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Burn Down, Rise Up

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Stranger Things meets Get Out in this Sapphic Horror debut from nonbinary, Afro-Latine author Vincent Tirado. Mysterious disappearances. An urban legend rumored to be responsible. And one group of teens determined to save their city at any cost. For over a year, the Bronx has been plagued by sudden disappearances that no one can explain. Sixteen-year-old Raquel does her bes Stranger Things meets Get Out in this Sapphic Horror debut from nonbinary, Afro-Latine author Vincent Tirado. Mysterious disappearances. An urban legend rumored to be responsible. And one group of teens determined to save their city at any cost. For over a year, the Bronx has been plagued by sudden disappearances that no one can explain. Sixteen-year-old Raquel does her best to ignore it. After all, the police only look for the white kids. But when her crush Charlize's cousin goes missing, Raquel starts to pay attention—especially when her own mom comes down with a mysterious illness that seems linked to the disappearances. Raquel and Charlize team up to investigate, but they soon discover that everything is tied to a terrifying urban legend called the Echo Game. The game is rumored to trap people in a sinister world underneath the city, and the rules are based on a particularly dark chapter in New York's past. And if the friends want to save their home and everyone they love, they will have to play the game and destroy the evil at its heart—or die trying.


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Stranger Things meets Get Out in this Sapphic Horror debut from nonbinary, Afro-Latine author Vincent Tirado. Mysterious disappearances. An urban legend rumored to be responsible. And one group of teens determined to save their city at any cost. For over a year, the Bronx has been plagued by sudden disappearances that no one can explain. Sixteen-year-old Raquel does her bes Stranger Things meets Get Out in this Sapphic Horror debut from nonbinary, Afro-Latine author Vincent Tirado. Mysterious disappearances. An urban legend rumored to be responsible. And one group of teens determined to save their city at any cost. For over a year, the Bronx has been plagued by sudden disappearances that no one can explain. Sixteen-year-old Raquel does her best to ignore it. After all, the police only look for the white kids. But when her crush Charlize's cousin goes missing, Raquel starts to pay attention—especially when her own mom comes down with a mysterious illness that seems linked to the disappearances. Raquel and Charlize team up to investigate, but they soon discover that everything is tied to a terrifying urban legend called the Echo Game. The game is rumored to trap people in a sinister world underneath the city, and the rules are based on a particularly dark chapter in New York's past. And if the friends want to save their home and everyone they love, they will have to play the game and destroy the evil at its heart—or die trying.

30 review for Burn Down, Rise Up

  1. 4 out of 5

    ash | आश ♥ [superache enthusiast]

    this is basically stranger things x caraval but sapphic :DD um, yeah, my heart is still beating and im definitely gonna get nightmares tonight in the best way possible rtc

  2. 4 out of 5

    Zoraida

    A love letter to the Bronx and suspenseful read!

  3. 5 out of 5

    Natasha Ngan

    Prepared to be thrilled - a creepy, mysterious rollercoaster of a novel that had me hooked from the explosive start. Tirad0 packs both action and heart into this timely story.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Danika at The Lesbrary

    I have to say, although I love the illustration of Raquel, I don't think cover does justice to this being a horror novel. I got sports vibes from it. I didn't notice the little monster claws/legs in the background on first viewing. But this is definitely horror, with some blood and gore, so be prepared for that going in. The Echo game sounds a lot like the sort of creepypasta horror stories that get passed around Reddit and other forums, with just enough specificity to have you questioning whethe I have to say, although I love the illustration of Raquel, I don't think cover does justice to this being a horror novel. I got sports vibes from it. I didn't notice the little monster claws/legs in the background on first viewing. But this is definitely horror, with some blood and gore, so be prepared for that going in. The Echo game sounds a lot like the sort of creepypasta horror stories that get passed around Reddit and other forums, with just enough specificity to have you questioning whether they're real or not. This is being marketed as Stranger Things meets Jordan Peele, which I think is a fair comparison: it definitely has social thriller elements, and it has the weirdness of Stranger Things, but with a little more gore. I did feel like this got a little bit didactic at times, but I think that's a complaint coming from being a 32-year-old reading a YA novel and not necessarily an issue with the book itself. If you want an antiracist sapphic YA social thriller and can stomach some body horror, give this one a try. Content warnings: gore, violence, racism, gun use, police brutality, discussion of cannibalism, fire injuries/burns Full review at the Lesbrary.

