Burn Our Bodies Down

Burn Our Bodies Down
Age Range
Release Date
July 07, 2020
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From the author of the New York Times bestseller Wilder Girls comes a new twisty thriller about a girl whose past has always been a mystery—until she decides to return to her mother’s hometown . . . where history has a tendency to repeat itself. Ever since Margot was born, it’s been just her and her mother. No answers to Margot’s questions about what came before. No history to hold on to. No relative to speak of. Just the two of them, stuck in their run-down apartment, struggling to get along. But that’s not enough for Margot. She wants family. She wants a past. And she just found the key she needs to get it: A photograph, pointing her to a town called Phalene. Pointing her home. Only, when Margot gets there, it’s not what she bargained for. Margot’s mother left for a reason. But was it to hide her past? Or was it to protect Margot from what’s still there? The only thing Margot knows for sure is there’s poison in their family tree, and their roots are dug so deeply into Phalene that now that she’s there, she might never escape.

Editor review

1 review
Excellent book for people who want the bite of a Courtney Summers book but creepier
Overall rating
Writing Style
Audiobook review

Margot is tired of not getting answers from her mother about where she came from and the history of their family. When she finds an old picture with the name of a town on it, she leaves immediately to find the answers she craves. However, once she arrives, something in the town is off. Something with her grandmother is off. And if Margot wants answers, she will have to face scary truths about just where she comes from and why her mom left.

One of my favorite parts of BURN OUR BODIES DOWN is the theme of generational problems. What someone's parents or grandparents or great-grandparents thought they could ignore or get rid of can continue to haunt future generations. Even when someone, like Margot's mom, decides to try to separate herself from the narrative, she can't fully escape it. In Margot's journey, she learns that if you want truth, you have to be prepared for the good and the bad (and in some cases, the evil). Though there are plenty things to give you the creeps (like the weird corn stalks or the death of someone no one in a small town recognizes), human evil is the biggest scare of all.

I enjoyed the narrator and particularly the way they used different voices for each character. They were all nicely distinct, even in scenes where several people are in a conversation. At times, the narrator got a bit melodramatic for a scene, but overall, it was fun to listen.

BURN OUR BODIES DOWN is a solid sophomore novel from Rory Powers, perfect for people who want the hard gray areas of a Courtney Summers novel but with more creepiness.
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