Red Heart Tattoo

Red Heart Tattoo

by Lurlene McDaniel

Hardcover

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Overview

In the vein of This is Where It Ends, this exploration of grief and tragedy in the aftermath of a bomb explosion at a high school is sadly topical and powerfully heartrending.
 
At 7:45 a.m. a bomb goes off at Edison High.
 
Nine people die instantly. Fifteen are critically wounded. Twenty-two are injured. One is blinded.
 
In the aftermath of the violent tragedy, survive struggle to cope and heal as a result of something they may never understand.
 
Told in alternating points of view, Red Heart Tattoo deals with issues of violence, death, and trauma in the lives of five teens.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780385734622
Publisher: Random House Children's Books
Publication date: 07/24/2012
Pages: 224
Product dimensions: 5.70(w) x 8.30(h) x 0.90(d)
Lexile: HL630L (what's this?)
Age Range: 12 - 17 Years

About the Author

LURLENE MCDANIEL is the #1 author of inspirational fiction for young adults. She lives in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

Read an Excerpt

1

Morgan Frierson looked across the football field, at stands filled with Edison students, all stomping and cheering for the start of the pep rally. A frenzied exhibition of school spirit would guarantee that Edison’s principal and staff would authorize another such rally. And who didn’t want to cut out of last period thirty minutes early? Morgan knew some kids were already melting away into the Michigan afternoon, ditching school and the rally, but most were hanging around in the stands.

She stood at the mouth of the short tunnel leading from the locker room, the football team stamping behind her, waiting for Principal Simmons to finish his comments on the makeshift stage in the middle of the field. The marching band had already played and gone through a few formations, and now its members were standing at the foot of the stage, sweating in the hot sun. Morgan fidgeted impatiently, and when she felt the brush of lips on the back of her neck, she jumped a foot.

“Whoa, babe! It’s a kiss, not a knife,” she heard her boyfriend, Trent Caparella, say.

Behind them, a few of the players made smacking sounds and off-color remarks.

Trent turned, saying good-naturedly, “Knock it off, dirtbags.”

Morgan spun to face Trent. “You startled me.”

Trent was a soccer player, but during football season Coach used Trent’s kicking leg to add necessary extra points and field goals to the scoreboard. “Nervous, Madam President?”

They were seniors and Morgan had been elected student council president. Today was her first public speech to the student body. “Nervous? How could I be? I just love talking to a thousand kids who are going to ignore me.”

“Never happen. When they see you coming, they’ll bow.”

“Very funny.” Morgan chewed her bottom lip, heard her name from the principal’s mike. She took a deep breath. “Here I go.” She jogged onto the field, looking at the ground so she wouldn’t trip. Catcalls and cheers erupted from the stands. She glanced up to see her best friend, Kelli, and a whole squad of cheerleaders waving at her. The front rows of the stands were packed with her fellow seniors, benches of honor at every pep rally, off-limits to the other kids.

Morgan trotted up the platform stairs, her hair bobbing on her shoulders, and went to the mike. “Seniors, juniors, sophomores, freshmen!” The bleachers yipped with whistles and stomping. Each class attempted to outscreech the others. Morgan quickly decided to dump her prepared remarks about school spirit. “Here they are!” she shouted. “Your Fighting Eagles!”

The football team, dressed in bright blue-and-white uniforms, jogged out onto the field, and the students did their cheering duty, led by the cheerleading squad. Morgan kept her eyes on Trent. He was gorgeous: tall, blond, broad-shouldered, with bulging leg muscles from years of playing soccer. She felt so lucky to be his girl. Ever since their freshman year, when they’d first set eyes on each other, they’d been a couple--“the Jock and the Princess, a Disney movie in living color.” That was what Kelli had always said about them. Morgan couldn’t deny she agreed with her friend’s analysis. She and Trent were a perfect couple; everyone said so. He was one of the reasons she’d been elected student council president, and they the Most Popular Twosome for the yearbook. But she’d earned Most Likely to Succeed and become a Merit Scholar on her own. No denying she was driven to earn high grades and college scholarships. Trent had already been offered athletic scholarships from top universities. They would be going their separate ways after graduation. That was hard for Morgan--knowing that this was their last year together before their lives changed forever.

