Winger by Andrew Smith | Review

4.5 out of 5

Title: Winger
Author: Andrew Smith
Series: Winger (Book 1)
Publication Year: 2014
Genre: Contemporary
Pages: 439

Ryan Dean West is a fourteen-year-old junior at a boarding school for rich kids in the Pacific Northwest. 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 info-graphics 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.

So I just wanna start off by saying I took a little break from reading a while back so that's sort of to explain my absence from this blog. Those of you that follow us on Tumblr may have noticed that we've been a lot more active on there and that's partially because it's a bit easier during my reading break to kind of stay up-to-date on everything bookish by looking through everything on there. But lastly I want to thank all of you for sticking around (and that anon on Tumblr.) Why don't we get started?

This book is amazing. It's one of those books that I finished reading thinking "Wow, just wow." It was a perfect mixture of substance, fluff, humour and tragedy... This book is literally a emotional rollercoaster. It makes you laugh until tears come out of your eyes, then it gives you something to sob over. Seriously, your tear ducts will be empty by the end of this book. 

So a little bit about the book first. It's a contemporary set in a private boarding school where they have 2 different halls; one for "normal" people and the other for the "troubled." Our main character, Ryan Dean West, who is 2 years younger than everyone else in his grade, get's moved over to the hall with the "bad" kids, then all hell breaks loose. A lot of this books revolves around a main theme, rugby, and that's what ties a lot of the book together, which I find is pretty awesome because I've read way too many books where everyone is on a football team.

I think that another thing this book does really well with is staying away from clich├ęs. I feel like I've been reading way too many contemporaries these days that just follow what sort of feels like a standard "Character A is lonely, Character A meets Character B, Character A and Character B fall in love, Character A and B break up, Character development happens now, Character A and Character B get back together. The end." Winger does sort of follow this format but not to the extent where that's the whole story. To me, the romance element in this book is shoved in your face and that's the only plot you get. I feel like with Winger, the main plot follows the protagonist's life with a few interludes into his personal life.

Ryan Dean West is the quintessential hormonal teenage boy, He's hilariously crude while still being able to be serious at the same time. While yes, I agree that he objectifies every single person he sees, I don't think it takes away from the book. He's just one of those characters you can automatically relate to, I was drawn in from the very first sentence. And of course like you have all seen me say on this blog before, he's written with the perfect amount of flaws to make him awesomely relatable.

One thing I really loved about this book were really its characters. Everyone (and I mean everyone) in the book was fully developed and every character was full of surprises. I really can't say much without spoiling anything but really trust me on this, you won't be disappointed.

Do I recommend? Hell ya.

So really all that's left for me to say is whether I recommend this book or not. The answer to that is hell ya, this book has an amazingly different plot, an awesome array of characters... I guarantee that this book with be one of the best books you read for a long time.

Anna and the French Kiss||If You Liked #1

Anna and the French Kiss, we've probably all heard of this book some time during the past couple years as it exploded into the YA romance genre.

Sure, you may not have liked it
but you've got to agree with one thing, this book has all the makings of a successful YA romance; cute characters, snippy dialogue, an exotic locale, etc. And for the most part, I agree. I loved this book, everything just seemed to make it work. Some of Rainbow Rowell's (not all) books per se, in the same genre just end up kinda flopping for some reason.

For all of you out there who haven't read Anna and the French Kiss yet, stop reading and go read it now. It's one of the best books in the genre. For those of you who have read it, keep scrolling.

I'm Too Slow | Madness Mondays #5

I've been having a problem since the last time I dropped by with a reading update.

I'm reading



Notebook Confessions | Madness Mondays #4

Two weeks ago, I did a Madness Mondays post called My New Notebook. In that post, I said, and I quote, "I've decided to use it as my everything notebook."

As of this week, that's a lie. It is no longer my everything notebook. It is no longer my newest notebook.

Confession: I got a new notebook.

Confession #2: Confession #1 is a lie. I got two notebooks.

My New Notebook | Madness Mondays #3

So at the beginning of the New Year, I got an old notebook and ripped out all the used pages. I've decided to use it as my everything notebook.

So far, I've used up a few weeks worth of pages. So I decided to make a post about my notebook entries so far . . .