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Wringer: Not All Birthdays Are Welcome

3.62  ·  Rating Details ·  11,476 Ratings  ·  863 Reviews
Newbery Medal-winning author Jerry Spinelli tells a story of peer pressure so foul, so horrifying, that Wringer should be shelved along with Robert Cormier's The Chocolate War. Nine-year-old Palmer dreads his upcoming 10th birthday. In his town, when boys are 10 years old they become "wringers," the boys who wring the necks of wounded pigeons at the annual Pigeon Day shoot ...more
229 pages
Published (first published January 1st 1997)
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(showing 1-30)
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Lars Guthrie
May 27, 2010 Lars Guthrie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Maybe my third time for this one, and I've upped my opinion a bit. I had previously found Spinelli's premise a little unrealistic, giving him the opportunity to make some possibly overbearing moral points.

Palmer LaRue dreads his upcoming tenth birthday. He wants to fit in with a small gang of rude boys who bully the girl who is his neighbor and erstwhile friend. On his next birthday he will become a 'wringer,' one of the boys who snaps the necks of wounded birds at Waymer, Pennsylvania's annual
...more
Ja
Mar 04, 2009 Ja rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was unique and captivating. It's definitely intended for younger kids, but it's still good all the same. Similar to another of Jerry Spinelli's books, Stargirl, it tells young readers that they don't have to give in to peer pressure. If they don't feel something is right, they need to voice their opinion. This is an important idea to instill at a young age in preparation for teenage-hood, kids need to know that they don't have to follow the crowd, even if it seems as if they're the onl ...more
Amber Gordon
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Linda Lipko
This 1998 Newbery honor book is powerful, poignant and hauntingly beautiful. This is a remarkable story of peer and social pressure, the courage to sort through the quagmire of self doubt until the mud clears and what remains is a crystal clear reflection of self acceptance.

Sensitive, animal loving nine year old Palmer LaRue passionately dreads the arrival of his tenth birthday. The rite of passage in his small town is to become a wringer -- a wringer of the necks of pigeons still alive after be
...more
Kaion
Aug 26, 2009 Kaion rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One thing that Jerry Spinelli really seems to capture well about children—their experience of a larger-than-life world. The ecstasy of a snow day. The stinging annoyance of a neighbor being called a 'friend. The blunt hungry yearning for acceptance.

In Maniac Magee, this hyper-reality took the form of the mythic. In Wringer it's visceral, our protagonist's dread of turning ten:
'In his dreams he looks down to find his hands around the neck of the pigeon. It feels silky. The pigeon's eye is like a
...more
Ola
Nov 27, 2015 Ola rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
قصة مدينة لايرحم القاطنين فيها أسراب الحمام الوديعة بل يمارسون شتى أنواع القتل بتفنن وهنالك مواسم تقام تتجمع فيها الأهالي لرؤية هذة البشاعة على مسمع ومرى الصغار الإ هنالك دائما يوجد استثناء وكان هذا الصبي هو الاستثناء فقد جاءت زائرة خفية إلى بيته طلبا للغذاء والنوم فقرر أن يعتني بها ولكن هل يتمكن من حماية الحمامة والوقوف أمام وجه المدينة ؟!
يبدو إن طفلي سيكون محظوظ بإقتنائه مجموعة جميلة من أدب الناشئين المعاصرين الذين أصبحت في الفترة الأخيرة شديدة الحرص على متابعة أعمالهم التي تسهم في ترسيخ مبادى
...more
Joy
1998 Newbery Honor Book

I wasn't really sure what this book would be about by the cover. It looked a bit like a horror novel. The inside jacket cover description was even more vague. It sounded more and more like it would be scary. Fortunately, it wasn't.

The main character is Palmer. He turns 9 at the beginning of the book and has been accepted into a gang of boys named Beans, Mutto and Henry. They nickname him Snots. His mother doesn't approve of them. Honestly, they're punks.

In the city that Pa
...more
Jaden
Mar 27, 2017 Jaden rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A classmate told me I should read this book and I'm so glad she did! By the looks of it, it isn't a book I would ever pick up, even after reading the back I didn't like it. I started reading it and I loved it. I'm sad that I finished it so quick, I never wanted it to end. Wringer is now one of my favorite books, I want to go back and reread it already!
Peacegal
Nov 04, 2010 Peacegal rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: humane-education
Despite the fact that it rarely shows up on humane-education lists, if I could suggest only one book promoting humane values, it would be Wringer.

