In August of 1994, 11-year-old Robert “Yummy” Sandifer—nicknamed for his love of sweets—fired a gun at a group of rival gangmembers, accidentally killing a neighborhood girl, Shavon Dean. Police searched Chicago’s southside for three days before finding Yummy dead in a railway tunnel, killed by members of the drug gang he’d sought to impress. The story made such an impact that Yummy appeared on the cover of Time magazine, drawing national attention to the problems of inner city youth in America.Neri also talks about "How Yummy Came About." He concludes:
My hope is that Yummy will find its way into classrooms, libraries and into the hands of reluctant readers. This is a story that needs to be talked about and I hope that Yummy is just the starting point for a deeper, more meaningful discussion with young people all over this country.Conclusion from the Cybils website:
Although you know the ending of the book from the beginning, Neri still packs a punch that leaves the reader thinking for days, once the book has been put down. Yummy is a historical story with a timeless sensibility that will take your breath away.By the way, Yummy was nominated by fellow Utah book blogger Natasha of Maw Books Blog.
My personal response: Heart-breaking and thought-provoking, with a great message for young people, especially those in high-risk situations. Definitely worth a read!