  5. 5 out of 5

    brianna

    a horror serve !

  6. 4 out of 5

    MissBecka Gee

    Burn Down, Rise Up releases May 3rd and you should totally put it on your radar. It's advertised as a sapphic horror book with Stranger Things vibes. The marketing team totally nailed this description! Raquel is awesome, and this is interesting, fast paced and totally weird. This was the perfect book for visible lesbian week. Much love to Netgalley, SOURCEBOOKS Fire and Tantor Audio for my DRC. "You don't have to move to live in a better neighbourhood." Burn Down, Rise Up releases May 3rd and you should totally put it on your radar. It's advertised as a sapphic horror book with Stranger Things vibes. The marketing team totally nailed this description! Raquel is awesome, and this is interesting, fast paced and totally weird. This was the perfect book for visible lesbian week. Much love to Netgalley, SOURCEBOOKS Fire and Tantor Audio for my DRC. "You don't have to move to live in a better neighbourhood."

  7. 4 out of 5

    Alaina

    I have received this ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Burn Down, Rise Up was a very interesting but super confusing book. It definitely started off with a mini bang that captured my attention. The little elements of horror throughout the book definitely kept me on the edge of my seat. Unfortunately, I feel like I'm left with a bunch of unanswered questions and that annoys me. As for the characters, I liked them. I really did. The friendships were easy to get along with and wer I have received this ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Burn Down, Rise Up was a very interesting but super confusing book. It definitely started off with a mini bang that captured my attention. The little elements of horror throughout the book definitely kept me on the edge of my seat. Unfortunately, I feel like I'm left with a bunch of unanswered questions and that annoys me. As for the characters, I liked them. I really did. The friendships were easy to get along with and were adorable at times. I just think the romance was okay and had potential to be better. Then again, it is kind of hard to develop something with someone if you aren't exactly with them for most of the book. So, in a weird way, I see why things happened the way they did but I still wanted more. Other than that, the game was completely dark and confusing. I would never volunteer as tribute to play. Like ever. Definitely had its creepy moments that will probably haunt me tonight when I'm asleep. I still wish that we got more information about it because I didn't fully understand why some of what was happening was actually happening. Then again, it could just be me. I'm still happy that I got the chance to jump into this book. I think the Narrator, Julienne Irons, did an amazing job and I look forward to another book written by Vincent in the very near future.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Christene Paula

    Burn Down, Rise Up is a creepy, suspenseful, mysterious and with a bit of supernatural. I really enjoyed reading this book, characters are relatable (I like how the MC grow from start to end), twisty action and adventure of the MC and her friends to save Francisco and Charlize, the real friendship between Raquel and Aaron and their love for the Bronx! As I read (or listen since I got the audiobook) through it, I keep relating it to our society nowadays, It takes one to stand up for the rotten so Burn Down, Rise Up is a creepy, suspenseful, mysterious and with a bit of supernatural. I really enjoyed reading this book, characters are relatable (I like how the MC grow from start to end), twisty action and adventure of the MC and her friends to save Francisco and Charlize, the real friendship between Raquel and Aaron and their love for the Bronx! As I read (or listen since I got the audiobook) through it, I keep relating it to our society nowadays, It takes one to stand up for the rotten society. Stand up to stop issues such as racism, gender discrimination and sexual orientation. We need one like Raquel who represent all to stand up and stop the rotten minds of some. This is such a fast paced book, I sometimes get confused with some details in the story and writing is sometimes flat. But overall, my rating for this book is a 4.0/5. Thank you NetGalley and Publisher for giving me an advance copy for this book! #BurnDownRiseUP #NetGalley https://christenelittlelibrary.blogsp...

