Blackstone, Matt A Scary Scene from a Scary Movie, pgs. 248. Farrar Straus Giroux, New York, 2011. $16.99. Language: R - 40 swears, 1 F word;
Mature Content: PG13 - main character has a dream about touching large breasts; Violence: PG - a student biting the main character on the shoulder and then dragging him into the school bathroom.
This is an interesting book, a fast read but somewhat disappointing. Because of the title, I was set to read a mystery or suspense yarn. Not so. This book is about 14 year old Rene, a totally wacked-out, OCD kid. He has to smell his left hand to make sure that he exists. His demeaning, emotionally abusive dad left many years ago but is now trying to get back into Rene and his mom’s life. Because of this, Rene and his newly found and only friend, Giovanni, run away to New York. Rene is so afraid of everything that he keeps comparing his life to a ‘scary scene in a scary movie,’ hence the title. Towards the end of the book, Rene does start to gain some self-respect and to control his obsessive-compulsive behaviors.
This book is supposed to be funny but to me, didn’t read that way. I felt too sorry for friendless Rene and his life to find the book funny. It also didn’t ring true. Rene’s thoughts and actions were so exaggerated because of Matt Blackstone trying to be funny and not accomplishing it, that it was just an okay book for me.
MS/HS – Optional. M.J. Burton, teacher.