audrey’s community. Ezell really made me feel like I was right there in the middle of the action and danger, which made it a real page turner for me as I waited with bated breath to see what would happen. My biggest issue with Nothing Left to Burn was that I found a couple of the plot twists to be predictable. I think I would have enjoyed the story much more if I hadn’t guessed those so early on. Even though I did predict a couple of the plot twists, I still really enjoyed reading this book. Between the story of Audrey and Brooks and the tense story of the encroaching wildfires, Nothing Left to Burn is an engrossing story that kept me thoroughly engaged from start to finish.

Whoa. I’m just... That completely threw me off and I mean that as a compliment. I thought I knew exactly where this story was going, but boy was I wrong. First of all, I absolutely LOVED THE WAY THIS WAS WRITTEN. Totally having a nerd moment over here because I thought the writing style was AMAZING and the formatting GENIUS. When looking at the story as a whole, it’s fairly unremarkable and straight forward, but Ezell did a killer job of making it exciting and dynamic. I LOVED how she broke it up into two different timelines and alternated for each chapter. It made the story ten times more interesting and I couldn’t put it down. This also hit me on several different personal levels. I was born in California, lived in Los Angeles for three years after college graduation, and most of my extended family resides there. The setting and landscape was completely familiar to me in a déjà vu kind of way. Wild fires have been a real threat to some of my family in the past, so that definitely struck a chord. Plus, we’ve all been through one of those terrible life-altering moments. The kind that changes the essence of who you are. Watching Audrey navigate her own life-altering moment was completely relatable and my heart ached for her. The only sort-of negative comment I have is that I wish Audrey’s character had been a little more interesting and not so bland. To be fair, that IS one of the things she struggles with. This book is all about Audrey finding her “thing” and discovering who she is as a person. But next to her colorful sister and best friend, she seemed so grey and boring. It did make the story more relatable in that I could easily project myself onto her, but I wish there had just been a little more individuality there somehow. Overall though, I thought this was such a good read and I recommend it to everyone. Two thumbs way up! Five stars!!

This story is as raw as scraped fingers, everything hurts while reading. You can't help feel bad for Audrey, drawn into a relationship with Brooks who has psychological scarring from his brothers death. She hides her own depression from her family, to avoid focus on herself, but towards her own beloved sister. Her decisions are dangerous, but it is hard to know where the true danger lies,the fire, her boyfriend, or herself. This was definitely an interesting story.

Nothing Left to Burn by Heather Ezell is like speeding toward a disaster and knowing something awful is about to happen. From the moment you meet him, you realize something is off with Brooks. His downward spiral is obvious, but you still can't quite pinpoint what's going on, neither can Audrey, until she goes down with him. Audrey's relationships, both good and bad, make her flawed and very real. In the end, nothing is quite what it seems, and you are left to decide for yourself what happened. Great debut novel! I will read more from Heather Ezell.

This book was a little bit disappointing for me. I didn't think Brooks was a very believable or appealing character, and I felt annoyed with Audrey by the end. The story does keep you turning the pages though.

The title of this great book makes you wonder what it is about. The way it started, was not what i expected and neither was the ending. You think it is about wildfires and nothing more but there is so much happening. This book kept me interested and held me till the very end. Really great story and characters!

From the very beginning, this book sucked me in and didn't let go until the end. While I do wish the ending was wrapped up a little better, as a whole I thought the book was very good.

I am a child of Southern California and the wildfires that consume everything were such a huge part of my life growing up. There were plenty of times that we received notices to be prepared to evacuate, school closed due to poor air quality, and people walking around with face masks as ash rained down. When I saw that this book was about a California fire, I was interested to see how the book would play out. And oh my geez, this was not at all what I expected this book to be when I started, and I really mean that in the best way possible. The author nailed the setting perfectly, the story was able to bring to life the fire, the desperation, the loss. This was such a crazy, emotional ride and where I started with these characters is not how we ended. This is very much a character driven story, where almost no action happens, but really it was introspective as to how the characters developed, what pushed them into certain situations, and what kind of outcome do they have left to them. I feel like I know Audrey, every damaged, hurt part of of her. And when I say damaged, I am being serious. This girl is an emotional mess, but at the same time I could 100% relate to her, empathize with her, and I understood how she got to be in this place. I don't blame her for her feelings, she was lost and thought she had been found, but instead she found herself in a dangerous, passionate, world full of lies she could not see through. I rooted for her at the end of the book, so happy at the revelations she admitted to as well as the truths she fought for. And her love towards her sister and best friend were amazing, showing all the kinds of relationships a person needs to be healthy. I loved the format of the book, with lots of short chapters, ranging from just a paragraph to four or five pages. If you want to hook me on a story this is the best way to do it- I always think just one more and next thing I know I am a 100 pages further and it's an hour later.? I love this writing format, to me it makes a book more approachable and easy to escape into, be it briefly or for hours. Also, the story takes place over 24 hours, but the current actions are alternated with the memories that Audrey has had over the past few months pertaining to her relationship with Brooks, filling in the dynamic between their relationship status and how we all got this point. ?This is the authors debut book and I could not be more impressed with the crazy ride that I was taken on. ?I sped through the pages and was shocked by the twists provided. This is not rainbows and sunshine, but hurt, depression and all the feels. I highly recommend this read for anyone looking for an emotional, realistic YA read to get sucked into. I look forward for more from this author.

