Jack Gantos

Jack Gantos
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Jack Gantos has written books for people of all ages, from picture books and middle-grade fiction to novels for young adults and adults. His works include Hole in My Life, a memoir that won the Michael L. Printz and Robert F. Sibert Honors, Joey Pigza Swallowed the Key, a National Book Award Finalist, and Joey Pigza Loses Control, a Newbery Honor book.
 
Jack was born in Mount Pleasant, Pennsylvania, and when he was seven, his family moved to Barbados. He attended British schools, where there was much emphasis on reading and writing, and teachers made learning a lot of fun. When the family moved to south Florida, he found his new classmates uninterested in their studies, and his teachers spent most of their time disciplining students. Jack retreated to an abandoned bookmobile (three flat tires and empty of books) parked out behind the sandy ball field, and read for most of the day. The seeds for Jack’s writing career were planted in sixth grade, when he read his sister’s diary and decided he could write better than she could. He begged his mother for a diary and began to collect anecdotes he overheard at school, mostly from standing outside the teachers’ lounge and listening to their lunchtime conversations. Later, he incorporated many of these anecdotes into stories.
 
While in college, he and an illustrator friend, Nicole Rubel, began working on picture books. After a series of well-deserved rejections, they published their first book, Rotten Ralph, in 1976. It was a success and the beginning of Jack’s career as a professional writer. Jack continued to write children’s books and began to teach courses in children’s book writing and children’s literature. He developed the master’s degree program in children’s book writing at Emerson College and the Vermont College M.F.A. program for children’s book writers. He now devotes his time to writing books and educational speaking. He lives with his family in Boston, Massachusetts.


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Jack Gantos thanks 2012 Newbery Committee

Jack Gantos thanks the 2012 Newbery Committee for selecting DEAD END IN NORVELT as the winner!

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Jack Gantos Talks Audiobooks

Bestselling YA author Jack Gantos talks about audiobooks and the challenges of reading his book Dead End in Norvelt aloud.

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Dead End in Norvelt Book Trailer

Has Jack's summer hit a dead end?

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Author Jack Gantos talks about his book Dead End in Norvelt

Bestselling young adult author Jack Gantos discusses his book, Dead End in Norvelt, reading audio books and other favorite topics.

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From Norvelt To Nowhere - Audiobook Excerpt

Listen to an excerpt from the audio book edition of From Norvelt to Nowhere.

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Author Jack Gantos on his book I Am Not Joey Pigza--Author Interview

Listen to this author interview and hear author Jack Gantos talk about his children's book I Am Not Joey Pigza. In this installment of Gantos' Newbery Honor-winning middle-grade fiction series, Joey Pigza's good-for-nothing dad pops back into his life. After a lucky lotto win, Carter Pigza has a crazy new outlook on life, and he's even changed his name to Charles Heinz. He thinks Joey and his mom should become new people, too.

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Dead End in Norvelt by Jack Gantos--Audiobook Excerpt

Listen to Jack Gantos read from his Newbery Medal-winning children's book Dead End in Norvelt in this audiobook excerpt. Melding the entirely true and the wildly fictional, Dead End in Norvelt is a novel about an incredible two months for a kid named Jack Gantos, whose plans for vacation excitement are shot down when he is "grounded for life" by his feuding parents, and whose nose spews bad blood at every little shock he gets.

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books
by the author

The Key That Swallowed Joey Pigza
Joey Pigza
Jack Gantos
Farrar, Straus and Giroux

The fifth and final book in the groundbreaking Joey Pigza series brings the beloved chronicle of this wired, wacky, and wonderful boy to a crescendo of chaos...


Available In:

Book eBook
Available 9/2/2014
What Would Joey Do?
Joey Pigza
Jack Gantos
Square Fish

Sequel to Joey Pigza Loses Control, a Newbery Honor Book Are they flirting or fighting? This is Joey Pigza's question when the fireworks suddenly start to...


Available In:

Book eBook
Joey Pigza Swallowed the Key
Joey Pigza
Jack Gantos
Square Fish

In this National Book Award finalist, Joey Pigza tries hard to be a good kid trapped in a wired body.


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Book eBook
Joey Pigza Loses Control
Joey Pigza
Jack Gantos
Square Fish

The sequel to Joey Pigza Swallowed the Key, a National Book Award Finalist When Joey Pigza meets his dad for the first time in years, he meets a grown-up...


