[Book Review]: Wonder







R.J. Palacio








     Wonder is a standalone YA contemporary novel. The book centers around a main character named August ("Auggie") Pullman and his life in living with a facial deformity. Auggie has been homeschooled his whole life because of his facial deformity, and, therefore, hasn't been in contact with large groups of children his age. Now about to start 5th grade, his parents want him to go to mainstream school

     So begins the story of an ordinary boy with an extraordinary face. Auggie must come face-to-face with some of his peers and convince him that he's just like them, despite his appearance.



Review: I'll be completely honest: when my teacher gestured to the new books she received that lined the window sills, Wonder being one of them, I took one look at the summary, tsked, and put it down. I didn't think a story that centered around a fifth-grader could appeal to my 17-year-old taste at all. It wasn't until my friend decided to borrow it and came in the next day (having finished it in one night) imploring that I read this and handing me the copy that she borrowed that I actually gave this book a second thought. I sat down and read it.

I wasn't able to read the book in one night (which isn't saying much considering I've only read one book in less than a day before), but I certainly finished it in less than a week which has somewhat pulled me out of my reading slump. Here are a couple of things that I liked:

1.) It's such an emotional book. August knows that people look at him strangely, he knows that there's that "split second" when people first see him in which they break their composure out of surprise.
a.) Even his sister, Vivian, I couldn't help feeling sorry for: she knows she isn't supposed to be bitter about August being the center of attention, but she can't help but think of the "favorite child" comment their Aunt made.
3.) The writing wasn't overly-pretentious. It was candid.



Final Verdict: Four stars. All in all, great book. It's such an easy and quick read, yet it retains heavy emotional appeal.

Also, I learned my lesson: don't judge a book by its cover (or in this cause, its simple summary).