Reading the Book’s Construction and Images

A variety of people live in this neighborhood – a young black woman is in the left hand corner, several people who may be Asian-American are pictured in other yards, and several white children are pictured playing. There are several genders represented as well and two older people are featured cooking on the grill on the right side of the image.  Cross-cultural interactions are occurring, which can be resources for the child’s identity making.

The illustrator’s use of gouache conveys permanence of the place and people. The color green creates a “common ground” shared by the neighbors. The variety of colors and multiple shades of green depict a diversity of gardening practices.

Reading the Book's Construction and Images

The Ugly Vegetables pages 12-13

The Ugly Vegetables. Text and illustrations copyright © 1999 by Grace Lin. Used with permission by Charlesbridge Publishing, Inc.


The use of the double page spread provides a panoramic view of the backyards in this neighborhood.  The fenceless yards communicate is a sense of vastness or spaciousness. The large trees in the background convey a sense of either a rural or suburban setting.   

Back Next

Back to Intro