Caitlin Sweeney's Reviews > Yummy: The Last Days of a Southside Shorty

Yummy by G. Neri
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Mar 05, 12

Read in March, 2012

Text summary: An eleven year old boy, Roger, on the south side of Chicago tells his side of the story about his young friend Yummy who was involved in a shooting of an innocent girl. Based on a true story that occurred in 1994, this book gives readers a good insight into the internal workings of gangs and the emotions young people go through just to get by each day.

Visual summary: Drawings put a reader’s mind into the story with the captivating facial expressions and realistic characters. Lots of ink is used throughout the story, making the pages just as dark as the story line. Some pages are broken up into nine scenes and other pages are consumed by one illustration. The text does not infringe upon the illustrations but Roger has a different handwriting to differentiate between narration and conversation. The story is guided by the pictures and the realistic sketching of their faces could replace words entirely.

Critique: I had never read a graphic novel before because I am not much of a comic book lover but this book amazed me. The text is written just as it would be said so it is like the characters are actually talking so it is 10 times easier to feel in touch with the book. With its mature content and grave ending, this may not be a good choice for young readers but young adults could appreciate the message.The gang life is completely different than in City of Orphans so readers of both books understand the differences between an outsider’s point of view and that of an insider. Getting more than one perspective of a culture such as gangs makes for a well-balanced reader.
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