Rumble Fish is another of Hinton's books about lower class adolescents involved in gang life. Rusty James had an older brother called Motorcycle Boy. He looked up to his brother who had set a previous example as being a tough guy. Rusty James spends his life trying to be lie him. The internal conflict is that he is not his brother nor can he be like his brother.
Motorcycle Boy left town to get away from the trap of the gangs and poverty. He knew that if he stayed he would continue to be perceivedthe same way the rest of his life. He wanted something better so he just left. The other conflict in Rumble fish is about overcoming ones environment. Motorcycle Boy knew this and so he had left, but it is a struggle that Rusty James has a harder time recognizing. When Motorcycle Boy returns he is once again expected by the law to engage in a criminal act. He is killed in the end. Rusty James leaves town in continuance of his brother journey.