  9. 4 out of 5

    charlotte,

    On my blog. Rep: Afro Dominican American sapphic mc, Black sapphic li, Black side characters CWs: gore, violence Galley provided by publisher It would not be an exaggeration to say that me and YA novels, particularly YA debuts, have struggled in recent times. I’ve started to think this is the end of the road for me and YA, and then something like Burn Down, Rise Up comes along. This is a fast-paced and action-packed thrill ride of a book. It throws you into things from page one and doesn’t let up On my blog. Rep: Afro Dominican American sapphic mc, Black sapphic li, Black side characters CWs: gore, violence Galley provided by publisher It would not be an exaggeration to say that me and YA novels, particularly YA debuts, have struggled in recent times. I’ve started to think this is the end of the road for me and YA, and then something like Burn Down, Rise Up comes along. This is a fast-paced and action-packed thrill ride of a book. It throws you into things from page one and doesn’t let up, which, given the premise, is what it needed to do. And it does it so well. There’s the perfect balance of time spent making sure the characters are rounded and sympathetic, building the tension as the characters work out what’s going on, and sending you on a rollercoaster ride in the final act. Let me start with the characters, because this book wouldn’t work with characters who didn’t leap off the page. Luckily, there’s no such issue with Raquel, Charlize and Aaron (and to an extent, Mario and Cisco). It sounds a fairly simplistic point, but I think that a large part of what elevates a book from good to great is in how real the characters feel to you, and these ones feel just that. It also helps then, when you have to deal with their stupidity (looking at you Aaron), if you do like them somewhat. Just like the characters, the situation and world they’re in is fleshed out and detailed. You can easily imagine the Echo, and its Passengers, and I liked that it was well-grounded in the history of the Bronx. I think the idea that people’s collective traumas leave an echo (ha) on the world is a really cool one, and very well-executed here. I also liked the discussion of how Raquel could even overcome the Echo—as it was a product of people’s memories, and so harder to vanquish when those memories wouldn’t be forgotten. If I had any complaints about the book it’s that sometimes it felt a bit rushed in certain scenes. Case in point would be Raquel’s first fight with the Slumlord: it was almost too easy how she overcame him (although subsequent events did sort of explain that) and I needed a little more time spent on it at least. But, like I said, overall this was a great book and one I highly enjoyed. Definitely one I’d recommend picking up in May.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Emma Ann

    A monster-hunting adventure and a love letter to the Bronx. This book was awesome. 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 A monster-hunting adventure and a love letter to the Bronx. This book was awesome. 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. [Thank you Sourcebooks for providing an ARC for review. I’ll be posting a video review soon!]

  11. 5 out of 5

    Janna

    This book made me realize that I do enjoy reading horror novels. I also love learning about history and this book offered so much of that! Sapphic friends to lovers plus an intriguing spooky mystery made this book a wonderful experience. Sometimes the writing style felt a little flat though. But it's still a page turner and definitely worth a read! i post about queer books here: instagram / tiktok /twitter This book made me realize that I do enjoy reading horror novels. I also love learning about history and this book offered so much of that! Sapphic friends to lovers plus an intriguing spooky mystery made this book a wonderful experience. Sometimes the writing style felt a little flat though. But it's still a page turner and definitely worth a read! i post about queer books here: instagram / tiktok /twitter

