Friday, July 8, 2011

Book Review: A Scary Scene in a Scary Movie by Matt Blackstone

A Scary Scene in a Scary MovieA Scary Scene in a Scary Movie by Matt Blackstone
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Publish Date: July 5, 2011
Hardcover, 256 pages
ISBN: 978-0374364212
Young Adult, Fiction

My Review:
Rene is different, he is OCD and he knows he is.  He has a fascination with Batman and superheroes and stays away from all things dealing with the number 13.  He knows that other kids find him strange, but he is strangely comfortable in his own skin.  Except there are always those few kids that make life miserable for kids like Rene.  That kid is Johnny van Slyke.  But one day after meeting Gio and becoming friends with him (or as close to friends as anyone has been with Rene) Rene stands up to Johnny and then Rene's life is turned upside down and that's when Rene really learns about life, how to live and who the true superheroes are.

I loved this book.  Rene is different.  I have never had much dealings with people with OCD but I believe Mr. Blackstone has done his research.  He does not paint Rene as a freak or anything of the sort, he just has orders and beliefs and ways of doing things.  We all do, just not to the extent that Rene does.  I also like Gio.  Gio seems cool and befriends Rene, but has problems of his own and through Rene light is shed on his problems.  The book is deep but reads as a fun read.  I really enjoyed being in Rene's head from the beginning of the book until the end and seeing him grow and change and not change too.  It was a really fun ride and this is a book I will definitely encourage my son to read when he is just a little bit older.  A Scary Scene in a Scary Movie was definitely a great read!

My Rating:  4.0/5.0

On the parenting level:  there is a little bit of bad language, nothing too out of place or too bad, no sex or real mention of anything beyond kissing.  Rene is 14 and immature 14.  There is one amusing scene that I won't go into detail, but if you son is 12 or older it won't kill your son to read I promise! (you can email me at crystalfulcher(at) if you need to know what it was about)

About the Book:
Fourteen-year-old Rene Fowler, can't pick up a face-down coin, or move a muscle if the time adds up to thirteen (7:42 is bad luck because 7 + 4 + 2 = 13), or wash his body parts in the wrong order. If he does, Rene or someone close to him will get left back in school, break a bone, fall into a coma, contract a deadly virus, and/or die a slow and painful death like someone in a scary scene in scary movie. Or worse.  With a voice that is sarcastic, candid,, hilarious and hopeful, this powerful, debut about a teen with obsessive-compulsive disorder will make your stomach ache with laughter even as it breaks your heart with its honesty.

About the Author:
Matt Blackstone joined Teach for America after graduating from the University of Pennsylvania, and presently teaches high school English in the South Bronx. He lives in New York City with his wife.  This is his first novel

Matt, the author is hosting a giveaway for 10 copies of A Scary Scene in a Scary Movie through Regal Literary, so visit here and enter win:  Giveaway runs through July 31, 2011.

FTC Information: I received this book through The Teen Book Scene to review for the current tour.  I have Amazon links on my review pages but I do not make any money from these because of NC laws.  I put them solely for people to check out the books on a retail site.


LoriStrongin said...

Interesting premise. I'm glad to hear the author doesn't treat the MC's OCD as a running joke, but as a serious condition. Thanks for the rec!


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