Heather Ezell’s stunning debut novel, Nothing Left To Burn, is a fiery coming of age story that will have you on the edge of your seat from start to finish. It’s a raw, complex story about love, grief, forgiveness, and everything in between. Although I read the synopsis of this book before diving in, I still wasn’t quite sure what to expect, and I found myself completely taken by surprise by many of the events that took place throughout the story. This book is filled with intrigue and suspense from the very first page. I found it to be so compelling that I had a hard time putting it down, and even snuck in reading snippets of it at work every chance I got. This book has all of the makings of a compelling psychological read. It’s dark and complicated and is packed full of twists and turns. It’s emotional and full of depth, and will wreak havoc on your emotions and mess with your mind. This is a story that blurs the lines between what is right and what is wrong, and will make you ponder the choices that people make. At the beginning of the book, we are introduced to sixteen year old Audrey Harper, who is having one hell of a morning. Not only did she lose her virginity the previous night, but she is awakened to a fireman knocking at her door, telling her that the community in which she lives is being evacuated due to an oncoming wildfire. This story is told in an alternating timeline, as it jumps back and forth between the present, in which Audrey is dealing with being evacuated from her home due to the fire and a whole slew of other things, and then goes back to the past, in which we learn about her relationship with Brooks, the boy she lost her virginity to. Brooks is mysterious and shady and I was eagerly turning the pages in anticipation after his introduction, as I wanted to learn more about him and his relationship with Autumn in the chapters that flashed back to the past. Audrey’s inner turmoil, combined with her complicated relationship with Brooks and the fire raging in the background, made for such an entertaining, unputdownable read. I am hesitant to say anything more in this review, as I feel that going into this book blind makes for the best reading experience possible when it comes to this kind of story. This book was one hell of an impressive debut, and I will definitely be checking out more of Heather Ezell’s work in the future!

I really wanted to like this book, but sadly it fell completely flat for me. The plot was repetitive and I actually ended up disliking Aubrey for not having a spine. Brooks was not someone I could ever imagine someone wanting. He was damaged and it was extremely obvious that he had issues.

I had high hopes for this book. I had a hard ti.e with the main character and completely dislike Brooks. There was no growth or anything, just showed how much you can get stuck in a bad unhealthy relationship. Not a book I will v e recommending.

I was really into this book! It kept me hooked and interested throughout the duration of the story up until the last page. Even though I kind of expected some of the twists and turns, it really didn't take away my enjoyment of reading the story. This is a great YA novel and works really well as a beach read (which is how I read it!). I actually learned a lot about controlling wildfires and how they impact California, which is something I didn't know much about before this book. Thank you for the opportunity to read this story!

3 Stars. Nothing Left to Burn is a contemporary dramatic story about a girl dealing with a dangerous wildfire and an unhealthy relationship with her boyfriend. Taking place present day in Coto de Caza of Orange Country, California and told in first person by Audrey. The story alternatives between an October Sunday, the days before, and the previous summer. After a drunken party on Saturday night, Audrey is woken up at 5 am Sunday morning and is told that the wildfire, which has been growing since Thursday, is very close to her neighborhood and that everyone needs to evacuate. Her father is on a business trip and her mother and sister, Maya, are at an audition for a dance academy, leaving Audrey to pack up the family mementos and important items alone. Audrey is upset about the fire being so close, but also about trouble with her boyfriend, Brooks. In June, Audrey met Brooks, who had recently moved to the area, they fell in love within a couple of weeks, and have been together since. For the summer, Audrey made Brooks the center of her world. Brooks swept Audrey off her feet by telling her stories of his life in Washington, trees, training to be a firefighter, and of his brother, Cameron. The week before, Audrey learned that Brooks’ stories were not true and that he has been lying to her. When Audrey attempted to get Brooks to tell her the truth, he got upset and acted out, creating a bigger problem. At the party on Saturday, Audrey tried to pretend Brooks was the guy she fell in love with over the summer, not the lying and resentful guy he has become, but that ended up with her leaving the party alone. On Sunday, she needs to talk to him, but since Brooks is a volunteer firefighter, he will be out fighting the dangerous wildfire. Audrey has her best friend Grace and Grace’s older brother, Hayden, to help her handle all the troubles and stress the day brings. As the wildfire engulfs Coto de Caza, Audrey cannot wait until the fire is stopped, she needs to confront Brooks about everything. The story has a choppy pace, great characters and well-described settings. The chapters alternate between the hours after the evacuation on Sunday, the summer before, and few days before the wildfire grew. The alternating chapters can get confusing and hard to follow. The summer chapters about how Audrey’s and Brooks’ relationship started, slowed the story up as the chapters about the hours following the evacuation and what happened in the days before were more interesting. Audrey is a realistic teenager, she is shy, uncomfortable with her body, and she is trying to figure out who she is. For so long, Audrey identified with being the ballet dancer that made her sick sister happy and once Maya was better, Audrey was not sure of herself. Maya is funny, sweet and a caring sister to Audrey. Grace is bold, bossy, and a great friend to Audrey. Hayden is kind, supportive, and a loyal friend to Audrey. Brooks is self-centered, manipulative, and a liar with no redeeming qualities. The relationship between Brooks and Audrey was toxic and mentally abusive. Brooks kept Audrey from friends during the summer, he lied to her about almost everything, and he acted out anytime Audrey said something he did not like. The settings of Coto de Caza, the surrounding forest, and being by a wildfire are well written, making you feel like you are there. The story is not a romance and while Audrey reflects on losing her virginity on Saturday night, the story has no descriptive sex scenes. Except for burning cats being discussed, the story does not have violent scenes. The story needed an epilogue, because the ending is left open, not really resolving all the conflicts. While very eye-catching, the cover does not fit with the story because Audrey was uncomfortable in a swimsuit and never used the pool. Despite the open ending, I enjoyed the book and may check out others by the author. Fans of Pasadena, Fragments of the Lost, and We Were Liars might like this book.

