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Tiltawhirl John

3.39  ·  Rating Details ·  69 Ratings  ·  7 Reviews
You have to take sides to survive - even if the choice tears you apart. His uncle wanted him to stay home and work the farm. But the boy knew there was a world out there he had to see. Yet being a runaway meant you were outside the law - fair game. That's how he got caught on the farm gang. There was no way out, until Tiltawhirl John picked him up and taught him how to be ...more
Hardcover, 127 pages
Published June 1st 1992 by Peter Smith Publisher (first published 1977)
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May 12, 2016 Josiah rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
You can't be certain what you're going to get from Gary Paulsen in the 1970s and into the '80s, his pre-prime as an author. His ideas were good, but they didn't reach full potential in all his early books, before he started dogsledding and gained new perspective on the natural world and man's place in it. Like many of his other early offerings, Tiltawhirl John (released 1977) borrows significantly from Gary Paulsen's own adolescent experiences and refuses to sugarcoat the horrors of life for te ...more
Aug 06, 2016 Stephen rated it it was ok
One of the lesser Paulsen books. It doesn't have the critical reception many of his others do, and I think that's because this book didn't really speak to anyone out there. The main character is almost faceless in this thing.

I like the idea of a kid so sick of working on the farm that he runs off and becomes a carnie, but this book shows us a kid who finds that manual labor at the farm and scams at the carnival are equally boring. The problem is the book doesn't go from one extreme to another,
Nov 22, 2013 Dom rated it really liked it
The title of my book is Tiltawhirl john. The author is Gary Paulen.It was publication in 1990. Itdid not get literary awards. I like the book. Ilike that he has new friends. I didn't like how he got treated. I didn't like that he got beaten.

The setting of the book is at a farm. The good guy is Tiltawhirl John. He likes to work and get money. He dose not give up when work gets hard. They are like me because I like to work and get money. The supporting charaters are Maria and the Old man. The Ol
Luke Eggers
Jan 02, 2014 Luke Eggers rated it liked it
This novel is a story about a boy who lives in a small town on the farm. His uncle wanted him to stay and work on the farm, but John knew that there was a world out there that he had too see. But, being on your own isn't easy and comes with consequences, he would soon find out. He had to learn how to stand up for himself and for what he believed in, no matter what the result may be. Paulsen put his own twist on a story about growing up and facing the world. I would recommend that young people ...more
Jun 27, 2013 Sarahhk rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya
Don't be fooled by it's slim appearance--Tiltawhirl John packs a punch. It's a great recommendation for a high school reader who reads below grade level but who wants to read about someone who is "fifteen and close as a hair to sixteen" and who "went off to seek...fame and fortune and find out about love and sex and death and what it's like not just to be a man but to kill a man."
Jan 07, 2012 Lea rated it liked it
Intriguing coming-of-age story. Quick and easy read, but I thought it was also an interesting social commentary about those who exist on the bottom and those who keep them there.
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Mar 05, 2015 Phillip rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: high-9-12
3.75 stars
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Although he was never a dedicated student, Paulsen developed a passion for reading at an early age. After a librarian gave him a book to read--along with his own library card--he was hooked. He began spending hours alone in the basement of his apartment building, reading one book after another.

Running away from home at the age of 14 and traveling with a carnival, Paulsen acquired a taste for adve
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“And doing what is good for you is always the worst thing. Even if it works out all right in the end, it is the worst thing when it first happens—just the way things that seem good for you can turn out bad, bad as dirt.” 0 likes
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