Parents' Guide to

With the Fire on High

By Amanda Nojadera, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

Teen mom/chef's inspiring tale shows perseverance, teamwork.

With the Fire on High Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this book.

Community Reviews

age 15+

Based on 1 parent review

age 15+

I'm surprised by Common Sense's sex rating for this book

There's a lot of sexual content in this book. Heavy petting, discussions about virginity, discussion of a lesbian's couple first time sleeping together, etc. along with the account of when the main character loses her virginity. To me, only one star for sex doesn't accurately convey the amount of content. Here's a sample: From page 44.... " When he finally shoved into me, it stung. For a second I wasn't sure if I wanted to push him away or pull him closer, and then he was panting and sweating on my chest and apologizing. And I kept telling him it was okay, thinking he was apologizing for hurting me until I realized he was apologizing because it was over. I never even took off my bra. It didn't even last the entire Weeknd song playing in the background. A bubble of disappointment swelled in my chest and I didn't know if I was holding back laughter, tears, or a feeling I didn't know then how to name. All I could keep thinking was that he definitely didn't have any sweet words or niceness in the moment that I needed it most. I cleaned my own self up, put on my pants, and left. He didn't even say goodbye. "
3 people found this helpful.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (1 ):
Kids say (10 ):

Teens will love the diverse characters, heartwarming relationships, and deliciously rich descriptions of Emoni's dishes in Elizabeth Acevedo's inspiring coming-of-age tale. The gorgeous cover art showcases Emoni's strength, and the quick chapters filled with vibrant details make her story unputdownable. It's clear that Emoni struggles to put herself first, but with supportive family, friends, and mentors by her side, she realizes that she can still be the best mom to her daughter while simultaneously pursuing her passion. Cooking isn't just a way for Emoni to provide for her family. It helps her connect with her past, set the course for her future, and learn the importance of respect, courage, perseverance, and teamwork.

As With the Fire on High progresses and readers experience the sour, savory, and bittersweet moments of Emoni's journey, they'll be inspired to follow their dreams and have faith that they'll succeed.

Book Details

Did we miss something on diversity?

Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate