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Scorpions

3.79 of 5 stars 3.79  ·  rating details  ·  1,631 ratings  ·  295 reviews

Bad Trouble

Lately everybody's messing with Jamal. His teachers, the kids at school, even his dad. And now that Jamal's brother Randy's in the slam, Crazy Mack has a crazy idea. He wants Jamal to take control of the Scorpions and run crack.

All the gang jive—Jamal has no use for it. Unless, like some say, it's the only way to cop the bread for Randy's appeal...

The story of

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Library Binding, 216 pages
Published April 1st 1990 by Turtleback Books (first published June 20th 1988)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 2,637)
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Laura
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Lanier
Jul 26, 2008 Lanier rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Nathaniel
"In a moment that passed so quickly that it was almost a memory before it happened, Tito had turned and run back to the cab."

It wasn't until re-reading a few sections over again, over the phone with this young student's summer reader, that Myers hits you. If you read too quickly you miss some great moments from his seemingly subconscious rhyming within several different characters' dialogues. He perfects this in later novels, but it is still amazing how these little gems help construct their col
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Xavier Tanner
Jamal Hicks, the main character, is pressured to become leader of the Scorpions gang because his older brother who is 17 was the leader. His brother wanted someone to take that place while he was in jail because he held up a delicatessen and shot a person there. Jamal didn't like a boy name Dwayne, a kid who picks on him, but one time he tried to pick on him but he would not pick on him because he had a gun. Jamal gains a new level of respect from his enemies, but in a bad way. Jamal also worrie ...more
Sammy
Scorpions is about a boy, Jamal that becomes the leader of a dangerous gang in order to raise money to buy a lawyer for his brother. Jamal’s brother Randy was once the leader, until he was arrested for killing a man. Jamal’s family has no idea about him leading this gang, but his younger sister Sassy finds out once she sees that Jamal has a gun hidden. The guys in the gang aren’t okay with their new member, but once Jamal wants out, they don’t make it easy for him. The setting takes place in Ha ...more
Rayne_T
Scorpions was a book about a boy named Jamal who lives in Harlem, New York who lives with his mom and his younger sister. Everybody is getting on Jamal about his school work and bullying him. His dad ,his principal and this bully at school. Jamal also has an older brother names Randy and he is in jail. His mom works hard hours to try to get Randy out of jail. Since his brothers in jail Randy sends message to Jamal asking him to take his place in this gang he is in . Jamal joins the gang and one ...more
Matthew Martinez
Why did i pick this book? well because it looked like a good book to read so i decided to read the back of the book to see what it was about abd sure enough i checked it out. It looked like a book that i would want to read or could read and mainly because i had to pick a book for my project.

The book was really good because it really relates to what is happening on the streets today because kids are having to make life changing actions in a split second and having to deal with a bullys. That co
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Sherry Ou Yang
Jamal, joins a gang called the Scorpions after his brother tells him that he is now the leader. Jamal, thinking he now has all this authority and power begins to gain confidence and starts doing things he would have never done before. It isn't until he kills someone and that his best friend, Tito takes the blame for him that he realizes his mistake. Jamal wishes he can take everything back, but he can't. He lost the best friendship that he could ever have and regrets it dearly.

Scorpions is an a
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Alfonso Padron

""That ain't nothing but a cap pistol," Dwayne said. The Scorpions don't have no fake guns,' Jamal said. "You ain't no Scorpion." "I'm the leader of the Scorpions."" Scorpions by Walter Dean Myers is a very good book of a boy named Jamal that has to deal with the Scorpions, Dwayne and the fact that his brother is in prison.