Obviously inspired by the infamous Hegins Pigeon Shoot, Spinelli weaves the story of a young boy who faces an incredible dilemma: will he follow the path of his peers and become a “wringer” of the necks of injured birds at his town’s annual pigeon shoot, or will he stay true to his values and the wayward pigeon he’s adopted as a pet?

The book is told
...more
ala'
Aug 27, 2013 ala' rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
العصار ،

للوهلة الأولى بدا العنوان غريبا جدا ، من هو العصار هذا ؟ هل الكتاب الذي كتبه جيري سبينيللي ( مؤلف الخاسر ) عن عصار ما يعصر الليمون كل يوم ؟ ولا بد أنه طفل فقير وتعيس كما نرى من صورة الغلاف ، يعصر الليمون ويبيعه ليحصل قوت يومه ..

وهكذا دخلت الكتاب دون أي معرفة لماهية هذا العصار ، لأكتشف حبكة مثيرة للاهتمام و الجمال يديرها الكاتب ببراعة يحسد عليها ، ففي مدينة بطلنا الصغير الذي لم يتجاوز العاشرة من عمره ، يقام في كل عام عيد سنوي كبير يدعى أسبوع الأسرة ، وفي اليوم الأخير من العيد يحضر إلى ا
...more
Janelle
Aug 16, 2015 Janelle rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ya, family-book-group
My son selected this for Family Book Group. He prefers what he terms "realistic fiction" and Jerry Spinelli is one of his favorite authors.

Like some of his other titles, this one is about finding your true self and identifying your real friends. Palmer's isolation is anguishing - it's very hard for me (as an adult) to read about him running around with his thuggish friends and working so hard to appear to be something he isn't. It was also hard to me to accept that the adults in his life wouldn'
...more
Angie
Feb 21, 2009 Angie rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I learned that there are things you can't share with people all the time. Even though this would be an issue I can share I found in my own life I have things I can't talk about with anyone because of the way they will think about me...
Ktnace
Feb 20, 2017 Ktnace rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Mr. Spinelli writes great books!
Jasminecline
Mar 31, 2017 Jasminecline rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I thought that it was interesting because of the life chooses Palmer decides to do. I would read this book again.
Michael Hickey
Mar 20, 2015 Michael Hickey rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Victoria
Jun 18, 2009 Victoria rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Once more, in his characteristic style, Jerry Spinelli shows why he is one of my favorite authors. This inspirational, heartbreaking novel uses a strange approach to celebrate the power of friendship, love, and respect for life.

Palmer is terrified of his tenth birthday. The fateful day when he will be old enough to become a wringer, one of the boys charged with helping out on the day of the city's great Pigeon Day Shoot, breaking the necks of the innocent birds.

Every other boy anticipates this
...more
Jacob
Jan 16, 2013 Jacob rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wringer by Jerry Spinelli
265 pages
realistic fiction

This book is about a boy named Palmer Who has a love for pigeons. On his 10th birthday he became friends with three kids named beans Mutto and Henry. These kids are the normal kids there because they hate pigeons. In his town they have a family fest that has kids having fun with there kids doing fun things and then on the last day there is a day where they shoot and wring pigeons in the neck. Palmer hates this but his friends love it and Palme
...more
Samuel Kammerman
I could not put his book down and I truly believe that it deserved that Caldecott Medal. This book was a mesmerizing morality tale about a young boy who goes by the name of Palmer who cannot make sense of it. The book starts off with Palmers upcoming tenth birthday and in his town 10 year old boys turn into wringers. A wringer is someone who break the necks of "wounded pigeons" at the towns Pigeon day shoot. This was not the only big thing that was going to happen to Palmer, when you turn ten yo ...more
Sydney Snyder
Before I even started reading this book I had the question what is a wringer. Throughout the book, I found myself asking many questions which, like any good book, were answered and didn't leave me confused. The vocabulary in the book was simple, but the Wringer had a good message. The book was interesting because it is not what I would usually read.

