Loser by Jerry SpinelliLoser by Jerry Spinelli


byJerry Spinelli

Paperback | May 1, 2018

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From renowned Newbery-winning author Jerry Spinelli comes a powerful story about how not fitting in just might lead to an incredible life. This classic book is perfect for fans of Gordon Korman and Carl Hiaasen.

Just like other kids, Zinkoff rides his bike, hopes for snow days, and wants to be like his dad when he grows up. But Zinkoff also raises his hand with all the wrong answers, trips over his own feet, and falls down with laughter over a word like "Jabip."

Other kids have their own word to describe him, but Zinkoff is too busy to hear it. He doesn't know he's not like everyone else. And one winter night, Zinkoff's differences show that any name can someday become "hero."

With some of his finest writing to date and great wit and humor, Jerry Spinelli creates a story about a boy's individuality surpassing the need to fit in and the genuine importance of failure. As readers follow Zinkoff from first through sixth grade, it becomes impossible not to identify with and root for him through failures and triumphs.

The perfect classroom read.

Jerry Spinelli received the Newbery Medal forManiac Mageeand a Newbery Honor forWringer. His other books includeSmiles to Go,Loser,Space Station Seventh Grade,Who Put That Hair in My Toothbrush?,Dump Days, andStargirl. His novels are recognized for their humor and poignancy, and his characters and situations are often drawn from his re...
Title:LoserFormat:PaperbackDimensions:240 pages, 7.62 × 5.12 × 0.45 inPublished:May 1, 2018Publisher:HarperCollinsLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0060540745

ISBN - 13:9780060540746

Appropriate for ages: 9 - 12

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Rated 5 out of 5 by from Super! I've had this book since I was a kid and it is still one of my absolute faves. It's such a compelling story that outcasts and the popular kids alike should hear.
Date published: 2017-10-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Very memorable book I read this book when I was in elementary school. It was one of my favourite books back then. There were many relatable factors in the book. I really really enjoyed it.
Date published: 2017-08-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Wonderful I first heard this book in grade 4 and since then it has been one of the most beloved stories in my personal library. The story of Zinkoff captured the feelings of being the outcast as well as the emotional tug of war that is childhood. An honest, funny, and sometimes painful narrative that I would recommend to every child.
Date published: 2017-08-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing I read this book as a child and I absolutely loved it! So glad I read it.
Date published: 2016-12-28
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Well.. Don't have a lot to say about 'Loser'. I had to read this novel in school over a 4 week time period, but just decided to read it in a few hours and get it over with. I think the books plot at times was interesting, but most of the time I felt like I was too old for the book..I'm sorry but thats just my opinion. I think the font was also too large, but hey, just my thoughts. Although, I must give praise to Jerry (author) because I'm a reasonable person. I can say though that I can appreciate good writing when I see it, and I must say that Jerry really does have a way with words ;) Although this book isn't something I'd usually go for, it was worth the read. It did annoy me a bit in the beginning how naive the main character (Zinkoff) was about his being bullied. I suppose this was because he was very young, and maybe the author did this on purpose to portray more of his character personality. The book did develop and get better in my opinion. Anyways, I probably wouldn't read 'Loser' again, but I think everyone should read it at least once. So I guess I'm half and half about this book. BUT, overall, nice job Jerry. It was a beautiful classic :)
Date published: 2012-04-04
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Excellent book This is a story about a social outcast and how he comes out of his shell. It makes you think about the character named Zinkoff. He is very strange, but he is just being himself. The author is trying to say it's OK to just be yourself. In the end, we aren't sure if Zinkoff has friends, but there is a sign he gains respect from the others in his community. This is another example of how Jerry Spinelli writes a protagonist that isn't perfect. The character's flaws are what makes him more realistic. I really liked this book because sometimes I really sympathized with Zinkoff. And sometimes I wondered if I was as bad as those other kids.
Date published: 2011-06-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A special boy who cares Zinkoff is not a popular boy. He's clumsy, distracted and awkward to make friends with. But he quite happily doesn't notice. He believes the childhood tales his mother told him far longer than the others. He's proud of his father who is a mailman, and the variety of clunker cars he drives until they won't go any longer. He loves his little sister. Zinkoff is a sweet caring boy who ponders the world differently and often much longer than the other kids. Things like 'why would a man sit at a window for years on end, talking to no one, waiting for his brother to come home from a war that ended years before?' And paying attention to the little kids in the neighbourhood when kids his age are far above that. Accepting their special little gifts of rocks with grace. You can tell as you venture through this tale that Zinkoff is not completely normal. Developmentally something is wrong, although we are never told what it is. Instead we witness his rich inner life and just how deep his caring goes. Although many of his fellow students never do see past his clumsiness and lack of smarts, towards the end some do begin to see him differently. This is not a preachy tale, but one that will touch deeply if you pay attention. Would be a great read for a grade 6 or 7 class, and open many doors to discussion. Spinelli handles this with care and a wonderful light touch. Really is a great book for all ages. If you haven't read it yet, WHY!?
Date published: 2009-10-21
Rated 1 out of 5 by from um...alright, I guess This book is a book that I sort of liked, but all it is is an overview of his years. Just facts about how much of a Loser he was over the years. It's not a story really, but they just tell you what big things happen in his school. At the end the book doesn't really wrap up. It just ends in the middle of the story. It's just a bunch of facts and then it ends in the middle. I didn't like it too much. You'd have a laugh or two but...
Date published: 2008-03-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Brilliant, Just Brilliant This is my favourite book of all time. At some parts it can make you laugh and at some parts it can make you want to cry. I highly recommend this book.
Date published: 2007-01-24
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Don't Want to Put Down Book!!! I liked this book because it didn't have too much detail! When I saw it, I thought that I didn't want to read it. But I read it anyway and it was good! My favourite part was when Donald Zinkoff got an 'A' on a test because he usually dosn't and people accepted him for a little while. Everyone doesn't accept him in the book. In his fourth year at an elementary school, he makes his team lose Field Day, a day sort of like an all day recess. Because of this, they call Donald a Loser. In grade 5, he doesn't go to field day because of the year before. I didn't like that because he should've just tried his best at the race, just like the year before. The part that I didn't like was that part. I would reccomend this book to everyone because it is very enjoyable! I also liked it because Jerry showed emotions without just saying 'He was sad.' to the reader reading the book. Lots of things were going through my mind after the first 2 chapters! So read this book!
Date published: 2005-04-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from wait it's over all ready nooooooooo!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! i loved it nothing else was speechless the whole way through
Date published: 2005-02-09

Editorial Reviews

“Drop everything and read it!” (Time for Kids)