Available In:

Book eBook
I Am Not Joey Pigza
Joey Pigza
Jack Gantos
Square Fish

Joey’s world is turned upside down when his deadbeat dad wins the lottery.


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Book eBook
Rotten Ralph's Rotten Family
Rotten Ralph Rotten Readers
Jack Gantos; pictures by Nicole Rubel
Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Rotten Ralph’s owner, Sarah, is fed up with her red rascal’s behavior. Ralph is tired of Sarah trying to change him. He misses his cat family, which never made...


Available In:

Book
From Norvelt to Nowhere
Norvelt Series
Jack Gantos
Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Young Jack accompanies Miss Volker on a wild pursuit of the chief suspect in the Norvelt murders, while being pursued themselves.


Available In:

Book Audio Book eBook
Dead End in Norvelt
Norvelt Series
Jack Gantos
Square Fish

Dead End in Norvelt is the winner of the 2012 Newbery Medal for the year’s best contribution to children’s literature and the Scott O’Dell Award for Historical...


Available In:

Book Audio Book eBook
Hole in My Life

Jack Gantos
Square Fish

In the summer of 1971, Jack Gantos was an aspiring writer looking for adventure, cash for college tuition, and a way out of a dead-end job. For ten thousand...


Available In:

Book eBook
Rotten Ralph Helps Out (My Readers Level 3)
Rotten Ralph Rotten Readers
Jack Gantos; Illustrated by Nicole Rubel
Square Fish

Rotten Ralph’s attempts to help Sarah with her school project on ancient Egypt are now repackaged in a brand-new format for beginning readers.


Available In:

Book
Three Strikes for Rotten Ralph
Rotten Ralph Rotten Readers
Jack Gantos; pictures by Nicole Rubel
Farrar, Straus and Giroux

On the Flying Squirrels baseball team, Rotten Ralph dreams of becoming a superstar but ignores Sarah's example of working hard to learn the fundamentals....


Available In:

Book
Practice Makes Perfect for Rotten Ralph
Rotten Ralph Rotten Readers
Jack Gantos; Pictures by Nicole Rubel
Square Fish

"Themes of jealousy, boasting, cheating, and getting one's comeuppance are all touched on ij this second book in the easy-reader series." --School Library...


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Book
The Love Curse of the Rumbaughs

Jack Gantos
Square Fish

Love is a terrible and wonderful thing.


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Book eBook
Desire Lines

Jack Gantos
Farrar, Straus and Giroux BYR Paper

Sixteen-year-old Walker has discovered something potentially scandalous—two of his female classmates are having an affair. It is a secret he has no problem...


Available In:

Book eBook
Best in Show for Rotten Ralph
Rotten Ralph Rotten Readers
Jack Gantos; Pictures by Nicole Rubel
Farrar, Straus and Giroux

“To thine own self be true.” The cat show is coming to town and Rotten Ralph is hungry for glory – and desperate to defeat his perfect cousin Percy,...


Available In:

Book
Jack Adrift: Fourth Grade Without a Clue
Jack Henry
Jack Gantos
Square Fish

From the Newbery Medal–winning author of Dead End in Norvelt, eight side-splitting stories about a boy who is doing his best to keep his head above water As...


Available In:

Book eBook
Rotten Ralph Feels Rotten
Rotten Ralph Rotten Readers
Jack Gantos; Pictures by Nicole Rubel
Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Rotten to the core! When Sarah serves up a healthy, home-cooked meal chock-full of fruits and vegetables, Rotten Ralph turns up his nose and refuses to eat....


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Book
Jack on the Tracks
Jack Henry
Jack Gantos
Square Fish

From the Newbery Medal–winning author of Dead End in Norvelt, nine semi-autobiographical stories that will make you laugh so hard it hurts...


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Book eBook
Jack's Black Book
Jack Henry
Jack Gantos
Square Fish

From the Newbery Medal–winning author of Dead End in Norvelt,  the uproarious final volume of Jack Henry stories


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Book eBook
Jack's New Power
Jack Henry
Jack Gantos
Square Fish

From the Newbery Medal–winning author of Dead End in Norvelt, life for Jack Henry in a brand-new place is filled with the same old craziness...


Available In:

Book eBook
Heads or Tails
Jack Henry
Jack Gantos
Square Fish

From the Newbery Medal–winning author of Dead End in Norvelt, eight more hysterical semi-autobiographical Jack Henry stories about a sixth grader’s trials and...


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Book eBook
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