The wait for the author’s follow-up to The Hate U Giveis almost over, and she’s planning to celebrate her new novel On the Come Upwith readers by embarking on a 15-city book tour across North America, EW can announce exclusively. It’ll launch Feb. 6, the day after publication, in New York, where Thomas will be in conversation with Angela Yee, and finish in the author’s hometown of Jackson, Mississippi, at Lemuria Books.
Expectations are high, with The Hate U Give continuing to top the New York Times YA best-seller list and a film adaptation recently premiering to excellent reviews and solid box-office. On the Come Up is Thomas’ ode to hip-hop from the literary world. The synopsis: “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.”
“Bri is trying to get on the brink of making it as a rapper, on the come up in that sense,” Thomas recently teased of the book to EW. “But over the course of the novel, she’s also coming up and growing up as a person. For me, it’s also a coming-of-age story as much as it is a hip-hop story.”