On the Come Up

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#1 New York Times bestseller · Seven starred reviews · Boston Globe-Horn Book Award Honor Book

“For all the struggle in this book, Thomas rarely misses a step as a writer. Thomas continues to hold up that mirror with grace and confidence. We are lucky to have her, and lucky to know a girl like Bri.”—The New York Times Book Review

Sixteen-year-old Bri wants to be one of the greatest rappers of all time. Or at least win her first battle. As the daughter of an underground hip hop legend who died right before he hit big, Bri’s got massive shoes to fill.

But it’s hard to get your come up when you’re labeled a hoodlum at school, and your fridge at home is empty after your mom loses her job. So Bri pours her anger and frustration into her first song, which goes viral . . . for all the wrong reasons.

Bri soon finds herself at the center of a controversy, portrayed by the media as more menace than MC. But with an eviction notice staring her family down, Bri doesn’t just want to make it—she has to. Even if it means becoming the very thing the public has made her out to be.  

Insightful, unflinching, and full of heart, On the Come Up is an ode to hip hop from one of the most influential literary voices of a generation. It is the story of fighting for your dreams, even as the odds are stacked against you; and about how, especially for young black people, freedom of speech isn’t always free.

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About the author

Angie Thomas is the #1 New York Times bestselling, award-winning author of The Hate U Give and On the Come Up. A former teen rapper who holds a BFA in creative writing, Angie was born, raised, and still resides in Mississippi. You can find her online at www.angiethomas.com.

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4.5
41 total
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Additional Information

Publisher
HarperCollins
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Published on
Feb 5, 2019
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Pages
464
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ISBN
9780062498571
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Features
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Language
English
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Genres
Young Adult Fiction / People & Places / United States / African American
Young Adult Fiction / Performing Arts / Music
Young Adult Fiction / Social Themes / Homelessness & Poverty
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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When Anthony's angst-ridden rock 'n' roll lyrics go viral, he's unwittingly cast as the school rebel. The truth is, he's not trying to be anyone's hero.

Anthony Castillo needs a new life.  His teachers are clueless autocrats except for Mr. Darren, who’s in charge of the rock band program. The girls at school are either shallow cutebots or out of his league. And his parents mean well, but they just make things worse. It’s as if Anthony is stuck on the bottom level of his favorite video game, Liberation Force 4.5. Except there is no secret escape tunnel and definitely no cheat code. 

Fed up, pissed off, and feeling trapped, Anthony writes his first song for his rock band, the Rusty Soles. His only problem: Arts Night. If he exercises his right to free speech and sings his original lyrics—where his own bombs will drop—he and his band will be through. 

The clock is ticking. Time for Anthony to pick his battles and decide what’s really worth fighting for.

Praise for BREAKOUT
“Emerson captures the heady mixture of pride, vulnerability, amazement, and fear Anthony feels in having created something of personal significance that, once public, takes on a life of its own.” –Publishers Weekly
 
“A funny, perceptive book.” –Booklist
 
“The narrative momentum keeps readers invested in Anthony's moral conundrum.” –Kirkus Reviews
 
“A solid coming-of-age tale that younger readers will pick up for its emotion and shades of rock and roll.” –School Library Journal
 
“Anthony’s narrative voice is the very real cri de coeur of every middle-school boy who feels as though his real talents are being underserved by the school curriculum.” –The Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books
In an unforgettable new novel from award-winning authors Jason Reynolds and Brendan Kiely, two teens—one black, one white—grapple with the repercussions of a single violent act that leaves their school, their community, and, ultimately, the country bitterly divided by racial tension.

A bag of chips. That’s all sixteen-year-old Rashad is looking for at the corner bodega. What he finds instead is a fist-happy cop, Paul Galluzzo, who mistakes Rashad for a shoplifter, mistakes Rashad’s pleadings that he’s stolen nothing for belligerence, mistakes Rashad’s resistance to leave the bodega as resisting arrest, mistakes Rashad’s every flinch at every punch the cop throws as further resistance and refusal to STAY STILL as ordered. But how can you stay still when someone is pounding your face into the concrete pavement?

But there were witnesses: Quinn Collins—a varsity basketball player and Rashad’s classmate who has been raised by Paul since his own father died in Afghanistan—and a video camera. Soon the beating is all over the news and Paul is getting threatened with accusations of prejudice and racial brutality. Quinn refuses to believe that the man who has basically been his savior could possibly be guilty. But then Rashad is absent. And absent again. And again. And the basketball team—half of whom are Rashad’s best friends—start to take sides. As does the school. And the town. Simmering tensions threaten to explode as Rashad and Quinn are forced to face decisions and consequences they had never considered before.

Written in tandem by two award-winning authors, this tour de force shares the alternating perspectives of Rashad and Quinn as the complications from that single violent moment, the type taken from the headlines, unfold and reverberate to highlight an unwelcome truth.
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