In Michael Cart’s book, “Young Adult Literature- from romance to realism he explores the true use of pictures in books It gives readers another outlet to understand information that is on the page than just text. I’ve always had a love for words and how language is put together. I would try to mimic it to sounds just like the authors I would read as a teen. Pictures weren’t the most important part to me and so I mostly ignored them. He also details the beginning of non fiction’s impact on society. Non fiction and picture books are both types of genres that may not seem like the norm, but teens do read them.
However I read my first graphic novel and my perspective changed. Yummy: Last Days of a Southside Shorty is a graphic novel based on an 11 year old’s life written by G. Neri as he tried to make sense of who Yummy is. What drew me the most was the way illustrator was conveying emotion in the faces of the people in the book. It was dark yet real. I found it easy to follow and enjoyed my first experience with a graphic novel.
As a teen my favorite nonfiction book was various works of the Chicken soup for the Soul. I read Chicken Soup for the Teenage Soul and in a sense I just wanted someone out there who could understand me. When Cart points out that young adults read for identification and I believe this is still true today. Non fiction is just an honest capturing of a life event. Sometimes fiction is not enough for readers. Imaginary lives may only frustrate them, but non fiction offers them another kind of life that they can take note from.
Cart, Michael: “The eyes have it-other visual forms: Photo Essays and the New Nonfiction.” In Young adult literature from romance to realism. 179-185, Chicago: ALA, 2010.