When We Make It

When We Make It

by

, young-adult, read-in-2021, latinx-reads, bipoc-author, ya-books, arc-s, arcs, young-adult, books-in-verse, body-image, Young Adult, Poetry, Contemporary, Health, Realistic Fiction, Fiction, Historical, New York, Social Issues

An unforgettable, torrential, and hopeful debut young adult novel-in-verse that redefines what it means to "make it,” for readers of Nicholasa Mohr and Elizabeth Acevedo.

Sarai is a first-generation Puerto Rican eighth grader who can see with clarity the truth, pain, and beauty of the world both inside and outside her Bushwick apartment. Together with her older sister Estrella, she navigates the strain of family traumas and the systemic pressures of toxic masculinity and housing insecurity in a rapidly gentrifying Brooklyn. Sarai questions the society around her, her Boricua identity, and the life she lives with determination and an open heart, learning to celebrate herself in a way that she has been denied.

When We Make It is a love letter to anyone who was taught to believe that they would not make it. To those who feel their emotions before they can name them. To those who still may not have all the language but they have their story. Velasquez’ debut novel is sure to leave an indelible mark on all who read it.

Title:When We Make It
ISBN:9780593324486
Format Type:

    When We Make It Reviews

  • Graciella Delgado

    *Thank you, Penguin Teen, for sending an ARC of this book*"We don't talk about being Puerto Rican.We just live it. You know?"I do. I do know.I've read and re-read this book three times now since recei...

  • CW (The Quiet Pond) ?

    When We Make It packs such an emotional punch and I was not prepared. I bookmarked SO many poems because some of them just left me feeling in awe or utterly heartbroken. This was such a splendid debut...

  • Kelly

    Set in 1996, this verse novel follows 13-to-16-year-old Sarai over these hugely pivotal years coming-of-age in Bushwick, Brooklyn. She's Puerto Rican and wants so badly to know about her heritage, as ...

  • Tomes And Textiles

    EXQUISITE. Full review to come....

  • Andy

    Thank you to Penguin Teen & Netgalley for an eARC in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own. When we Make it is a coming of age novel in verse, about young Sarai as she navigates pover...

  • cossette

    content warnings: addiction (drugs), body shaming, child abuse, death, domestic abuse, drug use/abuse, drug overdose, fatphobia, police brutality, teen pregnancy, miscarriage, pregnancy, racism, rape,...

  • Kim

    This book is phenomenal!It has a rhythm and movement outside of poetic meter and pacing.It deeply embedded in the words and in lives that influenced this body of work.I know the lives in this story. I...

  • Azanta

    Elisabet Velasquez knows how to write and she knows how to write powerfully. this book moves fast but not easy to read at times and i recommend reading the TWs before picking this up. this is a novel ...

  • Sharon Velez Diodonet

    "What if making happens every day. To each of us. Differently."Thank you so much to @elisabetvelasquezpoetry for this #ownvoices gem.I finished this one last night and my heart just swells with Bushwi...

  • Martina

    Thank you penguin teen for the gifted book. All thoughts are my own.This book. It was just beautiful. I wasn’t sure what to expect, it’s the first book in verse I’ve read. Elisabet had such a be...