I read the first 90 pages of this book in one sitting, but after that I had a difficult time picking it back up again. It didn't grab my attention enough to KEEP me reading. It was a little easier to continue reading because the chapters were so short. Maybe it was hitting too close to home, with the emotional turmoil and the natural disasters. I do plan on obtaining this book for my HS library.

I received a copy from Penguin First to Read. I went into this book not really knowing anything about it. It flagged my attention because I remembered if from my TBR list. I wasn’t expecting such an emotional gut-wrencher. It starts with teenager Audrey wakened by firemen knocking on her door and some ungodly hour of the morning informing her of mandatory evacuation due to a raging wildfire. Audrey lives in Orange County, California. Her dad is out of town on a business trip and her mom and younger sister Maya have gone somewhere (I can’t remember where) for some really exclusive ballet audition for Maya. Audrey stayed home and went to a party the night before. It’s clear something happened there and she may be a tad hungover. Naturally she’s completely freaked out and running around trying to figure out what to save, to get hold of her dad. She can’t bear the thought of freaking out her younger sister before her big audition. Also extremely worried over her boyfriend Brooks who is a volunteer firefighter. What follows is an emotional roller coaster as Audrey comes to terms with the raging fire and how it’s effecting the people in her life. Also with flashback chapters on how she met Brooks and how their relationship developed. It’s excellently written and the emotion pours out of the characters. Audrey comes across as a bit of a shy loner, with one best friend Grace. She doesn’t seem to get out much and feels a little left behind since Grace got a girlfriend, Quinn. Audrey works with Grace’s older brother Hayden on some AP projects for a class they’re in together. They’re friendly but you also get an impression something happened there as well that Audrey’s trying to avoid dealing with. She meets Brooks at a party and they strike an immediate connection. He’s a loner as well, there’s gossip about him Audrey’s heard throughout the school grapevine but Brooks is nice and she doesn’t want to listen to rumours. Especially since they seem to be getting on so well. They start hanging out more and more and develop a deeper relationship going from friendship to something more romantic. Audrey misses some red flags when Brooks’s behaviour starts changing. He’s got a complex past, his beloved brother died, he’s struggling to deal with it. Understandable. He can get her to talk, but doesn’t always seem to divulge much information about himself and gets annoyed and angry when asked about it. That should raise a few questions on its own. He doesn’t seem to like Audrey hanging out with her friends. He makes a scene about it when her friends show up at a birthday celebration for Audrey. He also seems kind of pushy about sex as well, especially since Audrey’s made it clear she wants to wait until she feels ready. Yet at the same time he can be very romantic as well. The chapters switch between what is happening the day of the evacuation and what happened over the summer leading to that point. As Audrey gets closer to Brooks she starts ignoring her own friends, and there’s big questions about what happened to Brooks’s deceased brother. Audrey gets some pretty shocking information. Yet she still can’t seem to think of much else. There’s also a really great family dynamic as well, Audrey and her sister are really close and their relationship with their parents is decently described as well. The parents are involved without being overbearing and not pushed to the background. There was a surprising twist in regards to the wildfire as well. Beautifully written and really emotional as well, this was a quick read but a very good one. Definitely an author I would read again.

Nothing Left to Burn has been high on my wish list ever since I first heard about it, and as the buzz continued to build over these last few months my excitement did as well. I couldn't wait to get my hands on a copy! Now that I've read it I can definitely say it was well worth the wait. Nothing Left to Burn is fiery and enthralling...the kind of book that calls to be read in one sitting. It's about the secrets a person keeps and the lies they tell themselves to protect the ones they love. It's about falling in love - so hopelessly in love - that they begin to loose parts of themselves along the way. It's about growing up and taking responsibility, finding strength at the most unexpected times. Basically, it's the kind of YA contemporary that reminds me just how much I love YA contemporary. Nothing Left to Burn is set over a twenty-four hour period. At first I was worried about this characteristic. I wondered if the book would feel complete, if the story lines as well as the characters would be fleshed out. As per usual, however, my worrying was for nothing. Heather does an excellent job of using the twenty-four period to her advantage. I loved the quick nature of the book. The chapters were fast paced and to the point; however, they never felt incomplete. I was always satisfied with what I received. I also loved that she included flashbacks. It helped to drum up intrigue as well as suspense, especially when the hinted at event was broken up into several parts. Nothing Left to Burn is told through Audrey's perspective. I found Audrey to be an interesting main character. I can't say I always loved her or fully stood behind her choices, but there was something about her that made her story so completely compelling. I wanted to know more about her. I wanted to know why she loved Brooks, why she seemed to be keeping her friends and family at such a distance, why she felt so guilty, and what exactly happened between her and her best friend's brother. I also loved how real she felt. She wasn't perfect. She was actually far from it, but over the course of the book, she aims to become a better person, to tell the truth, to take responsibility, and I admired that about her. I could even see parts of my high school self in her, and I feel that many others will be able to relate to her as well, especially when it comes to her toxic relationship with Brooks. Talking about Brooks, he definitely wasn't the most likable love interest. There wasn't anything swoony about him, and I could never quite see the appeal to him even in his and Audrey's happy days. He was broody and dark, and the more I got to know him, the more I wanted Audrey to run. Like with Audrey, however, I was curious to learn more about him, and I will say I appreciated the overall role he played. It offered up a lot of interesting twists as well as introspections. Nothing Left to Burn is a slow-burn read. It takes a while to get to the action, or the meat of the novel, but it was so worth it in my opinion. I loved getting to know the characters first, of really getting a feel for the California setting...Heather just did such a great job of building everything up. I also appreciated the focus on wildfires. As someone who doesn't live in an area impacted by them, I don't think too much about them. Therefore, it was eye-opening to see one through Audrey's eyes. It broke my heart to see what Audrey and her friends went through, and it's nutty to think about how much can change with just one fire. Overall, Nothing Left to Burn is a unique, carefully crafted contemporary. Even though I finished it days ago, I'm still thinking about it, especially the ending. Gosh, it was twisty and ambiguous but I don't think it could've been more perfect. I can't wait to read more by Heather!