The team jogged around the football field. Cheers. Kelli and the cheerleading squad flashed pom-poms, made human pyramids, executed precise tumbling routines. More cheers from the bleachers. The band struck up the school song and air horns sounded out of nowhere. The principal beamed toward the stands. Morgan felt a deep stirring of school spirit and teared up. For a moment, her gaze connected with Trent’s. He blew her a kiss.

And then, without warning, in front of the goalpost at the east end of the field, all hell broke loose.

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The Red Heart Tattoo 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 10 reviews.
lovepassionbooks More than 1 year ago
When I was in High school, the young adult novels that were out for us to read were Lurlene McDaniel books. And I loved them. I know that I read all the ones available at my library. They are just so heartfelt and close to home. They make you think about how great your life is at this moment in time. And this book is exactly what I remembered! You are in high school. You are sitting waiting for school to start. You are chatting with friends, catching up on homework, and just hanging with friends. But then the unthinkable happens....a bomb goes off and kills some, injures most, and blinds one. What is going through your mind? I don't know how I would be able to handle it. Some of my friends, I consider family. If any one of them gets hurt, it hits home. So you can only imagine how Morgan feels when she finds out exactly what happens in her high school. I think that this story was one of my favorites from Lurlene. She is such an talented author. She knows how to explain how people feel in the time of tragedy. She is an amazing author. And this is an amazing story! If you want to read a story that makes you keep turning the pages this book is defiantly the book that you will need!
FeatheredQuillBookReviews More than 1 year ago
This is one of those rare fiction books that speak wholeheartedly and truthfully about some very serious issues that are occurring in our day and age. From terrorism by young adults to bullying, teen pregnancy, and the age old theory of ‘Romeo and Juliet’ - where a guy from one side of the tracks finds himself madly in love with a ‘perfect’ girl from the other side - this tale has it all. As we begin, the school kids are all assembled in the courtyard excited about the fact that Thanksgiving Break is upon them and they finally get some time off from school to enjoy a holiday and each other. At 7:35 AM…a bomb is detonated, silencing their dreams… As the author brings us back to September, we are introduced to a girl by the name of Morgan Frierson. Morgan is Student Council President dating one of the jocks who’s mainly a soccer star, but in this season he’s also the field goal kicker for the football team - she is one girl who seemingly has it all. Also in school, when he feels like going, is Stuart Rothman (AKA: Roth). He’s liked Morgan since sixth grade - before he became the bad boy of the town. He lives with his Uncle, who has just taken a wife, and spends most of his time at his Uncle’s business - the Ink Spot tattoo parlor. His Uncle is a military guy with a big heart. Roth was orphaned at seven after his parents were killed in an explosion of their meth lad and became a ward of the state before being taken in by his Uncle, who makes sure that Roth knows that he MUST graduate high school no matter what, and drop this whole ‘wicked’ side. Kelli, one of Morgan’s best friends, is a cheerleader whose parented by a mom who wants nothing more than to relive her glory days through her child; although Kelli has an issue that will not only erase the cheerleading career but will also cause her to face a break-up. Roth’s best friend is a girl named Liza who wants far more than friendship. Add into all this a duo called ‘The Watchers’ who hate the popular students and want to make sure everyone knows it - and you have an unforgettable tale with a wealth of emotion. This author has done a fantastic job of overlapping fiction with fact. So much so, that the reader will be heartbroken when they think about the very real troubles in today’s schools. Quill Says: A lovely romance locked inside a tale of heartache, determination and a look at having to grow up way too fast!
reb922 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I remember devouring Lurlene McDaniel books when i was in junior high but hadn't read anything of hers in years. Red Heart Tattoo makes me want to go read all the books of hers i haven't read. Centering around a tragic explosion at a high school we see the before and after of these characters, how they are changed and how they coped and dealt with the situation. As always McDaniel does a great job of telling stories of love and trauma and loss.
lacikcrawford on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
