Read After the Break or on watpad 🙂
As soon as the monster knew it was going to die, it parted it stomach in two half’s, opening it up through the middle, forging it’s claws inside it’s own skin, and taking out the unborn child inside. The mother then soon died, leaving the child to fend for itself, the stillborn, looked at the mother, and throughly proceeded to eat the raw corpse of flesh that had brought him into this world. Truly the act of a god reborn into the human world.
I’ll update this post as I play more games.
Winger is such a fantastic book, it’s like a never ending roller coaster, and then it plummets you into a spiral of emotions.
I’ll be honest the relationship between Joey and Ryan Dean are one of the best straight-gay friendships I have read in any YA book. I find some people say that Ryan Dean’s constant belligerent portrayal of a straight dude might come of as hate or anti LGBTQ. But I find that’s not the case. I think Smith did a wonderful job of not only making Ryan Dean likable to the LGBTQ community put also an ally. Ryan Dean portrays act of true friendship and kindness towards Joey. Not only that but he’s constantly making an effort to include Joey into what is considered straight acting portrayals of masculinity . Like their record breaking high fives and towards the end of the novel they even chest bump.
Here’s the thing. Ryan Dean constantly portrays Joey as the gay character. And that might be standoffish or weird towards someone who’s actually in that world. Who’s actually gay. We hardly stop and consider people’s feeling and sometimes when our own emotions come in the way people tend to not know how to act and feel weird or awkward towards us. Ryan Dean constantly finds the courage to not only to talk to Joey but feel comfortable around him, and be themselves without compromising. A thing most straight guys find difficult around gay guys. Somehow they feel their masculinity is compromised when their nice to people who are out. But that’s not the case. Ryan Dean finds it in himself that friendship between two people, can and is usually without sexual attraction. Never in the novel does Joey express feelings towards Ryan Dean. That’s not the case. The novel does not focus on the straight gay fantasy. The fantasy in which a gay guy converts or makes another guy fall in love with him just through interactions. Instead it focusses on friendship and coming of age aspects of the whole thing.
Ryan Dean usually expresses himself as feeling awkward around Joey, but usually that comes with a backlash towards himself. Feeling stupid and asking himself why he feels that way. While then pointing out that Joey is just his friend. Even if Ryan Dean constantly get’s into fight’s they are not without purpose. He’s well spirited and kind, he’s heart is always in the right place even. He’s trying to find himself just as the other’s are.
I don’t think Ryan Dean is anti LGBTQ, instead he’s an ally and a teacher to all ally’s out there. How you should act and be around people who are out and trying to live their lives in the public eye. Just be yourself and be nice.
The novel ends with Joey being brutally tied to a tree and beatend to death . As I read the final pages and Joey’s disappeared, all I was thinking. Please don’t be dead. I was happy, reading along the final pages. Instead I got punched in the gut and was left at a stand still. My favorite character was dead. The character I connected with the most was dead. I read the final pages and threw the book out the window. (kidding :P) I did get mad though. Why did Joey had to be placed as a beaten punchline. Oh great the gay guy is dead, typical I thought. I mourned Joey’s dead for a couple of minutes. Sitting there with myself not knowing what to do. Joey’s dead is in fact used so that Ryan Dean could grow. As a person and as an adult. In fact Ryan Dean goes mute for what seems like a couple of months and only talks to his girlfriend Annie in whispers when he needs to. It’s a coping mechanism. I understand. Winger punches Joey into the sidelines and decides it does not need him anymore. In fact I’m iffy on reading the sequel just because of this fact. But why? why exactly does Joe die.
Does he die so we as the reader can understand what Ryan Dean understand at the end. That it’s not only about friendship but about love. Everything you do is about love. Or does he die so that an angry gay kid who’s still hiding his identity can understand that as well. That love rules over everything. Frankly I don’t know, maybe it’s above my pay grade. But it certainly seems like a narrative device to punch the reader in the gut. Right at the end even. It’s not like I didn’t like the book. I think it’s one of my new favorites. It’s just the death of Joey seems unnecessary, and frankly I don’t like it. Winger seems like it just might be the new classic. Our grandsons might go back to this book and look at it like we look at Catcher in the Rye now and analyze it and tore it apart, page by page word by word. I certainly hope so because it’s a great book. It’s a great coming of age story. But it’s just I fell in love with their relationship, I feel in love with Ryan Dean as an ally. And I fell in love with Joey. So much that it hurts. Winger is truly a running down the hill book. You want to stop, but it feel’s too good to do so.