Way Home

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Libby Hathorn’s book Way Home focuses on Shane, a street kid who stumbles upon a cat that he adopts and cares for like a real person. The little amount of words in the book gives you the main storyline, but it is Gregory Roger’s pictures that steal the show. The pictures show exactly what the author is trying to portray, allowing for many themes and motifs to be introduced through the pictures, giving the story a second dimension.

The first page of the story is a particularly good example of pictures emphasizing words. Hathorn sets the scene in mid-action with Shane chasing the scared cat, which he catches and cares for. The majority of the text is descriptive, either describing the situation or the cat's anger. Some poetic techniques even make there appearance such as the onomatopoeia in “it growls and then spits”. Although this is a good section of writing, the picture is essential to grasp the real situation. Firstly, the picture shows the setting - night time in a slums of a big city - but when you look at the picture in more detail you notice several features of significance. One feature of importance is the houses. Some of the houses have lights turned on onside, which shine through the window. This light contrasts with the darkness outside, showing how Shane is blocked out from an ordinary life. There are also bars on some windows, which have the same meaning. The second interesting addition to the picture is the posters in the bottom left corner. The four posters are a strong red and they picture demons. It’s suggesting that Shane is trapped in a hellish environment, which basically describes the slums. But the most significant feature in the picture is the poster in the top right, which is a section taken from Michelangelo’s The Creation of Adam. It shows God’s hand reaching out to a human’s, symbolizing the connection between heaven and humans. But this poster is torn, showing that Shane’s connection is incomplete. Without the picture, these symbols...
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