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Three Hallows March Post: On The Come Up by Angie Thomas Book Review

On the Come UpTitle: On The Come Up
Author: Angie Thomas
Publisher: Walker Books
Source: Bought Myself
Rating: 5/5 stars

Book Summary:

Sixteen-year-old Bri wants to be one of the greatest rappers of all time. Or at least make it out of her neighbourhood one day. As the daughter of an underground rap legend who died before he hit big, Bri’s got big shoes to fill. But now that her mom has unexpectedly lost her job, food banks and shutoff notices are as much a part of Bri’s life as beats and rhymes. With bills piling up and homelessness staring her family down, Bri no longer just wants to make it—she has to make it.

On the Come Up is Angie Thomas’s homage to hip-hop, the art that sparked her passion for storytelling and continues to inspire her to this day. It is the story of fighting for your dreams, even as the odds are stacked against you; of the struggle to become who you are and not who everyone expects you to be, and of the desperate realities of poor and working-class black families.

Book Summary:

After reading The Hate You Give when it came out I was excited to read what Angie Thomas was working on next. Although I enjoyed THUG, I didn't love it as much as everyone else but still thought that her writing and characters were great to continue reading her work. This leads me to be less than surprised when I fell in love with On The Come Up, it was also great to read with Alex and Rachel to see where our views differed. 

From the moment I started On The Come Up I knew I was going to love it, I was pulled into Bri's world and didn't want to leave, it is probably one of the only books I liked being over 400 pages. From the start, we get the sense that Bri's home life is not the best and that her family struggles. This, although is hard to read about, was a part of the book that I liked to read as this idea is not often tackled in YA books. This is something that Angie Thomas does so well, tackling issues that we need to see more of in YA. 

With this focusing so much on Bri's family life, one of the strongest parts of this book is clearly the family relationship. I loved the relationship between her Mum and brother, this was something that develops throughout the novel and evolves into something that is fleshed out and a notable part of the story. I also loved the relationship with her Aunt Pooh because, although starting off as something small, it becomes something more central to the plot. 

This relationship also leads to more complex ideas of the book including the inclusion of drugs and the assumptions that black people have to face in daily life. This is something that Angie Thomas does so well in her books, tackling real-life issues that are intertwined with a narrative. I also think that with a character like Bri, who is so complex, handles all that the world throws at her and I loved that. I, also, felt that I connected well with Bri as well, there were so many characteristics and parts of her personality that I did like and kept me invested in the story. Bri also has a strong connection with her friends and I loved this about the story, especially as they had their own stories and paths to follow themselves.

The book, obviously, following rapping and Bri on the come up (I had to) on her rise to fame and I loved this part. The way that the lyrics were embedded into the story was great and I loved this. This was definitely the part of the story that turned my head and I knew that I was heavily invested into the story. There is nothing that I really disliked about, On The Come Up, I just loved it. 
The Verdict: 

On The Come Up is yet another amazing book by Angie Thomas that demands to be read by all. 

Check out the other members of The Three Hallows here:

Have you read On The Come Up yet? Do you want to? Let me know in the comments below. 


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