Young Adult Lit/Crit

February 13, 2008

My response to Tyrell

Filed under: "Tyrell" — kariredmond @ 11:28 pm

Like Mandy, and perhaps many of you, I think that Tyrell was my favorite book for this week’s assigned readings.  I will admit that it was difficult at first to pick up on the language and slang used in the novel, but it is a language that I am accustomed to hearing out loud and not written down.  This story broke my heart because I was able to become so attached to Tyrell and his little brother that I really wanted everything to somehow work out for them in the end.  One important aspect of this novel is the idea of peer pressure, and Tyrell (for the most part) set an exemplery example for his younger brother by not caving in and selling drugs with Calvin.  Although he was not the most law-abiding citizen, he was a victim of his environment and society, and was trying to make the end justify the means.  I think a lot of teenagers, regardless of their race, sex, or socio-economic background could really relate to Tyrell and the messages that Coe Booth is trying to send to readers. 



1 Comment »

  1. It looks as though there is a consensus that “Tyrell” is in the top ranks for being the best YA lit book read for class, to date. I must agree with Kari and Mandy. The language came to me as a shock, but it helped me enter the mind and emotions of Tyrell. At first I thought the book should not be considered for an English classroom text set, because of the poor grammar and “street” language. After completing the first few chapters, I realized my mistake and how the language makes the text challenging for students who are from a race and socio-economic level different from Tyrell. This book introduces diversity and can be part of a multicultural text set. The language alone opens the door for a lesson in the spoken language versus the written language.

    Like Kari, I too found myself feeling sorry for Tyrell and his less than desirable life. Young readers can learn from this book that the environment one is raised in influences the activities and decisions he/she makes, and to not pass judgment too quick. Tonight I would like to examine the possible reasons why Booth chose to write “Tyrell” in the language that she used.


    Comment by jexter1 — February 14, 2008 @ 12:22 pm

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