I received an ARC of this book from First to Read in exchange for an honest review. This book had me hooked from the first chapter and I didn't want to put it down. The chapters switching from present day to flashbacks was a little confusing but I got used to it quickly. I found myself wanting to know more about Audrey, her family, and her relationship with Brooks. I like that Audrey is just a normal girl dealing with an unimaginable situation (being evacuated from your home and not knowing whether it will be there when you return) and trying to make sense of her life.

I'm not really sure what I was expecting with Nothing Left to Burn but whatever it was was nothing like what happened. I was expecting this like find-yourself story with this forest fire background, but what it ended up being was this almost thriller-mystery atmosphere that just rose and rose. The Characters I saw a lot of myself in Audrey - and a lot of who I was in high school. This both made me really happy, and also a bit nostalgic, and even sad. In high school I was very much like Audrey. I felt like I was living on the outside and then I had this toxic relationship. Would my ex have been like Brooks? Maybe actually. They have this mutually toxic relationship, like a wildfire, where they just fuel it. I really loved this metaphor because I was recently talking to someone about how relationships are like fire - the quick to start, quick to burn out, or the passionate one, or the slow burning ones. Not to mention how many love language and love words are actually fire metaphors (consume, burn for you, etc.). Suffice it to say, I could really identify with Audrey and her relationship to Brooks in a way I wasn't sure I would have from the summary. And because of this, it enriched the whole reading experience. It felt almost like an ode to my younger self - the self that didn't understand that we can't always save someone or wait for them to change, the self that didn't know that she was fueling a fire, the self that felt her family's pressure.

I ended up enjoying this book, but it did start a bit slow for me. While the writing is great, it was hard to get into the characters with the switching between flashbacks and present day. Eventually, I did end up liking the main character, Audrey, and, although this is a YA novel, I wanted her to be stronger. Ultimately she does get there, and her journey there is the point of the story; however, I wish it would have focused more on that stronger Audrey that she becomes.

Atmospheric and unique, this book is a can't-miss for YA readers filled with heartache and even some mystery!

Thank you First to Read for giving me the opportunity to read an advanced copy of Nothing Left to Burn by Heather Ezell. This book focuses around the relationships Audrey, a sixteen year old girl who is not comfortable with herself, has with her boyfriend Brooks, her family and friends. Brooks becomes Audrey's first boyfriend and you get to see their relationship not only grow, but also see the flaws in it as well. At the same time you also see how Audrey deals with being evacuated from her home while her family is out of town. At times it got a little confusing as to weather you were in the past or the present and I found that it was best to read the chapter titles as it help keep everything straight. I enjoy reading this book and hope to read more from Heather Ezell.

Nothing Left to Burn is an intriguing concept by having a coming of age story set with a wildfire in the background. This book is not one that I would have probably picked out if it wasn’t for this program, but I did enjoy it. The beginning was very confusing, just because the past and present narratives happened without knowing much about characters. As you learned more about Audrey, Brooks, and her family, the story was much easier to follow. As an adult, I didn’t really find Brooks very appealing, especially as all the sociopathic traits presented themselves. If I reflect on this as a teenage might think, I can see how Audrey would fall for a charismatic, mysterious boy fairly quickly. It would also be difficult to leave a relationship, since it’s her first and she’s just starting to feel comfortable in her own skin. The parts I really enjoyed were the ones focusing on her other relationships. The sister dynamic and her struggle with dancing just for her sister’s sake was interesting. Her friendship with Grace and her brother Quinn were much more enjoyable to read then her relationship with Brooks. Nothing Left to Burn is well written, fast-paced and an easy read. The relationship with Audrey and Brooks might be hard for some adult readers to comprehend, but I enjoyed this book overall.

I enjoyed this book. It was confusing at first and a little hard to follow, but towards the middle of the book, it became clearer who was who and the story to follow. I think it was a good tale, just about being who you are and finding out what is important to the character. I liked the ending, and that it left more to the reader to decide.