  12. 5 out of 5

    kate

    A brilliantly suspenseful and creepy read full of heart, thrills and action from start to finish. With a gentle sapphic childhood-friends-to-lovers romance, zombies and explorations of gentrification, racism, racial profiling, collective trauma, this was a multilayered, zombie hunting action/horror and I had so much fun with it. I can't wait to see what's next from Vincent Tirado because I'm already hooked on their stories. Highly recommend the audiobook also! TW: racism, police violence, A brilliantly suspenseful and creepy read full of heart, thrills and action from start to finish. With a gentle sapphic childhood-friends-to-lovers romance, zombies and explorations of gentrification, racism, racial profiling, collective trauma, this was a multilayered, zombie hunting action/horror and I had so much fun with it. I can't wait to see what's next from Vincent Tirado because I'm already hooked on their stories. Highly recommend the audiobook also! TW: racism, police violence,

  13. 4 out of 5

    Jesse Ruth (The best boyfriends are book boyfriends)

    Thank you Netgalley and Publisher for this Arc! I really enjoyed this thrilling read! The book begins with a bang and doesn't slow down. I also loved the sense of community and heart in the Bronx. Especially how this story pointed out some very real world issues. Great romance but unfortunately, some of the dialogues fell a little flat and left me feeling outside of the moment. But, overall, I really liked the story! Out May 3rd! Thank you Netgalley and Publisher for this Arc! I really enjoyed this thrilling read! The book begins with a bang and doesn't slow down. I also loved the sense of community and heart in the Bronx. Especially how this story pointed out some very real world issues. Great romance but unfortunately, some of the dialogues fell a little flat and left me feeling outside of the moment. But, overall, I really liked the story! Out May 3rd!

  14. 4 out of 5

    Lily ❀ (Peeta's version)

    Thank you Netgalley, Vincent Tirado, and Sourcebooks Fire for the eARC! All opinions, thoughts and words are my own. Burn Down, Rise Up follows a sixteen-year-old's journey through the Echo game, which takes place in the Bronx's subways. I enjoyed the setting of the Bronx — the history explored was extremely interesting and was about a time I don't know much about. The culture was also really enlightening — I loved the main character, Raquel's voice. You could really see the author's passion for t Thank you Netgalley, Vincent Tirado, and Sourcebooks Fire for the eARC! All opinions, thoughts and words are my own. Burn Down, Rise Up follows a sixteen-year-old's journey through the Echo game, which takes place in the Bronx's subways. I enjoyed the setting of the Bronx — the history explored was extremely interesting and was about a time I don't know much about. The culture was also really enlightening — I loved the main character, Raquel's voice. You could really see the author's passion for the setting of the story, and it read like a love letter to the Bronx, which I really adored. Despite this, there were some problems with this book I couldn't overlook when rating it. Character decisions weren't based on much evidence and did things without reason. This made me a little frustrated while I read because characters either did things from convenience to the plot or to add more tension between characters (again to add to the plot) but there was no reason for some of these actions to occur. Though I enjoyed the Bronx setting, when it came to the Echo game, I felt the world-building was a little under-developed. However one thing that shone in this book was the family relationships. The way they were developed and explored really made me smile. I did think, though, that the sapphic romance could have been improved -- I wanted more of it! Overall, this was an enjoyable, fast-paced read that will delight younger queer readers. If I were to suggest anything to be improved, I would ask for the world-building of the Echo game to be a little clearer, and to add a little more reasoning behind character's actions.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Amanda at Bookish Brews

    this feels like a YA version of The City We Became on a smaller scale! Bookish Brews | Twitter | Pinterest | Tumblr | Facebook this feels like a YA version of The City We Became on a smaller scale! Bookish Brews | Twitter | Pinterest | Tumblr | Facebook

  16. 5 out of 5

    Kristy

    I seem to be an outlier but this one just didn't work for me. There were potential glimmers of real brilliance, but simplistic writing and lots of plot holes marred it all. Full review to come. I seem to be an outlier but this one just didn't work for me. There were potential glimmers of real brilliance, but simplistic writing and lots of plot holes marred it all. Full review to come.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Celia

