Cover Image: Burn Down, Rise Up

Burn Down, Rise Up

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date:

Member Reviews

I loved this book. I wasn't sure at first how I felt about it, since the start was a little slower than I was expecting, but it hooked me. I love the relationships between the characters that Tirado creates; they all feel so real and possible. 

This novel is about a young woman trying to save her mom and her crush's cousin, but more than that it's about community and how we fight for those we care about. 

I thank netgalley and the publisher for the eARC I received.
Was this review helpful?
A monster-hunting adventure and a love letter to the Bronx. This book was wonderful. Completely had me sold at "Stranger Things meets Get Out" - I am here for this. Whole heartedly. 

The quality of the writing itself was at times a little rough, but the richness of the setting and the realness of the characters more than made up for it. The heart of this story really is the Bronx and the community that ensured through hardships like fires, black mold, and slumlords. The author uses the story’s monsters as a vehicle to personify and explore these hardships, which gives the book more depth than some other YA urban fantasy I’ve read. Also, this book is sapphic! The romance felt a tad underdeveloped, and the dialogue wasn’t always completely believable, but the relationship was still incredibly wholesome and I loved watching the main character, Raquel, grow more comfortable with her own feelings.

Definitely will recommend. 
4.5 stars.
Was this review helpful?
Burn Down Rise Up by Vincent Tirado was an amazing book. The book follows Raquel a teenager in the Bronx. This book was hard to put down and was 100% worth the read. I read the entire book in about a day. Thank you to Net-Galley for a free e-arc in exchange for an honest review.
Was this review helpful?
Content warnings: gore, violence, racism, gun use, police brutality, discussion of cannibalism, fire injuries/burns

Vincent Tirado's action-packed debut YA LGBTQ+ mystery thriller, Burn down, rise up, takes readers into the Bronx. It has weirdness, blood, darkness, creepiness and gore. A internet game leads to teenagers going missing.
Was this review helpful?
Thank you Netgalley and Sourcebooks Fire publishers for an advanced e-book and advanced audiobook in exchange for honest reviews. 

This novel is a solid work of YA Horror/Thriller with Sapphic rep. My personal rating doesn't have to do with any particular instance in the novel, but I believe the overall book didn't reach its full potential. I especially loved the history of the Bronx noted in the novel and the commentary of the communities. I wished the novel captured my attention just a bit more. It's a three star as I didn't hate this novel by any means, and I did in fact enjoy the author's writing style but something about this novel kept having me put it down and revisit it. To the extent that I started it months ago and just now finished it and writing the review.

I'm interested in more of this author's future works.
Was this review helpful?
Sixteen-year-old Raquel lives in the Bronx and has done her best to ignore all the disappearances that have been occurring in the last year. All that changes when her crush’s cousin goes missing. Soon after, her mother comes down with a mysterious illness, which might have something to do with the disappearances. Raquel and Charlize team up to investigate, which leads them to an urban legend called the Echo Game, but what if it’s not just a story? What if it’s real, and that’s how they find the missing people?

The summary called this book Jordan Peele meets Stranger Things, and I’d say that’s right on point. It was completely engrossing. There was paranormal stuff, a “game” that reminded me of my favorite podcast episodes of Creepy mixed with forgotten/glossed over elements of racial history. Also a badass leading lady. 10/10 do recommend.

This one is out now wherever you get your books.
Was this review helpful?
This book really took me by surprise! I wasn’t sure if I would love it since it’s not what I usually read but it definitely had a lot of offer. It has a unique premise and world that was fun to dive into, and realistic characters that I enjoyed coming to know.
Was this review helpful?
I love a horror based around a bunch of people doing something that tempts the supernatural into coming to get them, and then being surprised when it does. (And when I say “love” I mean I will literally throw you out of my house if you say Candyman at a mirror twice). When I saw there was a sapphic version of this trope coming out, you bet I smashed the request button on NetGalley so hard.

The first hurdle any horror like this has to get over is giving us a horrifying scene right off-the-bat that’s scary even though we don’t really know what’s going on. This book does a great job at that. Charlize’s cousin, Cisco, has been missing. He comes back from being missing “wrong” and accidentally gives “something” that’s clearly supernatural to Raquel’s mom, who’s a nurse. This beautifully sets up both Charlize and Raquel to be heavily invested in what exactly is going on in their neighborhood. They used to be close friends but now they’ve drifted to acquaintances, and Raquel has the hots for Charlize. It’s just the right set-up.

The next hurdle the book has to get over is why are the Black kids sneaking out at night to play this viral game tempting the supernatural at 3am? The book takes this head-on with the characters acknowledging doing such a thing doesn’t go with their culture. Charlize and Raquel are motivated to save their family members, but what about Cisco? We learn he befriended a bunch of white theater kids who asked him to come along and do it as part of some theater kids bonding activity. I have to say, as a once upon a time theater kid myself, this sort of thing rang as very true.

