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Kid Konnection: Wonder

February 18, 2012

Ten year old August Pullman was born with several facial abnormalities, so he looks different than most people..  He’s had to have two or three surgeries a year, so his mom has always home schooled him.  Now that he’s entering middle school, his mom thinks it’s time for him to attend school and he agrees to do so with some trepidation.

Wonder, by R. J. Palacio, is the story of August’s fifth grade year and it is an outstanding book!  Told from the points of view of August, his sister, his sister’s boyfriend, two of August’s new friends, and a friend of his sister’s, readers discover quickly how August’s outward appearance affects him and those around him.  I loved this book and want to thrust it into the hands of every young person I see.

August may look different than everyone else, but he doesn’t feel any different, so he’s hurt when people stare, call names, recoil, or make fun of him.  He has the same wants and needs as every other kid, but does need a little understanding.  Seeing things through his eyes was very thought provoking.  August is a great character and he stayed in my thoughts long after I finished the book.

One of the things I loved about this book is the different points of view and how honest they felt.  August’s sister loves him but also resents him at times.  One of his friends says something he really doesn’t mean in an attempt to be cool.  Readers see how much a small kindness can mean and how deeply a snide remark can hurt.

In the end, things are tied up pretty neatly, but that’s okay since this is a middle school book.  Wonder is a fabulous story that will teach readers a thing or two.  It would make a great book for a classroom or book club because it explores many topics worth discussing.  Check out the trailer:

For more children’s books reviews, go to Booking Mama’s feature, Kid Konnection. If you’d like to participate in Kid Konnection and share a post about anything related to children’s books (picture, middle grade, or young adult) from the past week,  leave a comment as well as a link on her site.

Review copy provided by Amazon Vine.  I am an Indiebound Affiliate.

14 Comments leave one →
  1. February 18, 2012 8:53 am

    I sent myself an email to order this one immediately! Believe it or not, when I worked at one of our elementary schools which was only 4th and 5th grade, our students were very caring and empathetic. We had all sorts of students and many were taken care of by the more “mainstream” student. It really make our hearts swell with love and pride. It was much easier to explain differences and deal with them on a daily basis when our student population was between 390-450. Now that I work in a Middle School setting that is 5-8 I think this would be a totally different situation. I love to offer books that make them THINK!!

  2. February 18, 2012 9:00 am

    I’ve heard so many great things about this book! I like the message it sends, too.

  3. February 18, 2012 3:06 pm

    I devoured this book earlier in the week and also loved the honest glimpses into Auggie’s world (and feelings and actions of those connected to him). This is a beautiful book. I predict it’s next years Schneider Family Award winner.

  4. February 18, 2012 4:11 pm

    I definitely think this is a book for the masses to read.

  5. February 18, 2012 6:02 pm

    Entertainment Weekly loved this book so between the both of you, I can’t wait to read it.

  6. February 18, 2012 6:40 pm

    Your review (and the trailer) convinced us! Just ordered it.

  7. February 19, 2012 6:46 am

    Hmmm, I think I’ll add this to my TBR list. “Outstanding” is so difficult to pass up. 🙂

  8. February 19, 2012 10:09 am

    I’ve been reading great things about this book but was scared to buy it. I worried that it wouldn’t live up to the attention it’s been getting. After reading your post and a few of the comments, I think it’s time to buy it. Great review.

  9. February 19, 2012 6:28 pm

    You’ve gotten me even more excited to read this one! Love the message and it sounds like it’s a great read for all ages.

  10. February 19, 2012 8:44 pm

    This sounds like a book I need to get and keep for my son.

  11. February 19, 2012 9:51 pm

    That’s such an awesome cover and the premise sounds really great. I think I’ll pick this one up. Thanks for the recommendation!

  12. February 20, 2012 2:59 am

    I heard so much good about this book! It was nice hearing your thoughts on it too, I’m so happy you enjoyed it. I’ll HAVE to read this one.

  13. February 20, 2012 10:31 am

    This is a book that I have been thinking about reading for some time now. It sounds like it’s a very potent little story with a character that you can really root for. I am glad that you loved this one, and have been thinking that Melissa and I might enjoy it. Fantastic review on this one today. I think you really did a good job highlighting all the important elements of the story.

  14. February 21, 2012 4:35 pm

    I’ve been seeing this book cover around and was intrigued. I’m certainly going to have to read it now. Thanks for a great review.

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