N. Hart English Honors Sleeping Freshmen Never Lie by David Lubar #7Explain why you think this book will or will not be read 100 years from now. Support your opinion by stating specific events in the story. One hundred years from now I believe this book will be read as it contains most problems faced by incoming freshmen in high school. The book is well written and is fun to read as the main character, Scott Hudson employs literary uses while he writes in his journal to his unborn sibling, who he calls Smelly of his high school experiences.
Every teenager faces problems while in high school and some of them are addressed in this book. The issues that are evident in this book are friendship issues, school issues, family dynamics, transition from childhood to adulthood, and actions have consequences. Friendships made in elementary school or middle school can only last in high school if the friends stay in the same city, their interests remain the same, academic performances are given the same priority, and maturity levels develop at the same rate. Scott’s best friends from middle school are Mitch, Patrick, and Kyle.
Scott wishes that they remain friends forever as he calls them “Three Musketeers. ” Scott is not in the same classes as his friends. He has honors and college prep classes and they all have tech prep classes. Mitch gets a girlfriend and has no time for the others. Patrick moves to Texas and then is relocated to Japan because of his father’s work. Kyle, who others think is tough when actually he broke his nose falling off a rocking horse, stands up for his “bookworm” friend early on in their freshman year but gets on the wrestling team and soon ignores Scott.
Once Kyle joins another group he no longer wants to maintain a friendship with Scott because they have different social status in high school. Scott does make some new friends in high school. An inadvertent friend is Wesley Cobble, a tough senior who in the beginning of school “shakes down” Scott for money. They meet at the school office where Scott went to get a file for his English teacher, Mr. Franka and Wesley was sent because he was in trouble. Wesley asks Scott why he’s at the office and not wanting to lie, Scott responds that he got to the office by “perambulation,” which means walking.
Wesley buys it and thinks Scott is in trouble too. Later that day at lunch, Wesley sits by Scott in the lunchroom. Scott is not sure why Wesley would want to sit by him and tries to figure this out. One morning Scott is waiting for the bus and Wesley drives by and stops asking Scott if he wants a ride to school. Scott gets into Wesley’s car because he is tired of being confronted by the upper classmen and soon they become friends. For teenagers there can be a lot of school problems to deal with. Scott’s first Spanish teacher is actually a French woman. Then he gets an Australian man to teach him Spanish.
He can’t understand these teachers but realizes his other classmates can’t either. Scott’s classes are hard and he gets a lot of homework. As a result, he has to spend hours trying to get the work down and gets little sleep. S becomes a priority for him. Scott’s PE teacher makes them physically work hard. He even makes them do physical activity when it is freezing. Also, upper classmen constantly pick on freshmen. Scott writes, “Keep away from seniors. Keep away from juniors. It’s probably a good idea to avoid sophomores, too, since most of them seem to want revenge for what happened when they were freshmen. Scott’s experiences with upper classmen make him realize that you shouldn’t ask directions because they will send you to the wrong place. While on a school bus they usually hit you in the back of the head so sit behind a tall guy. Don’t carry your books under your arm in a crowded hall because they will knock them out. Older student council members don’t listen to the freshmen so why join. Lastly, while being on crew for the school play, they make you do all work. Everyone’s family dynamics are different but there are always some issues within the family that causes concern.
Scott feels that Bobby, his older brother got the good genes and asks his mom if he was adopted because he is not good with tools. Scott soon realizes that Bobby is struggling to find his own place in the world. Also that Bobby can hardly read and that is why he became so outgoing and got into trouble a lot in high school. They were hiding Bobby’s real problem. Scott also is watching his parents deal with the approaching birth of their third child and is worried that the baby will change things and his parents will not have time for him.
The transition from childhood to adulthood is done by everyone is it is called maturing. Scott knows that Kyle is ignoring him but still doesn’t want to acknowledge it because it hurts too much since they used to be good friends. When Kyle tells him that Julia Baskins is out of his league, Scott realizes that he has outgrown their friendship because Kyle is less mature than him. Scott becomes more adventuresome by participating in the school paper, the Zenger Gazette as the sports writer, getting on the student council, and being part of the crew for the school play.
All of these activities were to be near Julia who doesn’t succeed in obtaining positions on any of these extracurricular activities but Scott fulfills his responsibilities to them. Lee is another character that shows growth. She is new to the school and wears strange clothing, has piercings, and strange colored hair. Other kids at school call her “Weirdly” which is a combination of her name, Lee and weird. Her appearance keeps others at a distance. She has the love of literature in common with Scott. When Scott picks her up at her house to go to the last school dance of the year, Lee has changed her appearance to be normal.
Another issue that is relatable to teens is that actions have consequences. This is shown when Mouth attempts suicide by hanging himself. Scott feels extremely guilty for he thinks that he may have pushed Mouth over the edge by telling him that he has no clue what girls think at a dance; which resulted in Mouth asking all the girls to dance with him a second time and be rejected by them. When Scott gets a chance to visit Mouth in the hospital he finds out that Mouth feels alone and lonely. That is why he did it.
Scott points out that suicide leaves a mess that someone else would have to clean up. Also, when Scott first heard of someone from their school had committed suicide he first thought it was Lee as she always wore dark clothes and likes literature with vampires and death. He immediately feels guilt thinking that she might not have done it if he had been nicer to her and talked with her not caring what others might think. Another effect of one person’s actions is when Scott finally feels comfortable to talk with Wesley about him beating up people and taking their lunch money.
Scott relates it to how would Wesley’s imaginary younger brother feel would if that type of bullying was done to him. Wesley seems to understand what Scott is telling him and this conversation may change Wesley to become a better person. Another action that had consequences is when Mouth put in Scott’s piece in the Zenger Gazette relating the football team to food; where Vernon is referred to a hotdog. Scott knows that Vernon is mad about that and wants to beat him up and knowing that Scott has a crush on his girlfriend, Julia. Vernon finally gets his chance by having Kelly lure Scott to a vacant classroom.
When Scott gets home his father knows that he was in a fight but Scott tells him that, “it wasn’t a fair fight but that it is over. ” I believe the problems that Scott Hudson encountered in this book can be the same for high school students. Every new high school students faces the anxiety of the unknown when they first get into high school. This summer reading assignment gave us a glimpse of what those problems may be and let us see how the character, Scott handled them. I enjoyed reading Sleeping Freshmen Never Lie and think that this book will be read a 100 years from now.