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Getting The Girl Hardcover – April 1, 2003


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Lexile Measure: 620L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Arthur A. Levine Books; 1st American ed edition (April 1, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0439389496
  • ISBN-13: 978-0439389495
  • Product Dimensions: 8.6 x 5.7 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.9 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (68 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,132,966 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 8 Up-Cameron Wolfe, first introduced in Fighting Ruben Wolfe (Scholastic, 2001), wants a girlfriend. He wants sex. He wants to separate himself from his brothers' shadow. He wants to find himself and be something more than the underdog in the family. And he doesn't know how to go about getting what he wants. He is attracted to a girl who treats him horribly so he stands outside her house at night, hoping for glimpses of her. He likes his brother Ruben's girlfriend-and she treats him like a human being. When she and Ruben break up, Octavia shows an interest in Cameron and even though his brother already has another girlfriend, he beats up Cameron and Octavia walks away. Ruben has some bigger problems, though, and violence is once again his method of solving them. However, this is Cameron's story, and he discovers that he is much more than he ever thought he could be. His sister is the first to recognize her brother's strengths and helps give him the courage to face himself and his demons. The interaction of the characters is a real strength of this novel. It is a story of family dynamics and coming of age, interspersed with the protagonist's poignant poems and observations. The book, which was first published in Australia, should appeal to readers who want strong male characters such as those in Chris Crutcher's books.
Janet Hilbun, formerly at Sam Houston Middle School, Garland, TX
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist

Gr. 9-12. In this sequel to Fighting Ruben Wolfe (2001), the Wolfe family has settled into a kind of "okayness." For Cameron's brother, Ruben, that means "one girl after another, one fight after another." Only Cameron, who's in adolescence's high season, seems to feel restless and alone as he wanders the streets, pines over disinterested girls, and begins to discover his passion for writing. Then Ruben brings home beautiful Octavia, who, when Ruben predictably dumps her, surprises both brothers by turning to Cameron. Zusak interrupts Cameron's first-person narrative with excerpts from Cameron's writing that, as does much of the book, reads like what it's supposed to be: the words of a talented teenage writer, including some heavy metaphors, self-consciously experimental style, and fresh, inventive images. The authentic emotion behind the words and Cameron's raw experiences are powerful, and teens, especially boys, will easily connect with Cameron's intense yearning to define himself within his family and to discover what romance is all about--to explore, as he puts it, "the edges of words, the loyalty of blood, and the music of girls." Gillian Engberg
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

More About the Author

Markus Zusak was born in 1975 and is the author of five books, including the international bestseller, The Book Thief, which is translated into more than forty languages. First released in 2005, The Book Thief has spent a total of 400 weeks on the New York Times bestseller list, and still remains there eight years after it first came out.

His first three books, The Underdog, Fighting Ruben Wolfe and When Dogs Cry (also known as Getting the Girl), released between 1999 and 2001, were all published internationally and garnered a number of awards and honours in his native Australia, and the USA.

The Messenger (or I am the Messenger), published in 2002, won the 2003 Australian Children's Book Council Book of the Year Award (Older Readers) and the 2003 NSW Premier's Literary Award (Ethel Turner Prize), as well as receiving a Printz Honour in America. It also won numerous national readers choice awards across Europe, including the highly regarded Deutscher Jugendliteratur prize in Germany.

It is The Book Thief, however, that has established Markus Zusak as one of the most successful authors to come out of Australia. To date, The Book Thief has held the number one position at Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk, the New York Times bestseller list, as well as in countries across South America, Europe and Asia. It has also been in the top five bestsellers in the UK and several other territories. It has amassed many and varied awards, ranging from literary prizes to readers choice awards to prizes voted on by booksellers. It was the only book to feature on both the USA and UK World Book Night Lists in 2012, and has now been adapted into a major motion picture.

The Book Thief (the film adaptation) is directed by Emmy Award-winning Brian Percival (Downton Abbey) and was shot in Berlin by Twentieth Century Fox. The cast is headlined by Academy Award winner Geoffrey Rush (Shine, The King's Speech) and Academy Award nominee Emily Watson (Breaking the Waves, Anna Karenina). It also includes exciting new talents Ben Schnetzer, Nico Liersch, and Sophie Nelisse (Monsieur Lazhar), with Nelisse cast as The Book Thief, Liesel Meminger.

The Guardian calls The Book Thief "a novel of breathtaking scope, masterfully told." The New York Times: "Brilliant and hugely ambitious...the kind of book that can be life-changing." The Age: "an original, moving, beautifully written book."
Markus Zusak grew up in Sydney, Australia, and still lives there with his wife and two children.