This book display's a boy who lives with his mama and sister Sassy. Jamal' also has a brother which went to prison because he was the leader of the Scorpions and took the bl
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Angel Torres
Myers purpose in writing his book, Scorpions, is to make the audience aware of the causes that can happen in different situations. By that I mean that he used characters in certain situations that involved actions that can be considered as crimes. For instance when the speaker was talking to the boy Tito, he had shouted out that he raped a girl and she replied with a “so what” because she had no idea what that meant. The speaker, Jamal, was no older than 13 and Tito was no older than 13. So to m ...more
Christian Emmanuel
The book was different from the usual Newbery books that I have read. Mostly because it deals with violence, crime, drugs and being in a gang.The book tends to get boring and it took me a while to read it always having to pause. Jamal seems like he is innately good and he tries to do the right things but there are so many factors (environmental,financial, racial, family dynamics) that go against him. He becomes caught up in activity of the gang because his brother Randy used to be the leader of ...more
Jose Pena
I recently read “ Scorpions” by Walter Dean Myers. The book is about is about how Jamal becomes the leader of a dangerous gang in order to raise money to buy a lawyer for his brother. Randy’s mom work hard hours to try to get Randy out of jail. Jamal point the gun at Dwayne but then Billy came in and then Jamal started kicking Dwayne. “Jamal kicked Dwayne on his leg. Once, twice, harder and harder”.
The setting takes place Harlem that's where they run try their drug dealing. The main character is
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Qazi
this book is really good it about a boy and his friend who face challenges as they try to take over a gang that their brother started they meet these 3 guys that will let them be in the gang. but the rising action is as they try to lead the gang these 2 guys follow them to the park and try to kill them but one of the guys die and the to friend spit apart do to the accident that happened in the park that night. at the end they unite but not for long.
7703Emil
Great plot and book written by Walter Dean Myers, now one of my favorite authors. The Scorpions kept me flipping pages while reading about Jamal Hicks life and his brother Randy, who went to jail on account of murdering someone. The end is very unexpected, and I recommend this book to anyone who likes Walter Dean Myers and whoever knows about street life.
Im33zy
This book right here is an Im33zY classic i will never forget this book! this book right here is about a brother who joins a gang because his brother is in prison and his brother told him not join in it and he did anyway and now he was forced to be the leader and is changing his life into a monster. it's a good book with a lot of drama!
Victoria Mcarthur
Jamal, a young boy living in the slums is faced with a major dilemma. Everyone, including his teachers, other students, and even father are giving him a hard time. Nothing he does seems to be right and even with his good intentions he often has a run of bad luck. His brother is the leader of a gang called Scorpions. Crazy Mack confronts Jamal and is trying to talk him into becoming the leader and selling crack on the streets. Jamal's morals and friendships are tested in this realistic fiction st ...more
Jonathan
Scorpions by Walter Dean Myers is a look into friendship and Loyalty, and how far some is welling to go to help the ones they love.


The Scorpions is a tough Harlem gang, and Jamal Hicks is about to become involved in this gang from the sins of his older brother. Pushed to his limits by a bully named Dwayne , and being told everyday by his principle Mr. Davidson that he won't amount to anything and will only end up dead or in a prison , Jamal is having a difficult time staying in school, and stayi
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Tiyana
In Scorpions by Walter Dean Myers, Jamal, which is the narrator of the story, tells an eye opening tale about his interesting life. After Jamal's brother Randy is sent to jail, problems for Jamal get bad, making his life more difficult then ever. He's bothered by the kids in school, his family is struggling at home, his mother is stressed out, his teachers won't leave him alone, and his brother's gang wants Jamal to take over his brother's spot as leader of the Scorpions. The only person who kee ...more
Verónica Belandria
“Esos instantes habían transcurrido tan rápidamente que eran casi un recuerdo antes de suceder."

Jamal es un niño tan humilde y se siente tan diminuto en el mundo que querrás ayudarlo y protegerlo. Todos lo tratan mal desde sus profesores hasta sus compañeros aunque afortunadamente su familia y Tito, su mejor amigo, siempre están ahí para él.

Jamal y Tito comparten una hermosa amistad que es fuerte y casi indestructible. Son adolescentes y por cosas del destino se meten en problemas que ponen a pr
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Asya
Actual Rating is a 3.5

One of the toughest parts of writing for teens and young adults is capturing the language and moods and atmosphere of being a kid. And the highlight of this book was just how well Myers captured the "culture" of twelve. The dialog was authentic without having to lean on slang too heavily and the general attitudes of Jamal and Tito rang very true. As did their friendship which was the heart and backbone of the story. This is the kind of book that will get reluctant readers t
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Penny Ziegler
Best Book ~ Realistic Fiction