*Spoiler alert*
In the book, Wringer, the main character Palmer starts out by telling the reader that he doesn't want to be a wringer. Later you lear
...more
D.C.
Jun 24, 2015 D.C. rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another beautiful, supremely poignant work from the rich pen of Jerry Spinelli. Here you don't have to be a lover or hater of Spinelli's style as I've commented on before; oh yes, it's still there, and the writing is very poetic with dark undertones, but Maniac Magee and Hokey Pokey seem to have those half-unexplained, almost grim plot devices and flow that seems to repel some people. Wringer has it more so; less so (tough to explain, I know.) But the plot is executed so simply yet so wonderfull ...more
James A.C. Morris
Jun 16, 2009 James A.C. Morris rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The book "Wringer" by Jerry Spinelli. This is one of my favorite books because it is by one of my favorite authors. Also, it taught me a lot of things. It taught me the definition of a wringer was. A wringer is someone that breaks animals neck. In this case the boy had a job to wring birds neck. This made me more interested in this book because I do not like birds and I find their living puposeless. Also it teaches you that you must make your own decisions in life and that if you have a job that ...more
Jolene Munch
Jul 14, 2016 Jolene Munch rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
To be totally honest when I first saw the book cover I was a bit terrified. This was because I just saw a child's face and in big font was the word Wringer. I didn't know what to expect, so I always read the synopsis at that back of the book. After reading it, it sounded really interesting except, I honestly had no clue what a wringer was! I thought a wringer was a good thing but after reading the first chapter I thought wrong. I've also never heard of the author Jerry Spinelli until this summer ...more
Alice
Jan 25, 2012 Alice rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 12th-grade
This book is about a boy named palmer who must become a wringer on his 9th birthday. He dreads this day because he does not believe it is right to kill pigeons but he wants to fit in so he pretends that he hates pigeons. A pigeon flies to his window every day and befriends him. The gang finds out and on the wringing day, they kill Palmers pigeon.

I thought this book was very sad but had a very remarkable setting and character emotions were very stongly portrayed throughout the book. It really mak
...more
cheyenne
the plot in this book is thatpalmer is 9 about to turn 10 years old and that is the time he has to become a wringer.but he doesn't want to become a wringer so wants to stop his self from getting older. even thought becoming a wringer is a family fest and a honor and tradition. but he find a visitior on his windowsill and now he knows that it is time to stand up.
a connection i have to this book is that i am soon going to be 12 and i don't want it to come but you can't stop time.so no matter how
...more
Brenda Engelhardt
Wringer is the story of a young boy coming of age in a town that features a pigeon shoot every year. The story centers on the boys hatred for killing the birds, his friendship with a bird and a girl, and the inevitable desire to fit in and be liked.
This book is written from the perspecitve of Palmer. He is a good kid but also a boy who is expected to do boy things, have gross nicknames and tease girls. Jerry Spinelli writes the charater convincingly. And it doesn't seem to matter whether you ar
...more
Lauren Adams
Aug 23, 2016 Lauren Adams rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Pam
Nov 04, 2008 Pam rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This novel is about a community that has some strange rights of passages for boys turning 9 and 10 years old. At nine years old they are required to get punched in the arm 9 times while being held defenselessly. When the boy reaches 10 years old, he is expected to kill pigeons at a popular annual family affair by wringing their necks.

This book is good in that it deals with the topic of peer pressure. I like how the story overall promotes standing up for what you believe in no matter what everyon
...more
Adam
Feb 04, 2010 Adam rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A great example of peer pressure for pre teens and even below that (it was kind of below my reading level). The story was SO odd yet unique and after about 50 pages in I got the analogy that Spinelli used throughout the entire book and I loved it. I was not completly satisfied with the ending though.
My favorite thing about the book was the writing. Now the story was decent, but the writing blew me away. If you are talking about how well a book is written, this is up there with The Giver, Knife
...more
Alex Koster
Dec 19, 2016 Alex Koster rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2nd-quater
A very good book, the only thing would be that it was kind of slow, and not not very detailed.
Makenna
Oct 25, 2010 Makenna rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: for-school, hated
The book Wringer was one of the saddest books I have ever read (I know I'm weird). The whole book was dark and depressing and I really had no connections. I really did not like this book, even though it had an interesting weird plot. It tells the story of a boy who finds a pigeon who also likes him and they become "friends". Then the boy has to become a Wringer and he has to pretty much prove his friendship with his pigeon friend. I just didn't get it and it was a boring read.

What the fuck even
...more
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book 2 11 May 17, 2016 09:13AM  
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When Jerry Spinelli was a kid, he wanted to grow up to be either a cowboy or a baseball player. Lucky for us he became a writer instead.

He grew up in rural Pennsylvania and went to college at Gettysburg College and Johns Hopkins University. He has published more than 25 books and has six children and 16 grandchildren.
Jerry Spinelli began writing when he was 16 — not much older than the hero of his
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