by Jerry Spinelli
I got this book in a contest from Forgotten Bookmarks.
I read it (all 218 pages) and did not enjoy it at all. Jerry Spinelli is an excellent writer, but I didn't like this one. It was like looking at all the good & the bad in Stargirl, taking out all the bad, and putting all the bad together in this book on its own. I was saddened, disgusted, creeped out, and appalled at every turn of the page. I hated every second of this book. The poor child is on display for our entertainment and is taught absolutely nothing about what being social is like. I spent the book feeling sorry for him, being mad at his parents and the world, and wishing the whole thing would just end.
I finished it, hoping for a happy ending I didn't really feel I got. Once again, Spinelli fails to show us how unique individuals can be part of a society/group/culture. What I think we need are individuals who can bring their crazy traits to share with us in a way that makes us embrace them and their differences, not cast them out for being crazy "Losers". But a crazy cast-out is all I got here. I blame the boy's parents completely. Yes, I admire individuality but setting your son up to fail and be a social outcast; is that really helping anyone in the long term?
This book made me sad. Moreover, it made me give up on Spinelli. So many people love his books but I started with Stargirl (which was both good and bad) and moved on to Loser (almost all bad). I can't stand to be let down or depressed further.