Title: Made You Look: How Advertising Works and Why You Should Know
Illustrator: Warren Clark
Publisher: Annick Press
Reviewer: Yolanda Ridge
Interest: age 11+
Made You Look is a must-have, survival guide for young people – an advertisers favourite target. From the opening line “Remember the day your parents sat you down to have a serious talk about advertising? Me neither” to the last line, this book is packed with information that will guide kids down the road to becoming a safe, smart consumer.
Divided into six chapters, Made You Look covers everything from ad power to consumer power, defining important terms (like product placement, third person affect, companion power…) and tools (like cookies – not the chocolate chip kind) along the way. To the writer’s credit, it is not anti-advertising propaganda. Both sides of the advertising debate are presented factually allowing
consumers readers to come to their own conclusions. Through questions, quizzes, and activities, Shari Graydon goes beyond the “advertising is bad” mantra and encourages kids to think about how advertising, marketing and promotion affects them as individuals and society as a whole.
Originally published in 2003, this revised version has updated content and a fresh new look – together creating a package that really works. The pictures perfectly complement the text, providing additional information and humour. I love that there are no photos of logos, although some are described (like the nike swoosh) and there is a quiz about famous slogans. I also appreciate how the information is laid out in different ways, particularly the almost comic book like presentation of the history of advertising.
There’s a section at the end titled “Ad Resources” which lists organizations in the United States and Canada that can help readers “exercise your Complaint Power or stay informed about advertising”. This is followed by five pages of notes and references broken down by chapter and a four page index. Made You Look is a well researched, balanced, and up to date book about a topic that deserves more attention than it gets. Highly recommended.