Fourth Grade Journey

A Fourth Grade Teacher's Journey Through the World of Books

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Winger by Andrew Smith...

How I Heard About It:   I love it when I hear about a new novel on Twitter, go to the bookstore to purchase the book, begin it as soon as I get home, and finish it within days.  That is what happened with Winger by Andrew Smith.  

What It Is About:  Ryan Dean West is a fourteen year old genius who is a junior in high school at Pine Mountain; a boarding school for wealthy children.  While starting his junior year he has been moved to the dorm for "troubled" students because of an incident his sophomore year.  Ryan Dean has to room with Chas; the campus and Rugby team bully.  Life is complicated for Ryan Dean because his friendships with his best buddies Seanie and JP are changing and the three of them aren't sure how to handle those changes.  Add Annie, a junior girl that Ryan Dean is totally in love with, and things get even more complicated.  The only person that he can really count on for support, advice, and friendship is Joey.  He is an upperclassman who is the only "out" gay student on campus.  As these young adults move through their fall semester at Pine Mountain, an incredible difficult Rugby season, and ever-changing relationships; Ryan Dean grows up more than he ever thought possible.

What I Thought Of It:   This was a beautiful coming-of-age story.  I completely enjoyed every aspect of this story.  Well, actually there was one thing that frustrated me about the book.  As much as I enjoyed the plot during the beginning and middle, I felt that the main event that you could tell was coming as a reader was saved for the very end of the story.  It is a small aspect that bothered me, but didn't take away from the story.  The characters in this story were real, relatable, and believable.  I won't be forgetting this story for a long time to come.    

Who Should Read It:  Winger is the type of novel that all high school students should read.  All the typical "roles" are portrayed in this novel and how these characters interact with each other.  I also think adult readers will enjoy the story just as much as teen readers.  This book brought me many hours of enjoyment and I know it will for you also.  Happy Reading!!!  

Rating:  4 STARS out of 5 Stars

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