Graphic novelist and National Ambassador for Young People's Literature Gene Luen Yang believes in the power of literature to expand our world through empathy and imagination.Through his platform, “Reading Without Walls,” Yang encourages readers to pick up books outside their comfort zone — featuring characters different from themselves. As a writer, he also pushes himself to imagine lives and stories outside his own experience.
I think fiction can both reinforce our own sense of self and also help us be empathetic to other people and help us deal with those differences. There is a balance there, and a reading habit—a diet of books that includes both books about who we are and books about who other people are—is a great way of managing that knowledge. (Education Week)