Amazon Author Rankbeta 

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Customer Reviews

I read this book like once a month.
H. Johnson
He writes with such emotion that regardless of your feeling for the characters you know that they are real feelings that Zusak has brought to the readers surface .
William Sillies
He's in love with a girl who hates his guts, and he doesn't really connect with anyone outside his family.
S. Baskin

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

59 of 60 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on September 8, 2003
Format: Hardcover
The title, front cover, and inside front jacket of this book led me to believe that it would be a shallow story about a boy who wanted to have sex with his brother's girlfriend. For some reason, I took it out anyway and read it. The first few pages seemed to confirm my theory, but I read on.
And changed my mind. Getting the Girl is not the shallow sex story I assumed. It is a moving account of a boy and his life, his relationships--with "the girl", but more importantly, with his family and with himself--and his longing for "okayness." Cameron is a believable character that you will grow to support, ache for, and feel attached to. The supporting characters have depth and truth, the plot is interesting, the setting is not stated but you get a feel for the where and the when.
Cameron grows as a person before your eyes as the author shaves off layer after layer to reveal him on the inside.
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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on April 28, 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Markus Zusak's GETTING THE GIRL, the sequel to FIGHTING RUBEN WOLFE, is a five star effort of YA fiction. The story centers on the life of Cameron Wolfe and his hunger, his desire to get a girl, "the" girl, the one who lives in the house up in Glebe he waits outside of. This coming of age story feels so fresh that I swear my eyes started sweating.

Like so many younger brothers, Cameron is trying to grow in the shadow of his brothers, and it's not working for him. Rubes gets all the girls, accomplishes all the heroics, and stands on his own in the world. Cameron can only "want" that. It takes Octavia, not the girl he thought he was waiting for, but the real thing, to enter his life by surprise and plant the seed of strength in Cameron that he didn't know he had soil for.

At first, Cameron's secret journal writings feel too advanced for the kid we meet, but he grows into them, or they grow into him. Either way, they work well to add a deeper level to this already emotionally complex novel. They reveal a maturity in Cameron that feels right when the end of the story comes around.

If our lives truly are made up of moments, as Cameron says they are, that those moments are the pieces of us, then this story is a piece worth carrying with you, one you'll want to applaud with your noble clapping hands. When the last raindrop has fallen, the question it's asking us might be -- "What moments make up that life of yours?"

Reviewed by Jonathan Stephens
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Teen Reads on July 26, 2004
Format: Paperback
Cameron Wolfe is crushing hard. Her name is Octavia and, in his mind, she is just about perfect. She's beautiful and caring, and can make a harmonica "howl." Octavia doesn't mind having Cameron around, unlike most of the girls Cameron's brother Ruben brings home. That's the trouble: Ruben brought her home first and, unlike most of the other girls who have come and gone, Octavia is the one who dumps Ruben. Ruben acts as if it's no big deal but, in truth, Octavia is the source of Cameron and Ruben's first real conflict, in which Cameron bears the brunt of Ruben's anger. It is Cameron's sister, Sarah, who helps Cameron see that he can be more than just Ruben's shadow --- he is his own person, smart and sensitive with his own unique vision of the world.

Lyrical and evocative, GETTING THE GIRL is not so much about Cameron's crushes as it is about family, self-discovery through writing, and the reality of teen love. Cameron's voice is graceful with a perfect blend of wisdom and naivete, of learning the differences between lusting from afar and real-life dating. Readers will identify with him at the same time they want to strangle him for being so pigheaded, doing things like sitting outside the house of a girl who hates him. The change in Cameron and Ruben's relationship is satisfying and realistic. Those who are looking for a thoughtful yet strong male character will find a perfect match in this elegant sequel to FIGHTING RUBEN WOLFE.

--- Reviewed by Carlie Kraft
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Alyssa on January 25, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition
In my opinion, 'When Dogs Cry' has to be Marcus Zusak's finest book to date. The character of Cameron Wolfe is refreshing and brilliant. Before I started this book, I was sick to death of male leads who had it all: the looks, the charisma, and the drive to get the most out of life. I can't stand characters that seem flawless. Unlike other books like that, Cameron is raw, real and honest.

Marcus Zusak is one of the rare type of authors that can make a character seem so lifelike it's like they're sitting next to you. Each one was entirely believable and I found myself falling in love with the book before the end of the first chapter. The characters all but jumped off the pages.

The main focus of the book is on real hunger. Hunger to want better for yourself. Hunger to be someone. I've never read anything like it before.

Simply put, it's perfection.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By William Sillies on December 11, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I know this is a YA book but it story goes beyond any age, Cam is a person, like most of us that spend their lives trying to find out who they are, who they really are. I think Zusak said it best when he said that our lives are defined by moments and I thank him for sharing this stories moments. He writes with such emotion that regardless of your feeling for the characters you know that they are real feelings that Zusak has brought to the readers surface . There are not many authors that can make you feel like Zusak does, I have read all of his books and feel the same about all of them.

Getting The Girl is not the story that you think it is by the title, it is not about the act of getting the girl it is the journey that Cam spends getting there and what a journey it is that Zusak shares. I would recommend this book to anyone regardless of age.

There is a realness to the story that touches the emotions of the reader and always leaves you with a feeling of "okayness".

Buy the book, read it and plan on reading it again.

Once again, thanks Markus Zusak for sharing your talent
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