In Rumble Fish, what is a description--physical and mental--of Rusty-James? How is he different from other characters in this book?

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bullgatortail eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Rusty-James is the first to admit that he is not the smartest guy around. He doesn't understand much of what his father tells him, nor is he the brightest of his own gang. He prides himself on being tough, and he shows no fear in individual or gang fights. We know he is a fairly attractive guy, because he looks much like his glamorous brother, the Motorcycle Boy, who is described as having "wine-colored hair and midnight eyes." Rusty-James wonders if he looks anything like his mother, too. He is fairly tall for his age, since Biff--who is two years older--is about the same size. He has several scars from injuries and knife wounds received during fights. Though he doesn't admit it, Rusty-James is an emotional wreck, stemming in part, according to his brother, from when their father left him alone for three days as a child. He hates being alone, and he usually surrounds himself with fellow gang members or girlfriends. He worships his brother, the Motorcycle Boy, and he obviously missed his presence while he was absent (in California?) for two weeks.