The Stuttering Tattoo by Greg Logsted
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
This was a lot better then I thought it would be. Lots of great action! And anyone who knows me knows I'm a sucker for a book told in an Teenage Boy's POV :)
The book starts off with Steven Bishop in Algebra class. He's daydreaming as usual, when the substitue teacher calls on him. He doesn't know what they're talking about, doesnt' care.
Everyone knows he's the kid that doesn't talk much anyways. A couple of years ago, his stuttering was really bad. It's gotten a lot better now, but he still has trouble every now and then. So he doesn't even try most of the time. He makes up for it though with his looks. Everyone knows not to mess with him. He's tall, and built.
His best friend Carlos and him do odd jobs all the time, and it's a lot of physical labor.
So being called in class by the teacher didn't have him worried, but he still didn't want to answer her.
Just as the teacher tells him to answer her question or to go to the office, he stands up to grab his backpack.. it wont do any good to try to answer a question he didn't know.
Saved by the new student though. In "Glides" the new girl. almost like she's floating. And Steven can't keep his eyes off her.
When class is over, he follows her, only she doesn't go to her next class, she goes out to the parking lot. He follows her and sees her take a knife out of her pocket and slash the tires on one of the cars in the teacher's lounge. Then she goes back to the school
What was up with that?
After school is over, Steven picks up his motorcycle and heads on over to the coffee shop where he goes every day.. he doesn't know why he loves coffee so much. must be in his genes since his father is a cop and all.
Just as he pulls into the coffee shop, Becky, the new student walks out. He tries to look busy so she doesn't think he's staring at her. but she notices him.
He gives her a ride home. Acting a little fast, once they arrive at her house, he pulls her into a tight hug. When she notices her dog hasn't come out to greet them. She starts to get a little worried.
So together they walk to her backyard where they find the dog over in the corner of the yard chewing on something.
As they approach, it's more and more obvious what the dog was chewing on... An arm! With bright red long fingernails and a female's ring with a heart and the number 37 clearly marked on the ring.
Becky turns and starts to throw up. Being the tough guy Steven is, he keeps approaching the dog and tries to shoo it away from the arm. He calls his dad at the station and takes Becky into the house to wait it out.
Freaked out and unable to get it out of his mind, he can't sleep that night.
Next day is Saturday and Steven gets up to go to work with Carlos.
When he finishes that night he gets home and checks in with his dad. Then he gets a phone call from Becky asking if he's going to be at the Ancient Mariner (A bar) to watch her band (The Gambit Queen)play. He says he'll be there.
When he gets there, he's carded, of course he has a fake ID - he looks like he's in college, so he can get into anywhere.
He walks in the bar, gets himself a beer, just as he notices his Coach from school. They go outside while Coach has a smoke and they talk about the arm Steven found. Small town, word gets around.
When Steven explains what the ring looked like, Coach says he remembers something about the 37, but couldn't recall. So Steven gave him his phone number and told him to call him if he remembers anything.
Becky comes up to him and they talk a little bit. She doesn't want to be in a bad mood so they keep the conversation light. The owner of the bar shows up and she calls him over. He likes Becky and treats her well. And he seems to be a nice guy when he's introduced to Steven.
Becky's cousin Sam shows up - Becky gets a little pale in the face and her mood turns sour. She doesn't want to talk to him, but she walks off and has a private conversation with him anyways. Steven watches closely as Becky refuses whatever Sam is whispering to her. Sam gets her point across for whatever reason and Becky returns to Steven.
He starts to ask her what that was about, but Becky doesn't want to talk about it. So she goes to get ready to start her session and Steven goes off to find a table to watch.
After a little while, Steven starts to feel funny. He realizes he's been drugged.
Not sure how, but he woke up in a strange place. Carlos.. seems Steven realized he was drugged and called him.
Luckily Steven's dad was out late playing poker and lost track of time. Ended up staying at his friend's house instead of coming home.
So Steven went home and fell back to sleep with visions of the previous night blinking in and out.
Monday at school Becky wasn't there.. The night before they were up late chatting on the computer. She made him promise to meet her out front of the school.. and she didn't show up.. Something was wrong. He could feel it.
She wouldn't answer her phone, next day, nothing again.. after 3 days, he finally decided to go to her house.
That's where he met her dad...
Freaky guy he was :)
I loved this story - way cute change of pace from what I usually read.
I loved his sense of humor. Loved how everyone kept telling him he was full of crap and he still didn't care what everyone else thought. He knew what he knew.