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Winger [Englisch] [Gebundene Ausgabe]

Smith Andrew , Sam Bosma

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14. Mai 2013
A teen at boarding school grapples with life, love, and rugby in a heartbreakingly funny novel.

Ryan Dean West is a fourteen-year-old junior at a boarding school for rich kids. He’s living in Opportunity Hall, the dorm for troublemakers, and rooming with the biggest bully on the rugby team. And he’s madly in love with his best friend Annie, who thinks of him as a little boy.

With the help of his sense of humor, rugby buddies, and his penchant for doodling comics, Ryan Dean manages to survive life’s complications and even find some happiness along the way. But when the unthinkable happens, he has to figure out how to hold on to what’s important, even when it feels like everything has fallen apart.

Filled with hand-drawn infographics and illustrations and told in a pitch-perfect voice, this realistic depiction of a teen’s experience strikes an exceptional balance of hilarious and heartbreaking.

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Winger + Cinder: Book One of the Lunar Chronicles + The Darkest Minds
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"Winger broke my heart, like any great book should. Andrew Smith is a brave and talented storyteller who blows me away every time. Readers will love Ryan Dean West. This book is powerful, sweet and heart-wrenching." (A. S. King, Printz Honor-winning author of Please Excuse Vera Dietz)

"Winger is one of the most honest and beautifully raw novels I've read in a long time. Ryan Dean is a true original." (Matt de la Peña, author of Mexican WhiteBoy and We Were Here)

* "[A] brutally honest coming-of-age novel...Like puberty itself, this tale is alternately hilarious and painful, awkward and excellent, challenging read." (Publishers Weekly, starred review)

* "Smart, wickedly funny...In a magnificently frenetic first-person narration that includes clever short comics, charts and diagrams...Smith deftly builds characters—readers will suddenly realize they’ve effortlessly fallen in love with them—and he laces meaning and poignantly real dialogue into uproariously funny scatological and hormonally charged humor, somehow creating a balance between the two that seems to intensify both extremes. Bawdily comic but ultimately devastating, this is unforgettable." (Kirkus Reviews, starred review)

* "This deceptively lightweight novel packs an unexpectedly ferocious punch." (Booklist, starred review)

"Amusing and touching in a “Looking for Alaska,” meets Rabelais meets “Friday Night Lights” kind of way.” (A. J.Jacobs, New York Times Book Review)

* "Smith's masterful narrative of the hormonal yet insightful teenage boy flows smoothly throughout the unforgettable and unflaggingly appealing voice...A classic coming-of-age story that combines humor and heartbreak in just the right amounts." (Shelf Awareness, starred review)

"Andrew Smith crafts something in Winger that will have you thinking about the things you choose to say and those you leave unsaid." (TeenReads)

"Sharp, funny, and perceptive about youthful male friendships. Readers who enjoy stylistically interesting stories about underdogs in boy world may therefore still find this witty and entertaining." (BCCB)

"A reader looking to pigeonhole Winger into a traditional genre category may be in for a surprise. It’s a laugh-out-loud funny sports story set at a boarding school, but it’s also a serious look at the many different forms of love—and a subtle meta-narrative about the process of telling a story...Reminiscent of Looking for Alaska, Winger packs a punch that will leave readers rethinking their assumptions about humor, friendship and the nature of storytelling—and about the broad range of emotions of which teenage boys are capable." (BookPage)

You're not going to find futuristic fantasies or superpowers in Andrew Smith's young adult novel Winger. Fourteen-year-old Ryan Dean West's life at a boarding school for the wealthy is by all accounts ordinary -- he has an unrequited crush on his female best friend, and he has to share a room with his rugby team's biggest bully -- but that's also Winger''s" appeal. (

“I am seriously moved beyond words after finishing this beautiful, hilarious, and heart-exploding book. Reading Winger is like running down a steep hill--you should probably slow down, but it feels too good to stop. Andrew Smith has written a wildly original, hilarious, and heartbreaking ode to teenage confusion and frustration. You'll devour it and then go back for more." (John Corey Whaley, author of the Printz and Morris winning Where Things Come Back)

Über den Autor und weitere Mitwirkende

Andrew Smith is the author of several award-winning novels for young adults. He lives in a very remote area in the mountains of Southern California with his family, two horses, two dogs and three cats. He doesn’t watch television and occupies himself by writing, bumping into things outdoors, and taking ten-mile runs on snowy trails. He maintains a blog and website about his strange writing life at