This book just wasn't for me. I keep hoping to like YA mystery/thrillers, but I think this book was the nail in the coffin that they're just not for me. But for those who like these, then I think this could be a 5 star. "Nothing Left to Burn" is very well written. The entire book feels like a blanket of anxiety. I could practically feel the shock and stress that Audrey was going through, but I still couldn't find myself actually liking Audrey. The jump in the time line of the now, the days before, and when she first met Brooks was really well done, but I struggled with the earlier flash backs. I really only wanted to read the current story line, and the events of the few days before that led up to the fires, because I honestly detested Brooks and just didn't want to read about there relationship, it actually made me uncomfortable. There's not much more I can say without spoiling things. I'm giving this a 2.5/5. while I did want to DNF this, and I speed read through some of the flashbacks, I did want to find out what happened. And I really appreciated that this book did just end where it did.

This is one of the most compelling non-dystopian YA fiction stories I've read in a long time. Audrey, as a character, is both familiar and unlike most other females in YA fiction. She is not overly exceptional or unexceptional, just a girl who is trying her best to be good and feel meaningful in the context of her own world. She felt authentic and complex, drawn in shades of gray. There is a line where she says of her sister: "She's the love of my life, and I failed as a sister" that felt very powerful and personally resonated with me. And while I saw the ending coming from a mile away, the journey to it was enjoyable. My one criticism, which is probably a consequence of reading YA as an adult, is that I really didn't understand why Brooks. It felt like the author was trying to make it clear to the reader that he is a walking red flag, but also showing how Audrey could fall for it? And while the shadiness and sociopathy came through loud and clear, the charm did not. So all their interactions felt kind of gross, which is good from a reader standpoint, but which also meant that some later actions by Audrey felt unearned and even grosser.

Interesting premise, but didn't really catch me. Very good writing, and I actually enjoyed jumping between the current timeline and the past. But, I found the twists fairly predictable, and at the end of the day, I really didn't like Audrey. (And I /really/ didn't like Brooks.) Can I please get the side novel about her best friend and her girlfriend instead? Or perhaps about her sister (who was really adorable and seemed like a lot of fun!) Very interesting book, but just not for me.

The premise of this book sounded interesting although not my usual genre. I decided to give it a chance anyway and it did not to disappoint. Heather's writing was wonderful. She breathed such life into the characters and into the events of the book that all along I felt like I was there with them. I couldn't put this book down once I started. Really good!

At 16, Audrey has never felt all that comfortable in her own skin. Brooks, the hot senior who just moved to Coto de Caza, seems to know exactly how that feels. Drawn to the aspiring firefighter with a tragic past, Audrey thinks she may have found the one thing she's "good" at -- being with Brooks. Their relationship sparks flames quickly, with both being consumed by needing the other. But when their summer romance begins to show signs of imperfection and a wildfire rages near her hometown, Audrey will learn so much more about herself and about the person she thought could be her everything. Every fire is destined to burn out... In all honesty, the female protagonist, Audrey, was difficult to follow at times. Much of her internal monologues, especially throughout the first half of the novel, were spoken in a way that made me think I missed something, like she was referencing something about herself that readers should already know. I had a bit of trouble following her train of thought. It was also confusing at times because, while the chapters alternated between past and present, Audrey would reference something in a "present" chapter that supposedly already happened but readers haven't been exposed to yet in a "past" chapter. It made the storyline tricky to follow. Despite this, I think my HS students would appreciate the character development and could see themselves in either Audrey or her incredibly flawed boyfriend, as well as any of the secondary characters. I would purchase this for my HS library collection.

Thank you to firsttoread for an e-arc of this book in exchange for my honest review. "We hunt one another. But don’t let the media fool you. We’re no worse than anywhere else. Like everywhere, like everyone, we simply want to be happy. This is our truth. We hunt for hope. Don’t you?" You know those books you think you'll like but your also not really sure about them? That's what this book was for me. I was hoping to like it but wasn't really sure because I hadn't been hearing much about it. As I started reading Nothing Left to Burn I immediately started loving it and new it was going to be nothing like a sweet little contemporary book that has a girl escaping from a fire like the cover leads you to believe. This book is so much more than that. Audrey is a sixteen-year-old young woman who is an ex-ballerina in a relationship with an older boy (Brooks), and has a young sister who has beat lymphoma twice! "My dancing was the levity. I was the healthy daughter, the strength. It was essential that I succeed. If Maya couldn’t dance, I would dance for her." The sister is now the one doing ballet and is following in Audrey's footsteps before she stopped dancing. Dancing is kind of what held them all together all these years and is now a bit of a tension in the family for Audrey. That's not what this book is about though, this book is about Audrey and Brooks and fire. Brook while being older is also very mysterious in a darkish way. Despite these two being together for a few months, they don't really know a lot about each other's past. Which is kind of a good thing, and a bad thing as we find out things with Audrey. This book jumps around from the past few months and present time and what Audrey is doing when it comes to getting away from the fire. Overall I really did love this book. At times it was a little hard to read because of the things happening and how Audrey was feeling about them. Which is something I love about this book because we do see what Audrey's feeling and she admit's to not liking things and feel uncomfortable doing certain things. This was so nice to see mentioned in a YA book especially one that deals with relationships and figuring out who you are and what you want to do with the rest of your life. I love Audrey's friends and how supportive of her they were and how they didn't let a certain someone stop them from hanging out still. I just really loved this book and I don't want to say too much and take away from you enjoying it and loving it. "Guilt like that. It takes you places." That ending though. WOW. Have you read it yet? Because if you have please message me, because I need to talk about it. POSSIBLE SPOILERS This is just me guessing because of how Audrey talked about things but I think she could be Asexual maybe? This is the quote that makes me wonder that. "Because, most days, okay, all days, sex doesn’t even interest me—it feels entirely abstracted from kissing, rarely a plausible action in my life. Maybe my head and heart are broken. Maybe I simply haven’t fully matured, or whatever. Maybe I need a new body that doesn’t feel so foreign and strange. Maybe this is entirely normal, and I simply haven’t found others who feel the same. Maybe the others are all remaining silent like me. Maybe I’m simply not there yet. Is that not enough of an answer?" I do know that her best friend Grace is bisexual and is in a relationship with Quinn. I do want to say something about Brooks because I didn't want to say much about him in my main review. I didn't like him, he always seemed a little suspicious to me and as the book went on my suspicions became true. I felt a little uncomfortable because of how right I was and that Audrey was in that type of relationship and no one else in her family seemed to sense that. Her friends were a little suspicious of him and didn't really care for him, but they were also always there for her which is something I really liked.

