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On the Come Up Reviews

On the Come Up by Angie Thomas, Tim Marrs

On the Come Up

Angie Thomas, Tim Marrs

4.70 out of 5

5 reviews

Category: Children's
Imprint: Walker Books Ltd
Publisher: Walker Books Ltd
Publication date: 28 May 2018
ISBN: 9781406372168

The award-winning author of The Hate U Give returns with a powerful story about hip hop, freedom of speech – and fighting for your dreams, even as the odds are stacked against you.

Bri wants to be one of the greatest rappers of all time. As the daughter of an underground hip hop legend who died right before he hit big, Bri’s got massive shoes to fill. But when her first song goes viral for all the wrong reasons, Bri finds herself at the centre of controversy and portrayed by the media as more menace than MC. And with an eviction notice staring her family down, Bri no longer just wants to make it – she has to. Even if it means becoming the very thing the public has made her out to be

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5 stars out of 5
Fiona Noble
16 Nov 2018

" A tough debut to follow, but Thomas does so in huge style in her second novel"

When The Hate You Give was published last year nobody could have predicted the astonishing success that would follow, including the accolade of British Book Awards' Children's Book of the Year. A tough debut to follow, but Thomas does so in huge style in her second novel. Set in the same world as The Hate U Give, 16-year-old Bri is an aspiring rapper, living in the shadow of her underground rap legend dad who died before hitting the big time.

Reviews

4 stars out of 5
16 Feb 2019

"meets expectations and then some"

On the Come Up meets expectations and then some.

On a superficial level it is less overtly political than her first novel, but the exploration of what it means to be black, female and poor is incredibly powerful

5 stars out of 5
Constance Grady
5 Feb 2019

"It’s wise and witty, and it boasts Thomas’s characteristic ability to handle serious questions of systemic racism with a light and even joyous touch"

Angie Thomas’s first book, The Hate U Give, recently celebrated its 100th consecutive week at No. 1 on the New York Times best-seller list. It was a runaway and well-deserved success, a YA novel that handled the police shooting of an unarmed black teen with equal parts sincerity and warmth. Thomas’s second book — On the Come Up, out this week — is well on its way to becoming just such a runaway success. It’s wise and witty, and it boasts Thomas’s characteristic ability to handle serious questions of systemic racism with a light and even joyous touch... On the Come Up is earnest and warm-hearted, a careful examination of social issues that’s built around an immensely endearing main character. It’s likely to assure Thomas’s continued and well-deserved dominance on the best-seller lists.

4 stars out of 5
Alex O’Connell
2 Feb 2019

"A pacey follow-up to The Hate U Give"

Can she navigate her friendships with her old pals Malik and Sonny, her new boy, Curtis, and her dad’s former manager, Supreme, and emerge as herself and not a cash-cow clone? You betcha. Thomas, a former rapper herself, packs so much into these 448 pages, but they fly along with the agility of one of Bri’s freestyles.
 

5 stars out of 5
Patrice Lawrence
30 Jan 2019

"a celebration of African American cultural achievement"

...the novel’s strength lies in the way it explores the loves, fears and friendships of an African American community that is doing its best to survive under an increasingly hostile administration... joyous and very funny... [Bri] is deeply loyal and has a great repertoire of one liners... Her friendship with Sonny and Malik is exquisitely portrayed... a celebration of African American cultural achievement in music, TV and film, bursting with references that feel like a gift to readers who don’t usually see their lives represented in this way.