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21 von 22 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen One of the best books I've read this year 14. Mai 2013
Von K. Sowa - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
This was my first Andrew Smith book and after reading it I finally realized why he has so many devoted fans. Winger was heartbreaking, honest, and hilarious. I don't mean smile while you're reading funny, I mean that I laughed so hard at parts of this book that I woke up my husband because my laughter was shaking the whole bed. (Any book that has a haiku about getting kicked in the balls will always be number one in my heart, ok?) The hilarity is artfully combined with moments of painful honesty that go perfectly with Ryan Dean's raw and unapologetically hormonal narrative voice. The book is also filled with the cartoons and infographics that Ryan Dean creates, which adds to the humor and overall experience of reading this book. For me, it brought me even further into the story because I wasn't just reading about the cartoons that Ryan Dean was drawing for his friends, I was getting to see them, as well. (I would like a graphic novel that tells Screaming Ned's back story, please.)

The thing about Ryan Dean that I loved was that even though he is riddled with a lot of self-doubt, he really doesn't let it hold him back. He's younger and smaller than all of the guys, but he plays rugby with everything he's got, anyway. He's rooming with the biggest bully on the team, but that doesn't stop him from crushing on said bully's girlfriend. The girl he loves thinks of him as a "little boy" but he never gives up. Although some of his decisions made me cringe, I could not help but fall in love with the way he just decided to go big or go home. Although Ryan Dean alone was entertaining enough, the people he interacts with at school were a big part of the reason why I loved this book so much. Every relationship in this book was a treasure. Even the most unsympathetic residents of Opportunity Hall eventually found a place in my heart, which I think is a testament to Andrew Smith's writing and his ability to flesh-out the characters. That ability to make you care about everyone is the reason why, more than halfway through the book, you will find yourself going from laughing to crying. I wasn't prepared for that and it made the book a very intense read, but if anything, I think it made me love it even more. In my mind, Winger was ultimately a story about love and acceptance that was framed within the context of the complicated and confusing feelings of a hyper-intelligent teenage boy. There are very few books that get it right the way that Winger does. I am so glad that I read this story. Read this book and you won't be sorry. Trust me on this one, folks.
11 von 11 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
3.0 von 5 Sternen Great Narrator, mediocre plot 7. Juli 2013
Von Tiffany M. Stephens - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
Ryan Dean West may be the most realistic 14 year old narrator I have ever read. Horny, funny, and horribly self-absorbed, he muddles through his junior year, managing to pick fights with just about every male he comes into contact with. But while I liked the voice and style of the narration, I didn't feel any great emotional connection to Ryan Dean. He was supposedly the smartest kid in school ( a junior at age 14), a varsity rugby player, receiver of the affection of the two hottest girls at the school, and friends to some of the most popular kids, yet somehow he was supposed to be pathetic? I didn't buy it. He seemed just as douchey as all the other kids on the Rugby team, even more so , maybe. Perhaps that was the point, but on further reflection, I guess I missed the point of the story entirely. It takes a lot of fights, drunken nights, sex jokes, and make-out sessions before anything of real substance happens in the plot, and then when it does, despite the fact that it is earth shattering, it somehow feels anti-climactic. It was funny, and I will recommend it to my high school students, but I didn't love it like other reviewers did.
3 von 3 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
4.0 von 5 Sternen Great story 13. August 2013
Von Amy K. Jensen - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Kindle Edition|Verifizierter Kauf
I picked this book out for my 11 year old nephew (just turned 11), but wanted to read it first to make sure it was ok for him. I decided it wasn't right for him, though I know other 11 year olds who are probably mature enough for it. The book tells the story of Ryan Dean, a rugby player at a boarding school in the Pacific Northwest. His best friend is Annie, a fellow student who is a little older than him, and he's totally in love with her and trying to deal with his feelings for her for most of the book. He ends up living in a dorm for the kids who get into trouble, and easily succumbs to their bad behavior, including late night drinking and various pranks. One of the other guys in the dorm (and also a teammate on his rugby team) is gay, so that subject comes up quite a bit, but Ryan Dean doesn't care one way or the other because to him, Joey's a great teammate and friend. It's a good message for boys. There are also a few references to his own body and sexual arousal, and there are a few swear words (which Ryan Dean, as the narrator, recognizes he shouldn't be saying). Given that the book is about a rugby player, there is some violence. The book has a very powerful, emotional ending, and while I thought it was a very good book and had important messages, I think I'll give it to my nephew in another year or so. :)
