About Yummy, by Greg Neri
Eleven-year-old Roger is trying to make sense of his classmate Robert “Yummy” Sandifer’s death, but first he has to make sense of Yummy’s life. Yummy could be as tough as a pit bull sometimes. Other times he was as sweet as the sugary treats he loved to eat. Was Yummy some sort of monster, or just another kid?
As Roger searches for the truth, he finds more and more questions. How did Yummy end up in so much trouble? Did he really kill someone? And why do all the answers seem to lead back to a gang—the same gang Roger’s older brother belongs to?
Yummy: The Last Days of a Southside Shorty is a compelling dramatization based on events that occurred in Chicago in 1994. This gritty exploration of youth gang life will force readers to question their own understandings of good and bad, right and wrong.
What the critics are saying about YUMMY:
“A haunting, ripped-from-the-headlines account of youth gang violence in Chicago provides the backdrop for a crucial mediation on right and wrong. A much-needed look at the terrifying perils of life on the margins that will have all readers pondering the heady question of moral responsibility.” –KIRKUS (starred review)
“A harrowing portrait… Yummy will earn both the reader’s livid rage and deep sympathy, even as the social structure that created him is cast, once again, as America’s undeniable shame. This is a graphic novel that pushes an unsightly but hard to ignore socio-political truth out into the open.” –Booklist (starred review)
“Yummy [is] something entirely new. Gritty, real, willing to ask tough questions, and willing to trust that young readers will be able to reach their own conclusions. This is a story that needs to be told and it needs to be told to kids. Believe me, you’ve nothing like this in your collection. Better get it while you can.” — School Library Journal
“Neri’s straightforward, unadorned prose is the perfect complement to DuBurke’s stark black-and-white inks; great slabs of shadow and masterfully rendered faces breathe real, tragic life into the players. In the end readers are left with troubling questions and, perhaps, one powerful answer: that they can choose to do everything in their power to ensure that no one shares Yummy’s terrible fate.” –Publishers Weekly