From the first time I read the blurb, I already intrigued. A story with wildfire as the background? I never experienced that! And well, the beginning of the book is quite boring because the author tried to keep the secret and giving hints that make me curious and wondering. What was happening on Thursday? Why is Brooks so obsessed with fire? What mystery the author trying to hide? I kept asking and became impatient to find out. But in the end, it's all good~ I like it!

This book was SO GOOD. I’m 43 and I know this is YA, but it really was a good story. I couldn’t put it down. It grabbed me early on. The protagonist is only 16, but really mature and nice and believable. It was hard for me to really understand some things about the relationship, but then I had to remind myself of how a teenager’s mind works. I loved it!

A compelling coming of age story, Nothing Left to Burn is Heather Ezell’s debut novel - and a fairly impressive one, at that. “...I don’t know how to say what I don’t yet understand.” This book is told in two timelines: one in the present that follows the twenty four hours after Audrey is woken to the firemen evacuating her community due to an oncoming wildfire; and another in the several months prior leading up to the night before the evacuation. The two timelines are woven together nicely as they alternated and fed off one another. The characters are well thought out with believable relationships, and Ezell perfectly captures that crazy first love feeling. Nothing Left to Burn touches on some complex, tough issues including mental health and toxic relationships but is nicely balanced with healthy relationships and lighter topics, making for a gripping read. I look forward to see what this author does next. Recommended.

Home alone, sixteen year old Audrey Harper wakes to firemen beating on the front door of her family home. A wildfire sweeping through Orange County has prompted an emergency evacuation of her gated community. Audrey's boyfriend Brooks is a volunteer firefighter, passionate about fire, ready to rush into the danger that now threatens their community. As the fire grows, Audrey is struggles to deal with the possibility of losing everything, secrets that are tearing her apart, and the knowledge of Brooks’ dark past. I requested this book after reading the premise and was not disappointed after reading it. This novel does not an action packed plot but it is a story that will have you thinking about it long after you finish the last page. Audrey jumps back and forth as she describes falling in love, losing her virginity to a boy she loves, and discovering that boys dark past. Audrey is a complex character and the storyline transitions between her past and the events leading up to the fire. This is a novel that will leave the reader reassessing everything they thought they knew about the characters.

Full detailed review here: https://bibliophileeuphoria.wordpress.com/2018/03/11/nothing-left-to-burn-review/ The term"surprising" does not give justice to the reaction this book initiated out of me. This was a compelling, thrilling and twisted read that had me chuckling in one moment and gasping in the next. The story was paced with a precise tension that added to the story's intense plot. To put it simply, Nothing Left to Burn is a book that I did not expect AT ALL, and I would so read it again.

I enter the selection for pretty much every YA contemporary and every thriller I see on here. They're two genres that I know will be decently quick reads even if I don't like the book itself. So I was quite surprised by this contemporary/thriller combination. I've never quite read a book like it. It was a really addictive read. Dark and creepy and suspenseful, in spite of the fact that the main twist is pretty evident. I didn't guess the details precisely, but the big reveal itself is not much of a surprise. The way this book is constructed is really cool: the reader is thrown into the narrative without knowing anything, and then slowly the background begins to unfurl alongside the plot, through chapters alternating between before and after-style chapters. I thought it was a unique take on the thriller storyline. Not a perfect book, but a good one. 3.5 stars. https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/2312231054?book_show_action=false&from_review_page=1