    8-24-21 This book is very secretive. <_< I'll let you guys know what I think when I'm finished!! 8-26-21 Holy moly I'd like to thank Edelweiss for solving the mystery behind Firereads' sponsored post on Facebook. What they do is post blurbs about the book with excerpts but sometimes don't include the name of the book, so I've been going out of my mind trying to figure out what book this was. Based on the blurb, I knew it was something I had to have. Edelweiss to the rescue! Now, this book doesn't 8-24-21 This book is very secretive. <_< I'll let you guys know what I think when I'm finished!! 8-26-21 Holy moly I'd like to thank Edelweiss for solving the mystery behind Firereads' sponsored post on Facebook. What they do is post blurbs about the book with excerpts but sometimes don't include the name of the book, so I've been going out of my mind trying to figure out what book this was. Based on the blurb, I knew it was something I had to have. Edelweiss to the rescue! Now, this book doesn't have a cover yet (I'm sure it's going to be fantastic) nor a synopsis on GR so I will post it here for you guys. *Stranger Things meets Jordan Peele in this thrilling and timely debut from a genre-defining new voice in YA For over a year, the Bronx has been plagued by sudden disappearances that no one can explain. Sixteen-year-old Raquel does her best to ignore it. After all, the police only look for the white kids. But when her crush Charlize's cousin goes missing, Raquel starts to pay attention—especially when her own mom comes down with a mysterious illness that seems linked to the disappearances. Raquel and Charlize team up to figure out what exactly is happening in the Bronx. But they soon realize everything is tied to a terrifying urban legend called the Echo Game that's rumored to trap people in a sinister world underneath the city. To save their home and everyone they love, Raquel, Charlize, and their friends will have to play the game and destroy the evil lurking underground—or die trying.* Now, if you're like me and sometimes spend precious time scrolling through subreddits on paranormal and just downright terrifying things, this book will appeal to you. The premise of the book is downright scary, yet it manages to tug at your heartstrings with the bits of friendship, love, and family and the complicated emotions that come with all three. Not only that, but we get a bit of history about the Bronx and its despairing past. Burn Down, Rise Up had me rushing to get into bed at night just so I could turn off the lights and immerse myself in a Silent Hill-ish nightmare. Engrossing, readers will find a delightfully chilling tale that will stay with you for a long time to come.

  18. 5 out of 5

    m

    my first exposure to this book was from watching a tiktok that said fans of stranger things would enjoy reading this. as a huge fan of stranger things myself, i can confirm this is accurate! burn down, rise up follows raquel, a teenager who is living in a community in which people have gone missing for the past year. these strange occurrences don’t stop with just disappearances, and when things happens to people close to home, raquel decides to act and investigate what is going on. she and her c my first exposure to this book was from watching a tiktok that said fans of stranger things would enjoy reading this. as a huge fan of stranger things myself, i can confirm this is accurate! burn down, rise up follows raquel, a teenager who is living in a community in which people have gone missing for the past year. these strange occurrences don’t stop with just disappearances, and when things happens to people close to home, raquel decides to act and investigate what is going on. she and her crush charlize are then thrown into something called the echo game, and in order to save their community, they have no choice but to engage in a journey to burn it all down. i really enjoyed this book. i haven’t read anything else like it, and that really stood out to me. the characters were relatable, and i found myself rooting for them throughout the entire story. the way in which the plot developed was gripping, which motivated me to finish reading. despite not being a huge lover of horror genre within literature, this was really great. there was a rich history that flowed through the pages, and aspects of the story that weren’t the main focus (namely the romance) only enhanced what was already a fantastic tale. i think that lovers of YA books and horror books will really enjoy this one. 3.5/5 stars! thank you so much to netgalley and sourcebooks fire for providing an e-arc in exchange for an honest review.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Aislin

