A graphic novel based on the life and death of Robert "Yummy" Sandifer, an 11-year-old gang member from Chicago's Southside who was killed by his own gang members.
"In 1994, in the Roseland neighborhood of Chicago's South Side, a 14-year-old girl named Shavon Dean was killed by a stray bullet during a gang shooting. Her killer, Robert 'Yummy' Sandifer, was 11 years old. Neri recounts Yummy's three days on the run from police (and, eventually, his own gang) through the eyes of Roger, a fictional classmate of Yummy's. Roger grapples with the unanswerable questions behind Yummy's situation, with the whys and hows of a failed system, a crime-riddled neighborhood, and a neglected community. How could a smiling boy, who carried a teddy bear and got his nickname from his love of sweets, also be an arsonist, an extortionist, a murderer? Yet as Roger mulls reasons, from absentee parenting to the allure of gang membership, our picture of Yummy only becomes more obscure. 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. Like Roger, 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. (Aug.)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright PWyxz LLC)
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