Heather Ezell has written a stunning debut that will captivate readers until the very last page. I am so conflicted on my feelings on Audrey’s relationship with Brooks. In the flashbacks to their first dates, I can’t lie, I was totally in love with it. I was reading the book on my laptop, staring at the screen and smiling like an idiot. Yes, it was that cute. Obviously I knew something had gone amiss between then and the present time, but it was nice to live in ignorant bliss for a while. They were so cute. Swoon-worthy cute. Also, the different timelines and flashbacks worked very well. As my family can attest to, I was constantly calling out predictions for what was going to happen based on the little seeds of information and doubt that Ezell planted throughout the novel. I was right on most of them, at least in a roundabout way. I thought that all of the characters were flushed out nicely, and I especially loved Grace, Audrey’s girlfriend and Quinn, Grace’s girlfriend. They were kind and supportive to Audrey, and totally adorable together. Maya, her younger sister, was an absolute delight and I loved everything about her character. As for Audrey’s relationship with Hayden, Grace’s older brother, I think for the most part it evolved realistically. I loved when Audrey called him out for not making the effort to be her friend until she had a boyfriend, giving us more insight into her past dynamic and overall relationship with Hayden. We get to see Audrey changed a lot throughout the book, especially as her and Brooks’s secrets are slowly revealed. I really liked her as a protagonist, even though she was flawed, like all human beings are. It’s mentioned in the book that she has depression, and it seems that that has led her to have a sort of eating disorder as well, although that is not the main focus of the story. Overall, this book is an amazing debut, and I strongly recommend that everyone preorder a copy. This book will be released on March 13.

Sixteen year old Audrey Harper is forced to evacuate her family's home after a wildfire in Orange County, California threatens to spread into her gated Coto de Coza neighborhood. While awaiting word whether or not her family's home will be safe, Audrey looks back on her relationship with Brooks, a troubled volunteer firefighter. While she feels a strong connection with him that she has never experienced before she can't help but wonder if there is more to Brooks' past. With the fire threatening to destroy so much already, will her relationship with Brooks be able to withstand the intensity? This book was certainly intense and definitely shows that even teenagers in high school deal with real issues and high school relationships can be just as meaningful as the ones you have later in life. I liked the alternating timelines and enjoyed reading about how the things in the past led to what was happening in the present time. Overall, I thought the book sent a positive strong message to be true to who you are. Definitely recommend to anyone looking for a deeper young adult novel. I received a free ebook copy of this book from the First To Read program. All views expressed are my honest opinion.

Summary: Audrey Harper has a secret and it's a secret that she needs to be keep.  The secret isn't that she lost her virginity the night before to her possibly bad boy boyfriend, Brooks, and the secret isn't about what happened with her best friend's older brother on Friday.  No, Audrey's secret is about the fire raging through her hometown in Orange County and dark secret from Brooks' past that may be related to the origin of the fire. Review: I wasn't sure what to expect with this book.  It's being marketed as a mystery but it's so much more than that.  The book is actually part mystery and part part coming-of-age story with a little romance and a hint of a thriller.  Audrey is a complicated main character who is trying to make sense of huge life changing events such as falling in love and being betrayed.  She is complex and realistic and a main character that makes you keep reading. The reader is drawn into mysteries of Brooks along with Audrey.  You are compelled to follow Audrey on her journey to learn what Brooks is hiding as everything is revealed as she travels down the dark and twisty path of secrets.  It is this path that makes the book a must read.  Ezell crafted a mystery that is slowly revealed in an enticingly languid pace with beautifully haunting proses which makes the reader unable to put it down. Bottom-line: "Nothing Left To Burn" is a beautifully written mystery with complex and realistic characters that make the book a must read. Final Rating: 4 out of 5

Thanks to Penguin’s First-to-Read Program for giving me access to this e-galley. This is my honest review: 3 Stars. The story was compelling. The characters were engaging and, in some cases, endearing. The plot, while easily surmised by the midway point, made this a page-turner, even if all you wanted to know was how it would end. The ending left much to be desired and, honestly, the last 50 or so pages had me wanting to throw away the previous 275–I just felt things got a bit too out of hand. Overall, a decent read, but not one I’d be in a hurry to recommend.

This book is freaking blowing my mind with how much I am loving it. First off, i am not really one to enjoy YA novels since i've read too many terrible ones in my day but this the type of book anyone can enjoy. Heather Ezell is a phenomenal story teller and knows how to string you along with just the smallest bits of information and leave you craving to know more, staying up past your bedtime and unable to put the book down. The main character: relatable, real, understandable, surprisingly human. Her friends: fantastic, Brooks...find out for yourself! I am 85% done with the book as of right now and already writing a review, which is so unlike myself. At this point i don't care how it ends because its already reached a solid 5/5 from me and I'm sure the ending will only reinforce my stance. I want to say so many things but don't want to give anything away. This book has a wonderful fast paced, unnerving yet beautiful quality to it that I'm sure even the pickiest reader can appreciate. Highly recommend to anyone who's hesitating to just dive right in and I'm sure by the 3rd chapter you'll not want to put it down.

I grew up in Nevada, which means a healthy fear of fire was drilled into my head basically since birth. This book captures the intensity of wild fires perfectly. It's very addicting and dark, and I couldn't put it down. I think that a lot of people will really like this book, but it hit a little too close to home for me. Reading this stressed me out, thinking about all the times I packed bags growing up in case we had to evacuate because of a fire. Overall, this book was very well-written, but it just wasn't for me.