    Burn Down, Rise Up is a really great YA horror novel. It's set in the Bronx and follows a small group of high school students. When the story begins, we learn about some mysterious disappearances that have not yet been solved. There are other weird things happening too; for example, some characters are having vision-like dreams and there's a creepy rot disease spreading through the community. It's hard to explain more without giving spoilers, but I will say that the Stranger Things comparison is Burn Down, Rise Up is a really great YA horror novel. It's set in the Bronx and follows a small group of high school students. When the story begins, we learn about some mysterious disappearances that have not yet been solved. There are other weird things happening too; for example, some characters are having vision-like dreams and there's a creepy rot disease spreading through the community. It's hard to explain more without giving spoilers, but I will say that the Stranger Things comparison is a good one. The mystery and horror elements of this book were entertaining and kept me hooked, but what really made me fall in love with this one was the history and commentary on political and social issues. It addresses issues such as redlining, racism, landlords, and more using horror and monsters as symbols. The way that the past haunts the present in this story is really well done. In addition to the other things I liked, the main characters are sapphic and there's a minor romance plotline (not a big focus). I would highly recommend this to fans of YA horror or thrillers, as it does a great job entertaining the reader (and at some moments, scaring the reader) but it also incorporates history into the story. Thank you to NetGalley for this ARC to read and review honestly!

  20. 5 out of 5

    Mia

    With such a pretty cover, I knew I have to read it. Even tho it wasn’t really a page turner though. I still felt adequately satisfied after reading this . The characters were all very complex and interesting and I definitely check it out if it sounds interesting to you!! ARC kindly provided by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer

    Burn Down, Rise Up by Vincent Tirado is a dark contemporary portal story that takes place in the Bronx. Comparing this book to Stranger Things is definitely a wonderful selling point. I usually don't like when books are compared to others in order to sell more(yes I know this is a selling tactic) as most of the time the book is actually not up to par but THIS BOOK can compare itself all it wants because it was utterly fantastic. The story starts off with a bang. We are following a boy who is rep Burn Down, Rise Up by Vincent Tirado is a dark contemporary portal story that takes place in the Bronx. Comparing this book to Stranger Things is definitely a wonderful selling point. I usually don't like when books are compared to others in order to sell more(yes I know this is a selling tactic) as most of the time the book is actually not up to par but THIS BOOK can compare itself all it wants because it was utterly fantastic. The story starts off with a bang. We are following a boy who is reported missing by his family after he played a "game" with some friends on the subway. This game had specific rules that he ended up violating and he flashes back and forth between this world and an upsidedown world. It was definitely a heart-pounding way to start off the book and that pace was kept up throughout most of the book. My father told me a bit about the Bronx burning in the 70's but this book took that information and turned it into the true horror story that it was. True stories with a monster twist are always the best horror stories, in my opinion. The story touched on so many things, including racism, classism, abuse of people living in poverty, eat the rich, etc. all while having a portal story showing the horrors of humanity. In the end, this was a fantastic debut?(was this a debut cause DAYUM), and I will definitely be looking forward to the author's future works. Overall, I gave the book 4.5/5 stars.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Jay G

    Want to see more bookish things from me? Check out my Youtube channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfer... *I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest review* 3.5/5 Stars After several disappearances in the Bronx, 16-year old Racquel can no longer ignore what is happening when her crush's cousin goes missing. Her mother suddenly falls ill, and the mysterious disease seems to have a link to the disappearances. Charlize and Racquel must work together to beat the Want to see more bookish things from me? Check out my Youtube channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfer... *I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest review* 3.5/5 Stars After several disappearances in the Bronx, 16-year old Racquel can no longer ignore what is happening when her crush's cousin goes missing. Her mother suddenly falls ill, and the mysterious disease seems to have a link to the disappearances. Charlize and Racquel must work together to beat the disturbing urban legend called the Echo Game. This was a pretty interesting concept that I was intrigued to know more about when I read the synopsis. I listened to this on audio and think the narrator did a great job with the overall vibe of the story. The world building and pacing were a bit lack luster at times, but as the story progressed I became more invested in the story and the characters. I wasn't the biggest fan of Racquel, she just rubbed me the wrong way and I think she was pretty selfish, especially when it came to how she treated her best friend. I did enjoy the friendship aspect of this book more than the romance, and was glad the romance took more of a backseat. I also like how this had some historical fiction and supernatural elements thrown in as well, as I was expecting only a horror story, but got so much more.