So is the horror scary? Yes, largely because it’s starting to reach out into the Bronx even among those who aren’t playing the Echo Game. But I will say, I didn’t think it was terrifyingly scary. If this was a movie, I could sleep after it. Unlike The Ring, which made me terrified of being in the same room with my own television for two weeks. So I’d say it’s moderate on the scary scale. It’s definitely kind of gory, and the peril is real.

The relationships are interesting, realistic, and Raquel has just the right amount of them. She has her best friend, his brother, Charlize, Cisco, her father, and her mother. The fact that she was living with her mother and has to move in with her bachelor pad father while her mother is ill was one of my favorite parts of the book. Her dad clearly loves her and they were absolutely part of each other’s lives before, but there’s a difference between the dad who loyally pays child support who you see a few times a month and the dad you live with. I appreciated how that difference was drawn out, acknowledging the awkwardness without blaming either of them. I also liked how her dad both brought out the Latinx aspect of the story, as well as giving her a direct connection to when the Bronx burned in the 1970s. (This time period, of course, is when the echo draws from).

The Charlize/Raquel situation was cute. I liked how Raquel’s best friend, Aaron, also likes Charlize, and he just wants Raquel to be honest with him about liking her as well. I was a little bit confused about why Raquel has some internalized homophobia making it hard for her to accept that she likes Charlize. It was unclear to me if this was coming from her family (who seemed very accepting) or if it was just worrying how her peers would react or what exactly. I think a richer development of that would have helped make the scenes where Raquel works on accepting herself more powerful.

Overall, this is a fun take on the viral game tempting the supernatural trope. The setting of the Bronx and the main character’s Afro-Latinx culture are both well developed. It’s a medium scary read that will certainly appeal to YA readers.

An interesting new take on the "teenagers play a viral game and shit hits the fan" trope.

Black Latinx and lesbian rep in this book.

Check out my full review.

*I received a free copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.*

Want some YA horror to start off your #pride🌈 reading? Boy do I have a new release for you!
Full review on my book blog linked in profile.
*I received a free copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.*
#bookalicious #booksinthewild #avidreader #bookaesthetic #whatimreading #bookrecs #sapphicbooks
Was this review helpful?
I love when books take the history of a city (or borough) and use it to help develop a storyline. This horrific novel follows Raquel and takes readers down a path of suspense while leaving them on the edge of their seats. Readers are able to connect with the characters and clutch their chests during certain moments of the book. It did, however, take a little convincing for me to get into the book, but I still recommend.
Was this review helpful?
This was so easy to get to read and I really enjoyed reading about Bronx and its history!
While reading this I could see everything play out in front of me like a movie and I was thinking how this could be a great movie or even tv-show!
 Ppl have compared this to stranger things which I haven't watched it, but now I wanna watch it n see how similar these two are!!
The only complaint I had is that I wanted more of  Raquel and Charlieze relationship. Other than this no complaints:))
Also the family relationships and friendships in this was so wholesome and some parts made me laugh,smile, cry,etc.
Thank you so much to the author, netgalley and sourcebooks fire for providing an e-arc in exchange for an honest review.
Was this review helpful?
Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for providing me with an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. 
An amazing, fast-paced, read that I couldn't help but adore! I loved the worldbuilding and how the fantasy part of the story was done. The way that they incorporated the Bronx into it was interesting and well-done. Overall, this was an intriguing thriller that I adored! I definitely recommend it to anyone who enjoys fast-paced fantasy. 5/5 stars from me!
Was this review helpful?
This book felt like a history lesson on the Bronx wrapped in an intense adventure. I was wrapped from the beginning to end...biting my nails and nervous as heck the entire time! I appreciated the mix of the history, comedy and grief. I did enjoy this read.
Was this review helpful?
This isn't the type of book I would normally read but I'm glad I gave this book an honest chance!! It was a great, action-packed and enough creeps to make it a spine-tingler. The world the author built and the Echo Game are both original and brilliant. I loved that the author snuck in some history and controversial issues, but smoothly, so it wasn't the main focus of the story, but still was prevalent. It would be neat if the author wrote a series of this storyline, but in a different part of the world, in a different time, playing "the game" to save loved ones and the city/timeline!!
Was this review helpful?
A wild premise of a book and very well delivered. I always like when authors can put a whole new spin on a genre I think is overdone and come out with a gem and Vincent Tirado definitely managed that!

Thank you to netgalley and the publishers for providing me with an arc for an honest review.
Was this review helpful?
This was such an engrossing read! From the first page, the story is riveting, fast-paced and nonstop action. It’s dark, it’s creepy, and it’s full of suspense. For me, what really drove the story were the characters. Whether a main character or not, they felt real. They felt like people I know, which drew me into the story, into their lives and feelings.

And the premise was wonderful. It was a take on the multiverse that I loved. In this interpretation, the Echo exists as the link between worlds. The idea is that collective trauma lives an echo on the world, and the effect that has going future. There are Echoes all over the world, but this one is set in the Bronx, harkening back to a particular time in the history of the place, one entirely true. And it’s up to Raquel to overcome the Echo and set the world to rights again.

