Next Stop is a more than a memoir. It is as if the reader is taking a look beyond the almost cartoonish expectations of what life is like living in the Bronx into a reality the readers must brace themselves to face. It is a refreshing look at a world many are unfamiliar with yet will find their own personal connections. Even amidst the almost tragic and gut-wrenching truths this book uncovers, the reader will find their own story in the lives of these true-to-life characters. I highly recommend this book to anyone who has the courage to step out of their comfort zone and experience life through the eyes of someone who at first glance you may not expect such sensitivity, passion, eloquence and heart.
NEXT STOP is a fascinating but also sad memoir of life in the Kingsbridge section of the Bronx in from 1978 to the early 1990s. However unlike most memoirs looking back at a "war zone", Ivan Sanchez does not tell much about his escape. Instead he focuses on survival, a sort of social Darwinism in practice. The neighborhood is filled with crime mostly violent from professional arsonists collecting fees for torching buildings so owners can collect insurance to drug wars over who peddles where (fundamental capitalistic supply and demand). To live another day, you needed a crew to provide 360 degrees of protection for one another, but that was no guarantee. Readers will be abhorred at the violence, but more so at the way it is taken for granted as part of living in wild Bronx. Well written with plenty of heart, this is not an easy read for unlike TV this is real life; for this reviewer who grew up in the Bronx and knows the locations like Creston Ave near Fordham Rd it especially hits home.
Wow. This is a riveting, mesmerizing unvarnished look at life in an inner-city slum. I could not put this book down. OK, perhaps one of the reasons I couldn't put it down was because I grew up in the exact same neighborhood 20 years earlier. This book was set in the Kingsbridge section of the Bronx in the late 80s, and I grew up on those same streets in the late 60s. The cycle of poverty, violence, drugs, crime and hopelessness that strangled this once-vibrant neighborhood is illustrated poignantly in this book. For New Yorkers who remember the city during this era, reading this book will be a stroll down memory lane. For everyone else, it is a rare peek into the life of the people who lived and died on those streets.
Next Stop is urban drama at its absolute best. A compelling read - Ivan Sanchez's story is real, raw, funny, emotional, and all too familiar with many young men and women coming of age in inner-city America. An excellent document on the "live fast and die young" generation of the 80s & 90s in what was still a very dangerous and progressively violent urban New York. Next Stop should be required reading not only for school students, but for any teen struggling with family, peer pressure, drugs, gangs, and the many pitfalls and challenges of life in the ghetto.
If you are from anywhere else in the world, You will get an insight into world, NEXT STOP will give you insight on how it was living in the Kingsbridge/Fordham section of the Bronx. Ivan Sanchez has written this book showing true honesty of the trials and tribulations of growing up in the Bronx. This neighborhood was a perfect reflection of the melting pot that is NYC, and the struggles our youth have from going from the Corner to College and becoming a responsible adult. I, too, being born in this wonderful neighborhood of Kingsbridge, that has had many a STAR come from it, can attest to how it was growing up in Kingsbridge. I would highly recommend this purchase. And when you read it, don't read it as a Judge, or an editor, or someone that wants to pass judgement, but let Ivan take you on a part of his journey of his upbringing. I applaud him for being such a positive role model for the youth, and finding a positive sense of direction. All of the roads taken in this book were not leading to a great place, but he has had a chance to add his own piece to the story of redemption. Looking forward to Next Stop 2, and any other books that he writes or is involved in.
I remember Ive and Will from the block mostly from OLR and the Scout,196 and Creston ave was the place to chill in the 90s You could get anything on that block that was the closest thing to organized crime in the hood ,made life long friends on that block Eric went out with my sister Betty for 13 years I love him like a brother Ive did a grate job on this book thank for bring the memory's back putting a smile on my face it was not all bad lots of good times with them guys thank Ive....