Scrawl by Mark Shulman.
After getting caught yet again doing something he shouldn’t have, Tod Munn is given afterschool detention with Mrs. Woodrow. It seems like a light sentence for the school bully, especially considering the two friends caught along with him are spending their detention cleaning up the school property while Tod is inside writing in a notebook. What unfolds is the story of the real Tod Munn, not the big bad bully everyone assumes he is.
Tod – yes, he is a bully, but through the notebook you see a deeper side of him. He is an intelligent guy who doesn’t have the best group of people in his life. He’s also loyal to one of his oldest true friends…and even the few new real ones he acquires. He has potential to make his life better, if only the right opportunities would become available.
Mrs. Woodrow – a teacher who cares, even though she admits she almost didn’t.
The detention assignment – It provides a deeper look into Tod’s life. I also like the sneaky way the writing grows on Tod.
The plot is a little thin at times, but overall it is a good read.