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  • Selisa Loeza

Libro Review: With the Fire on High

Updated: Jan 15, 2021

With the fire on high in her life and kitchen, Emoni begins wondering, what can she cook up for her future?

Title: With the Fire on High

Author: Elizabeth Acevedo

Genre: Young Adult

With the Fire on High is a YA novel full of “duende”- inspiration and power of a girl growing into a woman, with a whole lot of fire in her life.

Many YA’s tell stories of teenage girls going through the emotions and feelings of transitioning from high school to college with the valid feelings of confusion, excitement and fear.

But Acevedo’s storytelling touches upon many of the untold true stories with strong abuelitas raising generations, teen motherhood, living in the hood, dreams of college with fears of affording it, and of course, the smells and tastes from the kitchen teaching life lessons.


Emoni Santiago is a Boricua living in Philly, completing her senior year of high school, while working and providing for her two year old daughter. She’s doing her best to give her Babygirl a good life and contribute to the home her Abuela provides but when a new culinary arts elective opens at school, new doors and possibilities open, including the chance to travel to Spain. Emoni has always loved to cook and mastered the art of creative cooking. She has magic in her touch and an innate skill of mixing spices. When people eat her food, emotions from past memories arise. Yet, she lacks the discipline and knowledge to honor the science of cooking.

With the fire on high in her life and kitchen, Emoni begins wondering, what can she cook up for her own future?

Favorite Quotes

“Be proud of who you are so you don't have to imitate or bow down to your oppressor.
“ can't control how people look at you but you can control how far you pull back your shoulders and how high you lift your chin.”

Feelings While Reading

-Craving of my abuelita

-Wanting to hug my mama thinking of how she raised me as a teen mama

-Snapping my fingers on the truth telling of Christopher Columbus

-Missing my dearest homegirls

-Some major antojitos

-Remembering those young love days


En serio, you need to #read this #book and add it to your #reading list asap. Young adult or not, it will add some heat and inspire you to take some action in life.

Follow me on: Goodreads

Purchase from my: Bookshop

To get the book supporting local Indie bookshops, feel free to order using my link at Bookshop. (Note this is an affiliate link. So instead of giving money to Amazon, you give to local bookstores, authors, a small percentage goes to me and rest to business).

Photo credit and property of: Selisa Loeza

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