• Pinned

Winner of:

* YALSA's 'Popular Paperbacks For Young Adults' Nominee
* Texas Library Association's Tayshas Reading List
* Capitol Choices 'Bookworthy Books For Children' Nominee
* AudioFile Magazine 'Earphones' Award
* Brodart's TOP Young Adult Titles list
* The Quills Award nominee - Teen Category
* ForeWord's Audiobook of the Year Award - Silver Medal

Pinned follows Ivan Korske and Bobby Zane, two high school seniors, as they embark on the most important winter of their lives in a quest for the New Jersey state high school wrestling championship.

Ivan Korske is the pride of Lennings, a rural town tucked away in the farmlands of western Jersey, and the odds-on favorite to be crowned state champion in the 129-pound weight class. For Ivan, the stakes are impossibly high. A state championship fulfills a promise he made to his mother before she passed away nine months earlier and will, perhaps, stem his father's continued withdrawal from life. But mostly, Ivan dreams of getting a scholarship to a college far from his dreary hometown. To him, anything short of the title is failure.

In Short Hills, a wealthy town on the other side of the state, Bobby Zane protects his younger brother Christopher from the fallout of their parents' impending divorce, while searching for comfort from Carmelina Carrillo, a girl from a depressed part of Newark. Despite the distractions from the intense pressures of adolescent love and the family's breakup, Bobby realizes his quest for the coveted 129-pound state title may be his only hope for salvation.

Pinned chronicles Ivan and Bobby's season-long efforts toward overcoming forces within and beyond their control toward a title that only one of them can capture!


Wrestling has been a part of Alfred C. Martino's life for thirty years. He has competed on the midget, junior high, high school (Millburn, NJ), and collegiate (Duke '86) levels, as well as coached Millburn's youth program for five years. He has worked as a staff reporter for the El Segundo Herald (CA) and The Beach Reporter, a combined weekly circulation of 80,000, covering high school and professional sports, including the local high school wrestling teams. He currently lives in Jersey City, NJ.

Seminar at Washington Township (NJ) High School - Part 1
Seminar at Washington Township (NJ) High School - Part 2
Washington Township High School Video Ad For Seminar



Mark Shanahan, a New York City resident, has appeared at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, off-Broadway, and on film and television. In addition to be a playwright, he had provided voices for commercials, animation, museum tours, and radio programs.


Women's Journal
"Sexually frank and with a surprising stop-short ending, Pinned puts both shoulder blades to the mat."

Keri Mikulski, author of Head Games and Stealing Bases
"Here are five reasons why I loved Pinned
1. Plot - Pinned is not your typical sporty story. In fact, the novel follows two polar opposite wrestlers throughout the course of their senior wrestling season. Although both characters are dealing with diverse issues, Ivan and Bobby love of the sport of wrestling and dream of winning a state title.
2. Voice - Alfred nails the voice of Bobby and Ivan. I've been surrounded by wrestlers for the past twenty years or so and both characters are spot on.
3. Characters - Not only did I feel empathy for both Bobby and Ivan, I couldn't shake them. When I was away from the novel, I thought about the characters and their story. So much so, I couldn't wait to crack open the book again.
4. Fearless Writing - Without giving away too much, Alfred's writing is raw and real. Martino tackles teenage issues head on. His honesty is commendable.
5. Sensational Sports Action - Following both wrestlers who could end up going head-to-head at the end of the novel is genius--a perfect recipe for a page-turning action packed 'can't put down' novel.

If you ever wondered what it's like to compete in the grueling sport of wrestling or if you just want to crack open an amazing sports story, Pinned is your book. Good stuff."

'Ms. Yingling Reads' Blog (msyinglingreads.blogspot.com), Karen Yingling, Middle School Librarian
"This was one very intense book about wrestling. Cutting weight, running until you puke--wrestling in all its glory. I was riveted, however, and devastated when the ending...well, not to ruin it for the types who LIKE the lady-or-the-tiger endings, but I about screamed when the book ended at the beginning of the state champion meet. I was reading avidly to see if Bobby or Ivan won, and we never find out! Arg! Very good though."

Rulon Gardner, U.S. Olympic Gold Medalist - Greco-Roman Wrestling
"A great show of the drive and intensity necessary to be a champion."

Chris Crutcher, author
"Pinned is a tough, savvy tale that melds the hard, tough sport of wrestling with the hard, tough lives of the two young men who seem locked into each others' destinies. This one will keep you reading. Alfred Martino plays this story like a fine violin."

"Ivan Korske and Bobby Zane, seniors and wrestlers at two very different New Jersey high schools, are vying for the state championship in the same weight class. Bobby is a rich suburban boy with battling parents and a possibly pregnant girlfriend, while Ivan who lives in a small farming town, is grieving for his recently deceased mother and struggling with college choices. Alternating chapters reflect the boys' viewpoints, including their athletic drives and skills."

Buzzy Reviews
"These are two very different high school seniors that need to win the New Jersey State Championship. It is an amazing tale that will move you to tears. After all; only one can win. Buzzable and Buzzalicious and everything else you'd care to think of; please don't hurt me. I adored it!."


Author: Alfred C. Martino

Narrator: Mark Shanahan

ISBN: 9781593163228

SRP: $29.95

Length: 6:40:00

Item No: LL341

Available on the following websites: Amazon, Apple, Audible, AudioBookStore, Audiobooks, Blackstone, Catalist, Epic!, Kobo, Libro.fm, Mackin, Overdrive, StoryTel, Tumblebooks.

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Tags: teen, wrestling, high school divorce, friendships