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Children's Fiction Adolescence


by (author) Robert Rayner

James Lorimer & Company Ltd., Publishers
Initial publish date
Jan 2011
Adolescence, Bullying
  • eBook

    Publish Date
    Jan 2011
    List Price
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    May 2010
    List Price
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Mar 2010
    List Price

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Where to buy it

Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels

  • Age: 14 to 18
  • Grade: 9 to 12
  • Reading age: 7 to 10


This dark and gritty new story from New Brunswick author Robert Rayner examines the moral choices of one teen with a childhood filled with emotional neglect and social bullying, and how haunting real-life choices made when you're young can be when you're older.
Life was never easy for Julian, aka Scab. After years of being tormented by his peers and ignored by his parents, he's about to show everyone that he has what it takes to make it. But he finds himself in a situation where he has to choose between his own ambitions and the only person who's ever cared about him.


About the author

A former elementary school principal, school district consultant, teacher and journalist, in England, Newfoundland, and New Brunswick, Robert Rayner now spends his time writing and teaching music. He is the author of three adult novels, nine young adult novels, and three teen novels. His stories have been shortlisted for the Ann Connor Brimer Children’s Literature Prize and (four times) for the Hackmatack Children’s Choice Book Award, and five of them have been included in the Canadian Children’s Book Centre annual ‘Best Books’ list. He lives on the Magaguadavic River in St. George, New Brunswick.

Robert Rayner's profile page


  • Commended, Best Books for Kids & Teens -- Canadian Children's Book Centre

Editorial Reviews

Provoking great conversation is exactly what former New Brunswick elementary school principal Robert Rayner has done with his first "older" teen work, Scab

Telegraph Journal

"There's some melodrama here, but the unsettling choices that Julian makes will stay with readers."

The Horn Book Guide

Librarian Reviews

Scab (SideStreets)

Life was never easy for Julian. At 17 he’s now a gifted photographer and on the verge of escaping a life of neglect and bullying. But one fateful night he is forced to make a choice — get the shot that will launch his career or save the only person who’s ever cared about him.

Source: The Canadian Children’s Book Centre. Best Books for Kids & Teens. 2011.

Other titles by Robert Rayner