There are threads of social awareness woven into the story, issues that led to the collective trauma faced by those in the Bronx. Gentrification, racism, racial profiling… all of these things played a part in the horrors that served as the inspiration for this story. Things that played a part in creating the Echo in the world of the book.

This book was a brilliant combination of social commentary, horror, and creepiness. So good!
Was this review helpful?
I received an ARC for an Honest Review from NetGalley.

I really enjoyed this book from the start,  what if entering the "Echo Game" is the only way to save your family and friends? For Raquel and Charlize, there’s no choice, Raquel and her friends suddenly find themselves playing the "Echo Game" and entering into a warped time in the Bronx's past to save a friend. 

My first time reading from this Author Vincent Tirado and I would definitely recommend it!!
Was this review helpful?
Thanks to netgalley for the arc. 
I went into this book with almost zero expectations, but it engaged me from the very first page and ended being an enjoyable thriller. The premise of the book, Bronx and it's ugly history and the game based on it was quite interesting. The author has managed to create an eerie mood which is well maintained throughout the book  . The characters with their own complicated and not so perfect lives were crafted well. I loved the relationship between Aron and Raquel which was quite endearing. I loved it better than Charlize and Raquel's relationship, which could have had been better developed. The infusion of spirituality,  gothics and history  has been done well. The writing was good ,yet I felt this could have had  been better if made into a web series /movie rather than a book. There are so many scenes/ moments in the book which could have been more impactful if this had been a film.
Representation: black history/ lgbtq
Two: violence/ gore
Rating: 3.8/5
Was this review helpful?
Alright y'all, time for another review. Today it's Vincent Tirado's Burn Down, Rise Up. Billed as Stranger Things meets Jordan Peele and I feel like that's a pretty accurate description. 

Our main character Raquel lives with her mom who is a nurse in a local hospital. Her best friend Aaron is a quiet guy, to the point of it being annoying to her, and they're highschoolers who have been given a history assignment. All pretty standard stuff. 
That and an argument between Raquel and Aaron. It was...contrived almost? He's got no ability to tell she's not interested in, who she is interested in, makes all kinds of assumptions. It was annoying and I rolled my eyes at it. 

At least until it comes out that Charlize, the girl she used to be really close with, has lost her cousin Cisco. He's gone missing. And he's not the first. 

The first were white kids and they couldn't find them. Now when the Black and Brown kids go missing, people don't lump them together, don't want to say it's all related. 

Raquel is just trying to go through life until she finds out her mother is ill and in a coma. She ends up living with her father, her parents are split, and that's when things kick off. 

This story is fast paced. And for the most part, that doesn't hinder it. It handles the pacing pretty well with character development and the story itself. 

I liked it, it was believable, fun, dark, tense. And relatable. There were passages that had me cracking up  because of the difference between how Black people handle spooky hauntings, monsters, etc., versus how white people handle it. Rarely does a book actually make me laugh out loud. 

What I think faltered was the development of the romance. When it came to that, I don't know anyone who could be so obtuse when dealing with someone who likes them. It wasn't the greatest handled in my opinion and I was a little thrown off by it. 

That and an argument between Raquel and Aaron. It was...contrived almost? He's got no ability to tell she's not interested in, who she is interested in, makes all kinds of assumptions. It was annoying and I rolled my eyes at it. 

I think the ending also sort of suffered from the pacing. Because it was so fast, some things were a little tricky to follow and so it got a little convoluted. And with that, things happened in ways that didn't make sense. It felt like the characters were stunted at that point. There was also something that happened at the end of the book that was out of nowhere. It was literally in the last few pages and threw me because it came out of nowhere and I don't think it added anything. 

I think for me, it was a three (3) out of five (5) stars. I enjoyed it. 

I received this eARC from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. Thanks to them and the publisher.
Was this review helpful?
I apologize for how long this took me to read. I would pick it up, then get overwhelmed by everything that was happening that I would have to put it down. I guess I would consider this a paranormal thriller. Oh, and it's sapphic. 
I couldn't begin to explain the paranormal bits, but I definitely felt all of Raquel's anxiety. I definitely didn't a good chunk of this in confusion. But again, that was mainly because of all the information being thrown at me. I've only rated this a 3, cause while I did enjoy it, I don't see myself reading it again.
Was this review helpful?
Thanks to NetGalley for the ARC and to Sourcebooks publishing for the hard copy of this title. 

As soon as I saw this book cover at TLA, I wanted to know more about this title. Then when I learned there was another dimension involved, I knew I had to read it. Set in the Bronx, Burn Down, Rise Up is a mystery/horror with a bit of history (1970's), a love triangle, and fierce friendships.
People are disappearing. They had been playing a mysterious game/challenge that takes place at 3am in the subway. The game only has 3 rules, but you must NOT break the rules.  When Raquel's mom comes down with a strange sickness and Charlize' cousin disappears the girls team up to find out what is happening and try to save their loved ones. 
The loves tory is sweet, the family dynamic is relatable and the monsters are creepy. I will definitely recommend this one to my students.
Was this review helpful?