Losers
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Losers

4.4 7
by Matthue Roth
     
 

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The perks of being an émigré wallflower

Jupiter was born in Russia, but he's getting quite an education in America. He sees everything slightly askew - but in a way that's endearing to (most) of his fellow students. A popular girl takes him under her wing. He falls for her. A bully sets him as a target. But Jupiter disarms him in an unexpected way. His

Overview


The perks of being an émigré wallflower

Jupiter was born in Russia, but he's getting quite an education in America. He sees everything slightly askew - but in a way that's endearing to (most) of his fellow students. A popular girl takes him under her wing. He falls for her. A bully sets him as a target. But Jupiter disarms him in an unexpected way. His best friend ends up hanging with a posse of science geeks. Jupiter feels left out. With dead-on deadpan humor, Matthue Roth makes everything illuminated about American teen life - like Borat as directed by John Hughes.

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Melyssa Malinowski
Jupiter Glazer is a loser. He does not like that fact but it is true. As a Russian immigrant he lives in the slummy part of a Philadelphia suburb called Yardley. Slums are bad enough, but his family lives in a factory. On his first day of high school he gets singled out and beaten up by a bully. On his second day, he gets kicked out of class for "not speaking English." (When he was!) But everything changes on Friday night. He sneaks into a party and all of a sudden people know his name at school. They actually say hello. Devin, aka hottest freshman girl ever, talks to him. Yet, his troubles are not really over. His nemesis, Bates the bully, is still a pain, but Jupiter now has a way to occupy his time. He travels to downtown Philly, to events, coffee shops, used book stores, and becomes enamored of the clientele. He loses friends, gains new friends, and rekindles friendships of old, all against the backdrop of high school and Philadelphia. He learns to redefine himself in a way he can be proud of and decides that maybe, just maybe, he will make it through high school without the title of loser. Jupiter is an easy character to relate to. His story conveys the awkwardness of beginning high school and the struggle to grow up. This would be a great read for boys. Reviewer: Melyssa Malinowski
School Library Journal

Gr 8-10

On his first day at a new high school, Jupiter Glazer finds himself completely ignored by his classmates or being shoved into a locker. His growing suspicions are confirmed: he's a loser. Maybe it's his Russian accent, maybe it's the fact that the only place he and his immigrant parents can afford to live is in the worst neighborhood in town, or maybe it's his friendship with fellow émigré and science nerd Vadim. Everything changes when he manages to crash a party being held by the hottest girl in school; a few semi-accidental witticisms and an accent makeover later, Jupiter is ascending, if not to popularity, at least to a comfortable slot in the high school social hierarchy. He seems to have a special gift for connecting with people, and this gift serves him in good stead as he begins to understand his family, his high school, and himself. Roth's wry, lighthearted touch lends this sweet novel and its protagonist tremendous appeal, which transcends the sometimes too-loose plot; it's a fast, funny read with teen appeal and musical references that will delight fans of '80s and '90s shoegazer rock. Outsiders everywhere will rejoice with Jupiter as he finds a place for himself in a world that often feels as foreign to him as he does to it.-Meredith Robbins, Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis High School, New York City

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780545068932
Publisher:
Scholastic, Inc.
Publication date:
10/01/2008
Pages:
192
Product dimensions:
5.44(w) x 11.08(h) x 0.41(d)
Lexile:
930L (what's this?)
Age Range:
14 - 17 Years

Meet the Author


MATTHUE ROTH is the author of the PUSH novel Never Mind the Goldbergs, as well as the adult memoir Yom Kippur-a-Go-Go. (Yes, that's Yom Kippur-a-Go-Go.) He lives in New York.

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Losers 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 7 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a must read and your prize! Very funny book... Starting point: the funny bone short stories result 3
Kaitlyn Martinez More than 1 year ago
Met the author in chelsea, manhattan....and was very charming and passionate about his work. I thought....seems like an extremely cool dude, i'll try out his books and was amazed at the way i was able to clearly read the book as if i were him and how scary it is to know that the he and the main character are so alike- quirky and funny.....=}
TeensReadToo More than 1 year ago
Jupiter Glazer has had a tough life ever since he got dragged from Russia to the United States when he was young. He's always been the kid who gets picked on and shoved into lockers. He only really has one good friend, Vadim, who is also Russian. The night before he starts his first day at a new high school, he decides he's not going to be that kid anymore. He's going to transform himself and actually fit in with the other kids and make friends. Soon, he's listening to old records to try to pick up the correct accent, and going to parties that he'd usually never even think of attending because he'd usually just be beat up. In the process, he's aggravating his parents because he's never home at the factory to help out when they're having a hard time. But little by little, Jupiter starts to fit in a bit more, and he realizes it's not so hard to blend in with everybody else and not get picked on constantly. This was a good read. From the very beginning, I sided with Jupiter, of course. It wasn't fair to him that he always got picked on because he wasn't from around there and had a different accent. I loved how he decided to change when he got tired of always being bullied. It made sense to transform himself when he was starting a new high school. Not everyone knew who he was, so he could really be anybody that he wanted to be. I thought that was a really brave thing of him to do. I definitely think bullies should read LOSERS so that they can understand what the people being bullied are going through - and maybe, just maybe, they'll understand that it's not right. I also liked the way that Mr. Roth wrote from both Jupiter's experience and also from Vadim's point of view. Definitely check this one out, especially if you like books about foreigners trying to fit in.
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