When I was in High school, the young adult novels that were out for us to read were Lurlene McDaniel books. And I loved them. I know that I read all the ones available at my library. They are just so heartfelt and close to home. They make you think about how great your life is at this moment in time. And this book is exactly what I remembered! You are in high school. You are sitting waiting for school to start. You are chatting with friends, catching up on homework, and just hanging with friends. But then the unthinkable happens....a bomb goes off and kills some, injures most, and blinds one. What is going through your mind? I don't know how I would be able to handle it. Some of my friends, I consider family. If any one of them gets hurt, it hits home. So you can only imagine how Morgan feels when she finds out exactly what happens in her high school. I think that this story was one of my favorites from Lurlene. She is such an talented author. She knows how to explain how people feel in the time of tragedy. She is an amazing author. And this is an amazing story! If you want to read a story that makes you keep turning the pages this book is defiantly the book that you will need!
Bookswithbite on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Lurlene McDaniel books always find a way to my heart and my eyes are never dry. What I loved about this book is the moving plot. So intense from the very first page, the reader is captured. There has been many real devastating events like this to see as if I were the characters it amazing. The suffering they go through, the pain, it just heart wrenching.I really loved the love interest in the book. No, it's not quite a happy ending, but they are left with a connection. After all that they have been through, they can connect on a different level then anyone else. The emotions flowing through the book makes the reader feel shocker, angry, hurt, then healing.I can;t explain much of the book for fear that I would give too much away but know this, this book is good. I read this kinds of stories in the news everyday and to feel it as if I were there I can say that I somewhat understand. I don;t know completely cause I have not actually been through it but I can know at least what they are going through.Red Heart Tattoo makes the biggest accomplishment in writing a story, letting the reader be in the story. And Red Heart Tattoo does just that. The fear of the explosions, students screaming, crying and death all around the reader, it's nothing like I ever experienced. A book that delivers more that just a story, Red Heart Tattoo is amazing!
yabotd on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I was so excited to see Red Heart Tattoo by Lurlene McDaniel offered on NetGalley. Combining a physically and psychologically traumatizing event with a romantic storyline is like literature gold to me, if done well. Let me tell you, she did this really, really well.First, I want to clarify that the book is by no means focused on the romance. The bombing takes full focus with the lead up and aftermath being explored from multiple viewpoints. Add in all the drama of teenage life into these characters and you've got a rich story full of everything, which includes romance. I've never read a novel by Lurlene McDaniel before, so I wasn't sure what to expect from her craft. I was pleased with the amount of depth present in the story, particularly because there were so many characters and viewpoints to juggle. As usual, I'm drawn to the troubled teen character, so I immediately gravitated to Roth and his experiences. Lucky for me, he had a prominent role in the story. This story is both heartbreaking and heartwarming. Obviously, seeing as the major storyline involves a school bombing, there is a lot of tragedy and loss present. The heartwarming aspects come from certain individual's reactions to the event. It would be difficult not to be touched by the way the community comes together and supports each other. Beautiful.If I could've changed anything--and this is real nitpicky, based on personal preference--I would have wanted to get a little bit deeper into the experiences into a few of the main characters. I completely understand that this would have been difficult to do, particularly because there were multiple viewpoints presented, but it's my personal preference. For me, I'd rather get into the deep psychological and emotional experiences of one or two characters than a full look at several characters. That said, I really like the way this was done. It seems like it was important to McDaniels to present the community as a whole (by showing multiple viewpoints) rather than to keep a focus on one or two people.Overall, Red Heart Tattoo was a super quick read and a very touching story. I'm so glad to have read it.Final thoughts: Buy it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed reading this book. It kept me at the edge of mt seat. I love lurlene mcdaniels books. She never disappoints me in her writing.
Suzie_Beth17 More than 1 year ago
hits home wiith what is going on in the world these days
Anonymous More than 1 year ago