  23. 5 out of 5

    tappkalina

    dnf at 21%. The first few chapters were good, but after that I failed to connect or to care about any part of the story.

  24. 4 out of 5

    maddie (taylor's version)

    thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for the arc! i really enjoyed this book! it was really fast-paced and filled with action; it rarely slowed down, and when it did, it was still really interesting (though some of the dialogue slowed the novel down a bit). i loved the setting of the bronx, and seeing how the characters interacted both with each other and with the city. overall, ‘burn down, rise up’ was very fascinating, and I thought it was a really well-written ya horror novel; I haven’t r thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for the arc! i really enjoyed this book! it was really fast-paced and filled with action; it rarely slowed down, and when it did, it was still really interesting (though some of the dialogue slowed the novel down a bit). i loved the setting of the bronx, and seeing how the characters interacted both with each other and with the city. overall, ‘burn down, rise up’ was very fascinating, and I thought it was a really well-written ya horror novel; I haven’t read a horror story for a while, so I really enjoyed getting back into the genre!

  25. 5 out of 5

    Sylvs (NOVELty Reads)

    ARC kindly provided by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review This book, described in one word, was twisty. Burn Down, Rise Up is a suspenseful thriller with a supernatural edge. Think Stranger Things but scarier and horror filled. I was kept at the edge of my seat, never knowing where the story was heading and constantly surprised by the endless twists and turns. The build up of suspense and atmosphere was done really well here. There was ambience and aesthetic which made th ARC kindly provided by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review This book, described in one word, was twisty. Burn Down, Rise Up is a suspenseful thriller with a supernatural edge. Think Stranger Things but scarier and horror filled. I was kept at the edge of my seat, never knowing where the story was heading and constantly surprised by the endless twists and turns. The build up of suspense and atmosphere was done really well here. There was ambience and aesthetic which made the Bronx come to life, making the setting of the Echo become more harrowing and spooky. This was really what made the book shine and a definite strength of the Author's. I loved the way the world was created and how you were instantly transported to the Burn Down, Rise Up version of the upside down. From the very start the thriller aspect was prominent. The start was a little bit jumpy if I'm being honest as it begins with an action scene that you're kind of thrown into. After the prologue, it becomes slightly slower in pace and the story is further built up. All of a sudden, everything sort of unravels itself and you're left wondering "where is this book going to go next?" World building and pacing aside, the characters were also really cool to read about and I found myself liking each and every one of them. I liked Raquel even though she did a lot of questionable things to her best friend and to her crush, Charlize. Charlize was a good love interest but as romance wasn't the main focus of the novel, I was glad their relationship was a slow-burn. I think ones of the major subplots that underlined this book was friendships. Raquel and Aaron have been friends for ages and Raquel has been acutely aware of Aaron's love life, his feelings and his emotions not just towards her but towards other people as a whole. So even though Raquel broke his heart in a way, I liked how their friendship endured despite their previous perils. The one negative about this book though was, as I mentioned before, the jumpiness at times. It wasn't just occasionally in the writing pace, it also was in relation to a lot of character motivations and events. I'm really going to try avoiding spoilers here but there was a part in the book where Raquel decided the reason behind so much of the gore of the Echo was to do with one particular horror that had to be stopped. This conclusion I believe was drawn from rediscovering historical events in a flashback sort of way however, I wanted to see how the main character made these connections and decided her actions moving forward. All in all, this book was suspenseful, twisty and a page turner with notes of supernaturalism and historical fiction. I really liked how these elements blended together into one to create a book so focused on the Bronx and the history of the area. I definitely learned a lot of things I never known before thanks to this book and how even through the worst of times, people and community endure. ACTUAL RATING: 3.6 STARS

