Burning for Revenge (Tomorrow #5) by John Marsden
Published: 1997, republished 7 February 2013 by Quercus
Pages: 274 (paperback)
Genre/s: Young Adult, War
Source: Own library
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As book five in the series, this review may contain minor spoilers.
The action doesn't let up in the most explosive Tomorrow book yet -- another international bestseller from John Marsden.
The journey to Stratton isn't an easy trip, especially when the enemy's headquarters lie somewhere along the way. And that's exactly where Ellie and her friends unwittingly find themselves. With only five of them against hundreds of armed soldiers, escape seems like a suicide mission. But Stratton is where Ellie's grandmother lives, so the journey must be made -- even though the odds aren't good.
Ellie must summon all of her courage and guerrilla instincts to survive the latest high-stakes installment of the action-packed Tomorrow series.
Picking up shortly after the conclusion of Darkness, Be My Friend, the teens find themselves back in Hell, feeling like they have been abandoned by the New Zealanders after their failed attempt to sabotage the local airport. Each is driven by their own feelings as to what they want to do next, but as a group they once again make a decision and stick to it.
After deciding that staying in Hell is not in the best interests of the group as a whole, they decide to make the trip to the nearest big city, Stratton, in hopes of making contact with their families, some of which are rumoured to be working in the nearby vicinity.
On a personal note, when reading these books I always come across more and more Australian slang words that I had completely forgotten about over the past few years, and I loved it (and even tried some out on friends and colleagues, with much hilarity and strange looks ensuing). I've always wondered how this comes across to readers who aren't Australian or haven't been exposed to the slang before, but this whole series definitely FEELS Australian, and I'm glad that hasn't faded away.
Ellie continues to feel conflicted about her feelings for Lee, and there's a quite grown-up perspective to how they behave with each other which reflects just how much the characters have matured and continue to do so.
Burning for Revenge is probably the most action packed book of the series so far - the group embarks on yet another act of sabotage, which is probably the most on-the-fly thing they have done so far - and they utilise both their old knowledge and bravery they have gained along the way. The final act of the book is also incredibly intense, and really shows the lengths that the characters go to to protect each other - and even forgive something they could never have moved on from in the past.
Burning for Revenge is the fifth installment of the Tomorrow series, and although the risk with such a long series is that the plot and characters can feel a bit similar, Marsden continues to up the ante both in terms of intensity and in how far the teens go to try and sabotage the enemy that has invaded Australia.