VOYA Book Review Codes ~ Quality 3Q; Popularity 4P; Grade Level Interest J, S

Developmental Assets: 12,28,32

This is a fast paced book dealing with family, friendship, diversity, high school and prison all intertwined with a gang - the Scorpions. The main character, Jamal, faces decisions regarding good vs. evil at every turn in this book. Despite the pressure to head the Scorpions until his older brother's release from prison, Jamal decides it is not worth the price h
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Mateo
This book is about a kid that has a lot of problems in his family. It takes place in harlem and it seems like it is in the 90's. His brother Darry is in jail, school is not going good, and his family are kind of poor. The biggest conflict in this book is that now 12 year-old Jamal has take his brothers place in the Scorpions gang, and the others in the gang don't want a kid to be their new leader. Through out this book Jamal has solve his problems with his best friend Tito.
I can relate to Jama
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Mark Flowers
When Jamal’s brother Randy is sent to prison for murder, Randy’s friend Mack asks Jamal to take Randy’s place as leader of the Scorpions gang. Only twelve, Jamal is conflicted: he’s seen the bad things that happened to his brother, but he knows what it is like to be weak, as he is bullied at school, and senses the power and security that come from being in a gang, and holding a gun. Now, he must decide whether to give in to that power, or to stay true to the values of his mother, his sister, and ...more
Osvaldo
This book was one of my favorites although i read it already i read it once again. To me the book was about how two best friends find themselves in a case of need because of money. This leads them to do stuff a child should never do but because they are in need they do it. Although Jamal and his best friend do bad things this makes them even more closer because they even get to the point where he saves Jamal's life in a tight situation.
Jamal has a brother and he goes to jail because he was bl
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Adriana
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Carrie Lawler
Scorpians is another well-written book by Walter Dean Myers. Myers tells the story of Jamal, a boy that is a few decisions away from altering his life forever. Jamal lives in Harlem with his mom and his sister, Sassy. His world has been turned upside down when his older brother is sent to prison. Now Jamal has to be the “man of the house”- a responsibility that lingers on top of his saddened mother, poverty, and problems at school.

Then, Jamal is approached by Mack, one of his brother’s gang bud
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Ladon Stephney
The book scorpions is about a boy named Jamal who faces alot of challenges in his life. One of the challenges is that this boy always wants to fight him, and Jamal never wants to fight him because he is not that kind of kid. Another challenge he faces is that he thinks his mom works to hard. He doesnt want her to work that hard but she says she has to if she wants to get her brother out of jail. The last challenge he faces is a big one. He has trouble with this gang called the scorpions. They al ...more
Kalonji
The Scorpions are a dangerous Harlem gang, and Jamal Hicks is about to become tragically involved with them in this authentic tale of the sacrifice of innocence in the inner city. Pushed by the bully, Dwayne, to fight, and nagged by the principal, Mr. Davidson, Jamal is having a difficult time staying in school. His home life is not much better, with his mother working her fingers to the bone to try to earn the money for an appeal for Jamal's older brother, Randy, who is in jail. The leader of t ...more
Gretchen
Scorpions by Walter Dean Myers is a novel geared toward middle schoolers, probably. I read it for my adolescent literature class and I was pretty much the only person in the 30 person class who liked it. The novel focuses on Jamal, a black preteen, and his encounters with the gang members of his brother’s gang the Scorpions. Jamal is trying to get his brother out of jail, protect his friends and family, and maintain the status quo.

I really liked this book. I thought Jamal was a great protagonist
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Charles Mournet
Walter Dean Myers did a wonderful job of showing the hardships that Jamal faced throughout the story. It all started with Randy getting locked up and when Randy got locked up it seemed Randy's life became Jamal's. Jamal was never a good student but he most definitely was a worse one after Randy got sent to jail. It all started with The Scorpions, one member who was friends with Randy simply handed Jamal a gun, the same gun that got Jamal in trouble at school and that Tito, Jamal's best friend us ...more
Hunter
This book revolves around a main character (Jamal) who must deal with a local gang that wants to recruit him. Life is difficult for Jamal because his brother is in jail, and his mother is a single parent who has to work very hard to support the family. He knows that its dangerous to join a gang, but he may not have a choice because they would offer him protection. Plus his brother was a member of the same gang, so he feels that he has a family association with the gang.

I liked this book because
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13291
pseudonyms:
Stacie Williams
Stacie Johnson

Walter Dean Myers was born on August 12, 1937 in Martinsburg, West Virginia but moved to Harlem with his foster parents at age three. He was brought up and went to public school there. He attended Stuyvesant High School until the age of seventeen when he joined the army.

After serving four years in the army, he worked at various jobs and earned a BA from Empi
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“It's a hard life sometimes and the biggest temptation is to let how hard it is be an excuse to weaken” 43 likes
“Sometimes when things get hard, we tend to set our sights on what's hard, that difficult thing that keeps us upset, and we turn our back on our strengths. ” 29 likes
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