1 von 1 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen More Than Just A Rugby Book 31. Mai 2014
Von MRS HAYLEY GRIFFITH - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Kindle Edition
“I am such a loser”. Winger, a novel written by Andrew Smith tells the plight of a fourteen year old junior, a rugby player playing the same position as the title of the book. Winger created fame for its author, previously unknown. It gained popularity for very good reasons too. Winger deals with much bigger subjects than just winning or losing high school sports. It instead deals with issues that plague the world around us including tolerance and love. Smith attempts to persuade the reader to evaluate the friends around them, realize how lucky they are, and how much they would miss them all in an entertaining, humorous way.
When the novel first begins the reader is introduced to Ryan Dean West, a fourteen year old junior studying at Pine Mountain, a private school. It is revealed that along with being two years younger than all of his peers Ryan Dean is trapped inside opportunity hall, where the delinquents of Pine Mountain are kept, while being hopelessly friend zoned by the girl he loves Annie Altman. Ryan Dean vows to change his self-image at Pine Mountain this year. However, conflicts plague his year losing friends over girls, fights and such. Ryan Dean begins to lose hope and his friends, realizing he needs them. He begins to claw them back with the help of joey, his last true friend until one traumatic event leaves him shattered and broken.
One of the biggest problems this novel faces is a misleading preface. Although rugby is something the reader is foreshadowed to hear a lot about it is never really mentioned after the halfway point of the book. The reader hears about a total of two to three games of rugby throughout the novel and only a handful of practices. Even though Ryan Dean indicates that he “had been dying to play all summer” (Smith 82). The fact that this book markets itself as a rugby book can lead to frustration for a reader interested in the sport. It may be true that this book has elements of rugby in it; Winger is not a rugby book. Something it tries to make itself out to be in the beginning of the novel and art work.
However, Winger deals with some huge topics, something it could not have achieved if it had been a rugby book. Amongst the many massive topics it deals with one of the most obvious is tolerance. Joey, a gay kid, remains one of the protagonist’s closest friends. Joeys sexuality does however confuse Ryan Dean often feeling the need to add “in a totally non-gay way” (Smith 396) and sharing personal troubles with Joey. Dealing with such huge topics is something most novels cannot handle, particularly a sporting book. That remains the reason why Winger is not a rugby book, it wants to deal with bigger topics and it succeeds.
One of the biggest strengths of this novel is the protagonist himself. Ryan Dean remains interesting throughout the novel providing an accurate depiction of the events through the eyes of a fourteen year old boy. For example Ryan Dean clearly shows the usual characteristic of sexual frustration so clearly seen in boys going through puberty.” When he met a female he often admitted that “she’s kinda hot” (Smith 72) including not only Annie but every female he meets. His perverted thoughts are something everyone knows happens and they are not stifled, creating a character the reader knows could be real, not simply a thing developed by an author. Through the simple honesty of Ryan Dean’s character the reader is fascinated in the events involving him, resulting in a book one cannot put down.
With the creation of Winger, Smith created an entertaining insight into a fourteen year olds life, showing just how much everyone needs people. Even though this novel may be misleading its overall subject the final product is far better than what it would have been. This along with the protagonist creates an enjoyable read. Do not read this book if you want to learn about rugby, instead read it if you desire an insight into far bigger subjects such as tolerance and love in an incredibly enjoyable way.
1 von 1 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
3.0 von 5 Sternen 3.5 Rating, but good book overall 13. März 2014
Von DJ - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
Let me begin by stating that Andrew Smith does an excellent job at creating his character, Ryan Dean. I just didn't like Ryan Dean quite the way I wished I did. Sometimes I liked him, but the way he thinks, talks, got on my nerves a little bit because he was a rambler. Of course, that's what Smith wanted. The book is very well writtem, and despite the 400+ page count, it reads faster than most YA books. You may find yourself skipping paragraphs to get on with the story, like I sometimes did.

The story is pretty easygoing at first, but there are some serious themes about friendship and love buried beneath the humorous language and dirty "high-school" dialogue. I recommend it to generally males, but girls can read it too, if anything, to get into the head on a typical high school boy who may lack the maturity of his peers (he is two years young for his grade).
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