The Gun

By Paul Langen


Paul Langen is the author of the Bluford High series. He was born in 1972 and he has wrote all of the Bluford high series and is a popular author. He writes about poverty and a lot about how kids grow up in a hard life and how they get through it.

Main characters

Tyray: Older brother in prison has no one to look up too. Dad beats him and mom tries to keep ends meet. Was the top dog at his school but now is not.

Darrell: Used to get picked on by Tyray until he stood up to him and embarrassed him in front of the whole school.

Mr. Mitchell: The teacher at school that tries to help all of the students even if they don't want the help.

Dad and Mom: Dad beats him and mom occasionally always tells his sons that "a real man never shows his sensitive side and never cries." Mom tries to be a good mom always working then comes home and cooks and cleans.


The conflict of the book is that Tyray used to be the "Big Bad" kid in school and used to bully kids so he could get money or to get people laughing. Everyone used to be afraid of Tyray and one day when a boy named Darrell Mercer came to Bluford. Tyray for several weeks would take his lunch money but one day Darrell had enough and stood up to Tyray. Tyray ended up braking his wrist and becomes the laughing stock of the whole school. He looses all of his friends and respect.

Compelling Plot Teaser

Tyray can't handle all of the pain and stress from being the joke of the school, so he decides to get a gun and kill the boy who made all of this happen. He finds the boy then aims and BANG!!!!! Did he kill the boy or did he miss?

Short Passage

"Man I need help, I'm in so much trouble. It ain't never been like this" (Langen 120).

This is showing how Tyray has changed and has finally admitted he needs help because his dad always told him that you can never show sadness or show tears, and you are not a real man if you did show sensitivity. Now Tyray realizes that a real man CAN admit his wrongs and problems.


I think that the kind of reader that would like this book is the kids that are growing up in the gehtto who are struggling and need something to motivate them. Or keep pushing them forward. But really any kind of person will like the book if they like an inspiring story.

I liked this book a lot and am a big fan of the Bluford high series. I think they are very interesting stories and are very inspirational to me.