Winger (Winger #1)

Winger (Winger, #1)

How did I get it?:
I bought it!


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.


I have taken some time to write this review, as I’m actually not sure what I made of it. It was certainly a unique read. I didn’t hate this book, but at the same time, I didn’t really like it. I think it’s going to be a book that divides many readers. Perhaps Andrew Smith is a marmite author? I don’t know, this was my first experience of reading his work, but it left me feeling quite torn!

Winger centres around Ryan Dean, who is a clever fourteen year old boy. He’s two years ahead of his grade because he’s so intelligent. Being in a class with sixteen year olds makes him feel out of place. He finds it hard to fit in and make friends. Ryan Dean is also in ‘bad’ dorm of his boarding school as he’s not complying with the rules. Ryan Dean is incredibly hormonal. He’s awkward, funny and constantly makes mistakes. I think this makes him an incredibly authentic character.

For me, the story was a little repetitive and Ryan Dean was a little whingy. Winger is quite a long book at over 400 pages and I felt like the plot wasn’t nearly as full as it could have been. I enjoyed some of the jokes, but some were a little bit too crude for my liking.

The ending had me completely shocked, I didn’t see it coming at all. I love that in a book and that is what drove me to recommend it to others. That, and I’m sure others will enjoy Andrew Smith’s unique writing.

Would I recommend it?:

This book was a real mixed bag for me!

This Week In Books #65

I am joining in with the lovely Lipsy from Lipsy’s Lost and Found’s feature which highlights our week in books. I shall be sharing what I’m reading now, then and next! I won’t be showcasing my new books as I do that on a Saturday. I’m really excited by this feature as I loved sharing my recent reads. My book reviews published on my blog are often WAY behind what I’m actually reading, so this is a good feature to keep you up to date!

Click on the book to get to Goodreads!

Winger (Winger, #1) Unboxed The Sea of Monsters (Percy Jackson and the Olympians, #2)

NOWWingerAndrew Smith– I am almost halfway through Winger which I’m enjoying much more than I had anticipated. Andrew Smith’s writing is very different and I’m enjoying reading about the main character. It hasn’t got a strong, packed full plot but there’s something about it…

THENUnboxed- Non Pratt– This book didn’t take me long to read at all. It’s a very sweet story about friendship.

NEXTThe Sea Of MonstersRick Riordan– Next up, in the kid-lit challenge I’m completing with my sister Beth, is the next book in the Percy Jackson series. I’m eager to read this one!

What are you reading this week? Feel free to let me know or leave a link to a post that you do! Happy Reading!

Stacking The Shelves #104

Stacking The Shelves is all about sharing the books you’re adding to your shelves, be it buying or borrowing. From ‘real’ books you’ve purchased, a book you’ve borrowed, a book you’ve been given or an e-book they can all be shared!

As ever, click on the book Image to get to the Goodreads page!


Half Wild (The Half Bad Trilogy, #2) We All Looked Up

I was approved for Sally Green’s Half Wild which I’m excited about. I loved Half Bad and can’t wait to dig into the next instalment. We All Looked Up by Tommy Wallach was on my list of 2015 débuts I’m excited for, so I was happy to be approved for this book too!


I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings (Maya Angelou's Autobiography, #1) Winger (Winger, #1) I Don't Want To Be Crazy Everything I Never Told You

I bought I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings for part of the Banned Books feature that I have with Bibliobeth. I’m excited to read this book.

Winger is a book that I’ve wanted to read for a while, but for some reason I didn’t get around to!

I Don’t Want To Be Crazy is a book about anxiety. I  like to read books that tackle this issue as I suffer from anxiety myself. Hopefully this one will impress!

Everything I Never Told You is a 2014 début that I didn’t get around to! I’m looking forward to reading it.

What have you added to your shelves this week? Feel free to leave a link to your haul and I’ll stop by! Happy Reading 😀

Love Hurts


How did I get it?:
NetGalley- thanks to Random House Children’s Publishers UK


Malorie Blackman brings together the best teen writers of today in a stunningly romantic collection about love against the odds. Featuring short stories and extracts about modern star-crossed lovers from stars such as Gayle Forman, Markus Zusak and Patrick Ness, and with a brand-new story from Malorie Blackman herself, Love Hurts looks at every kind of relationship, from first kiss to final heartbreak.


I was SO excited about this book. However, I was a little disappointed when I got to it. I thought that this book was going to be original stories from some authors that I loved. There are some great original stories in there, but they’re few and far between. What I actually found was that I skipped a lot of these stories- either because I had read them already and didn’t feel like reading them again…or I have the full book waiting to be read and I didn’t want it to spoil it.

I don’t want to put people off this book though as the extracts from the authors I love like Malorie Blackman and Patrick Ness are such high quality writing- it’s just not what I wanted from this collection of short stories. James Dawson’s original story is good and well worth reading.

This book would be perfect for those wanting to dip into some of these author’s writing or to read the original content that there is. I love the range of diversity there is within this collection.

Would I recommend it?:

Some good original content, but don’t expect to go into the book with fresh, new material from all of the authors!