Perfect for John Green fans

Winger by Andrew Smith

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 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.

Winger by Andrew Smith. Simon & Schuster, 2013. 439 pages.

Great "Green Lit" with rave reviews...

"Of all the young adult genres — the Dystopian Hellscape, the ­Human-Monster Romance, the Elite School-or-Camp for Nonmortals — the most popular right now may be the quietest: Aspiring John Green. GreenLit, as I like to call it, consists of realistic stories told by a funny, self-aware teenage narrator.

These novels tend to have sharp dialogue, defective authority figures, occasional boozing, unrequited crushes and one or more heartbreaking twists. John Green may not have invented this genre (I seem to remember a guy named Salinger), but he’s its reigning emperor. His brilliant novels “The Fault in Our Stars” and “Looking for Alaska” cannot be pried off the best-seller list. He has an online cult topping a million. He actually plays Carnegie Hall.

Andrew Smith’s latest book, “Winger,” is firmly in GreenLit territory. And while Smith is not going to dethrone Green, this should secure him a seat at the round table. “Winger” is a bit more cartoonish than Green’s novels — both figuratively and literally — but it’s smart, poignant and entertaining." Source: NY Times, May 10 2013.

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