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Growing Up Bronx

Next Stop by Ivan Sanchez

As I sit on this subway car, I wonder how I can explain this experience, yes I called it an experience, this book was much more than just a book. It was an experience, the life experience of author Ivan Sanchez. The life experience of many a young Latino growing up in the Bronx.

I struggle with putting this to words, there was so much emotion in this read. The entire time I was reading this book I was rooting for Ivan and his friends.  When one of them was killed or jailed, I experienced deep sadness and disappointment. The book was definitely an emotional roller coaster for me. I laughed at times, felt teary eyed at others, I experienced fear and suspense, anger and hatred, this read was totally an emotional roller coaster.

Perhaps it will make more sense to you if you know my history. I  grew up in the Bronx, I knew the area where most of this story took place. Though if you were smart you’d also know to avoid it at all costs, especially Creston Ave. I can only recall passing by Creston once or twice. I usually stayed on the Grand Concourse if passing by, walking through those inner blocks was always a risk to your safety.

After reading this book I feel like I personally know author Ivan Sanchez. I feel like he was one of my homeboys growing up, and I’m glad he’s still around to tell this amazing tale. I’ve never met Ivan, but one cannot help but feel connected to him and his friends after reading this book. We have spoken on the phone, and he has been a guest on my talk show “The Hidden Report,” but we have yet to meet and kick it in person! Dale Ivan, vamos a jangear mi pana! Take a trip to NYC bro!

If you want to take a look at what life was like for some of us Latinos growing up in the Bronx, pick up this book, it’s an amazing tale. Shoutout to Ivan Sanchez, for making it out of that life, and for being a real father. Respect. Rest in Peace to all the men and women who lost their lives back then. From personal experience I can say that the victim isn’t the only victim, peace and light to those left behind.

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