5 stars Taking place over 16 intense hours, Heather Ezell's debut, Nothing Left to Burn tells the story of sixteen-year-old Audrey who is navigating her tumultuous and all-consuming relationship while also juggling her family's evacuation from the path of a deadly wildfire sweeping through Orange County, California. Audrey not only wrestles with the possibility of losing her family home, but also with the secrets from her boyfriend's past coming to light and the danger lurking behind her feelings and the fire in the distance. THIS WAS SO AMAZING EVERYONE PLEASE READ. I totally was not expecting to like this so much--honestly, I assumed it was like a lot of other contemporaries until I read the word "wildfire" and caved into requesting it on First to Read. (Because wildfires are exciting! I mean, boo, wildfires.) It just--it all came together really nicely and it also built up really well and I could see the symbolism and parallels within the novel while it was also a very entertaining read. I had to physically stop myself from bingeing it all in 2 hours, cutting myself off because it was already midnight and I had to wake up at 6 am. But you better bet your whole bookshelf that one of the first things I did that morning was keep reading. Not only was it very enjoyable to read and I was definitely entertained by the plot and pacing and just intensity of the story, but I could see how Ezell worked the novel to slowly reveal tidbits while simultaneously growing Audrey's character (I did forget her name, but semantics). At first you think it's just a wildfire and just a boyfriend, but it grows into so much more. The boyfriend has a past. The boyfriend has a dark past. The boyfriend is obsessed with fire. Seriously, this book was on fire not only with the recurring theme of burning/fire/flames/ashes, but also just the parallels in it and how it grew more thrilling as you read on. It's told from Audrey's POV, but it cycles in between what's happening now and things from the past (like when she first met her boyfriend Brooks). Sometimes when there's multiple POVs or there's multiple times, I get confused at what I'm reading because I don't pay too much attention to the title (Thursday and 5:51 AM are just words to me). But I was able to easily distinguish what point in time the story was from, and I think that's one of this story's biggest wins in helping the reader distinguish between what's happening when without the need for chapter titles. Whether it was because of how Ezell structured the sentences or the tone or mood or atmosphere, she managed to successfully convey what was happening without the need for chapter titles, which was awesome for me to read. Also, the plot just gets so intense and this mimics how the forest fire gets more intense and I just love all the connections between everything. It's like all the parts of the novel are progressing at the same rate--even though the backstory, fire, and character development happen at different points in time & with different mental states for Audrey. It ended up feeling very cohesive and that's just part of why I loved this. Also, the thriller aspect (the wildfire is suspected to be a product of arson...) was super entertaining and I just thoroughly enjoyed the plot (I never really understood the true effect and what happens during a wildfire and I'm moved by Ezell's portrayal.) I also really like the relationships in this novel--whether it was friends or family or talking about toxic relationships (dangerous feelings, a boy consuming your life, etc.) It all had a very good message and I liked how Ezell was very honest about Audrey's views on sex despite her family's insistence on abstinence. If I had to pick out something that could have used more work, I'd probably just say where the chapters ended and where the book ended. Sometimes it ended a little abruptly with a cliffhanger, like in Empress of a Thousand Skies, and then picked up on a less intense moment and at times it felt a little bit like a cop out or a way to avoid writing those really intense scenes. Also, it did end a lot sooner than I wanted it to because things happen at the end that are super ASDFKLJDLS. But I can definitely see why Ezell ended everything this way, and so this isn't really something that needs to change. Overall, I had an amazing time reading this book and was so surprised by how much I enjoyed it! I would definitely recommend this to everyone--lovers of contemporary or sci-fi or fantasy--because of the awesome character-based themes found in contemporaries that balances the action and intensity commonly found in SFF. Thank you to Penguin Teen/First to Read for providing me with a digital review copy in exchange for an honest review!

I received this book from Penguin for free in exchange for an honest review. Three and a half stars. I liked the way the story was unwrapped piece by piece. You knew there was a big picture but not quite how all the pieces fit. Great debut novel.

***Thanks to First to Read for providing me a complimentary copy of NOTHING LEFT TO BURN by Heather Ezell in exchange for my honest review.*** 3 STARS Left alone overnight, sixteen-year-old Audrey must evacuate her home when California wildfires threaten her neighborhood. Among her concerns, her boyfriend Brooks, a volunteer firefighter. The next eighteen hours will have Audrey evaluating all of her relationships. Heather Ezell’s debut showed a lot of promise for her writing career with eloquent language that left me with feelings of tension and frustration. Her characters were both interesting and believable. I loved Audrey’s relationship with her best friend and her BFF’s girlfriend, as well as Audrey’s relationship with her younger sister Maya, a cancer survivor. Their parents, though at times clueless, loved and supported her. I had difficulty accepting Brooks as a love interest, because it never made sense that she would be attracted to the clichéd bad boy. I needed to buy into the relationship for the story to work. I also wasn’t a fan of the timeline. The tension-filled minute by minute present time of the evacuation was often eclipsed by the backstory chapters of the relationship between Audrey and Brooks. I also figured out most of the twist in the first chapter. The open ending felt incomplete. An epilogue would have made me up my rating. A lukewarm recommendation for NOTHING LEFT TO BURN.

I would love to be able to read this book and write a review. But I have tried 10 different ways to download this book after receiving the email saying I was eligible for the advanced copy and NOTHING works Nook, Aldiko etc. There is NO option of support for this site. The "contact us" tab says they "love to hear from their readers" except there is NO way to contact them!! The "write us" tab takes you nowhere!! I was so excited to join this group and even more excited to receive an offer to read one of the books I submitted for....but obviously it is brain surgery on how to even download the book to read..am I the ONLY person having issues???.very disappointed!

 


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