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Scrawl Hardcover – September 14, 2010
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Top Customer Reviews
Shulman writes very well. He gives Tod a believable teenage voice with the accompanying emotions. The only other character that "speaks" is the guidance counselor who supervises Tod's detention, and occasionally responds in writing in his journal.
All other characters in the book are seen through Tod's eyes, and yet the author aptly depicts them as complete individuals.
Although somewhat corny and contrived in spots, with rapid fire twists and turns at the end, the novel wraps up neatly, like a poem, making for a satisfying read. Once begun, it's a book you want to keep reading.
And, oh, yeah, we find out that the school is loaded with bullies besides Tod and his 'droogs'.
This is mostly billed as a YA book, but I would say it's good for grades 5+.
Silly or not, I do have an obligation to tell you about this book and more, I want to. Meet Tod Munn. He's an overweight bully who extorts money from the weaker kids. I loved him and you will too. He's cynical to a degree, but there is a lot of truth to his observations about his school and about the world in general. As with the main character in Amy Reed's Beautiful, you likely won't agree with everything he thinks and says and on some things, you will likely vehemently disagree, but I feel that Tod's viewpoint is challenging and worth considering. Here's an early example:
What else is in the room? There's a cracked brown flower-pot with a dead stick in it. The stick was probably a plant. It's got a red ribbon hanging off it like you would find on the corner of a diploma or if you won the Spelling Bee. The ribbon says "Congratulations," but who the hell knows why? Congratulations, you finally got a low-paying teaching job. Congratulations, you retired and didn't die of boredom teaching the same idiocy to idiots who care less about what's in your mind than what's in your car.Read more ›
Briskly paced, laugh-out-loud funny but also a deep look into how a smart boy comes of age in a desolate home and school, Scrawl is peopled by Tod's characters who are fundamentally different from each other. Luz captures the imagination, with her peremptory but brilliant manner of getting everyone to act in her play. Tod's mom is harsh but kind of funny and *real.* Even the lousy lunch lady slopping meat sauce onto Tod's tray has a point-of-view, and Tod fields them all: the well-meaning school counselor, his "droogs" who, though they are his best friends, are too dumb really to know him, and the English teacher who pretends to be Tod's friend only to . . . . . So much happens in this book! I could go on forever. Instead, I salute Mark Shulman, author of my favorite YA novel. Ever.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
My 12 year old son read to the fourth chapter, and he found the writing style unpleasant to read.Published 18 days ago by Kenneth J Robinson
Nice. Good. Perfect. I need 20 words. I didn't want to do this. La. 6 more. 4. 3. 2. 1.Published 2 months ago by Renay Rodriguez
I loved the ending of this book! Listening to a audio book and reading I really suggest u do! I highly recommend.Published 12 months ago by kenzietri03
While the book is a bit slow in places, the surprise at the end made up for it. I had to read it twice. Rarely does a story catch me off guard. Read morePublished 16 months ago by Dana Poepsel