  26. 5 out of 5

    Bethany Liberto

    Sapphic horror? Sign me up! Very Stranger Things-esque and a thrilling ride. I would have loved to have seen more of the relationship between Raquel and Charlize develop, but I still love them! The book was a little slow to start and things were a bit repetitive, but about halfway through it started getting more action packed and exciting as we follow the characters into the Echo.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Trigger Warning Database

    Trigger & Content Warnings: Racism Misogyny Blood & gore depiction Hospitalisation Burns & scarring Gun violence Police brutality Fire

  28. 4 out of 5

    Chelsea

    I loved this book so much. I don't think that there's a single bad thing about it. I loved the characters and the writing and I was never bored while reading. I loved this book so much. I don't think that there's a single bad thing about it. I loved the characters and the writing and I was never bored while reading.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Aly

    3.5 stars The summary of this book really hit some buzzwords for me, 'urban legend', 'game', and 'mysterious illness'. I love a thriller with horror elements and having it centered around a sapphic relationship sealed the deal for me. I requested this book so fast and was psyched to get approved! The story moves quickly and there are no slow moments here. Raquel quickly gets involved in tracking down information on the Echo Game and how playing could save both her mom and her crushes cousin Franc 3.5 stars The summary of this book really hit some buzzwords for me, 'urban legend', 'game', and 'mysterious illness'. I love a thriller with horror elements and having it centered around a sapphic relationship sealed the deal for me. I requested this book so fast and was psyched to get approved! The story moves quickly and there are no slow moments here. Raquel quickly gets involved in tracking down information on the Echo Game and how playing could save both her mom and her crushes cousin Francisco. I liked the friendship bond between Raquel and Aaron and how far they were willing to go to help the other. A strong bond like that can help you get through even the darkest of times. I did feel like the romance was underdeveloped and relied on past events that we didn't get to see. Plus the girls are separated for a while in the book so there's less time for them to build that relationship on page. I also thought the game was a bit lacking and even calling it a game is kind of misleading. There were cool and creepy parts to it for sure, I just wanted more information and maybe more of a point to the game. The audiobook was good and I thought the narrator embodied Raquel well. I voluntarily read and reviewed this book. All opinions are my own. Thank you to Tantor Audio and NetGalley for the copy.

  30. 4 out of 5

    LGBT Representation in Books

    Trigger Warnings: Gore, violence, racism, homophobia, police violence, gun violence, misogyny, missing family member, sick family member Representation: Lesbian, Black, Afro Dominican American Burn Down, Rise Up is a sapphic horror story about Raquel and her crush, Charlize, who team up to find Charlize’s mysteriously missing cousin. The Bronx has experienced these disappearances for years, but it is often ignored. The two teens have to play the Echo Game in order to try to save the city. This eAR Trigger Warnings: Gore, violence, racism, homophobia, police violence, gun violence, misogyny, missing family member, sick family member Representation: Lesbian, Black, Afro Dominican American Burn Down, Rise Up is a sapphic horror story about Raquel and her crush, Charlize, who team up to find Charlize’s mysteriously missing cousin. The Bronx has experienced these disappearances for years, but it is often ignored. The two teens have to play the Echo Game in order to try to save the city. This eARC was provided by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This was way too scary for me! I am not a fan of horror or thriller but this was a great book! The Echo Game was an interesting concept and very creepy. The story is very fast paced and the characters are absolutely stunning. They feel like people you’ve known your whole life and are very relatable and well developed. This book also spotlighted a neighborhood in the Bronx and included such rich history. It was very interesting to read about a place that I have been to but didn’t know so much about. The story is also completely applicable to today’s society. Raquel is such a strong character who tries to stand up to all of the corruption in her world. I think we all need to be a bit more like her.

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