Sunday, November 9, 2014

Book Review: Wonder, by R.J. Palacio

WonderWonder by R.J. Palacio
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Wonder, by R.J. Palacio
★★★★★ and a ♥

Synopsis: "I won't describe what I look like. Whatever you're thinking, it's probably worse."
August ("Auggie") Pullman was born with a facial deformity that prevented him from going to a normal school—until now. He's about to start 5th grade at Beacher Prep, and if you've ever been the new kid then you know how hard that can be. The thing is Auggie's just an ordinary kid... with an extraordinary face. But can he convince his new classmates that he's just like them, despite his appearance? R. J. Palacio has written a spare, warm, uplifting story that will have readers laughing one minute and wiping away tears the next. With wonderfully realistic family interactions (flawed, but loving), lively school scenes, and short chapters, Wonder is accessible to readers of all levels.
In A Sentence: Immediately bumped up as one of my favorites because it made me cry.... a lot.

Why This Book Is Great: Maybe it's that time of month for me, so I'm more emotionally vulnerable, but Man! This book hit me hard! Starting with their dog Daisy (that one hit close to home) to the very end, my eyes were going like a leaky faucet.
I managed to read this book in one sitting (about 5 hours straight), which I haven't been able to do since I was a kid. But from the moment I started, I just couldn't stop, not even for food. It was just so wonderfully written, and you fall in love with Auggie from the very start. He doesn't describe what his face looks like, so you have troubles visualizing it at first, and fall in love with his personality immediately and without judgment. It's not until you reach the part where it's from his sister Via's point of view, that you get a full-blown description of his face and can truly visualize it for the first time. And at first you do what everyone else in the book does; you are horrified, repulsed, and you want to shut that image out. Then you hate yourself for being that way, for doing the one thing you thought you wouldn't do. The book really did make me look within myself and see what I wanted to change. I would rather be more like Summer and how she initially responded, than like every other kid in the school.
I liked how you read the story from different points of view, and how each character was different, but easy to relate to. I especially love the ending (by this point I was sobbing hysterically), and how it just believable enough that you can see it actually happening in real life.
There's Really Nothing Bad To Say About This Book This book is extremely heartwarming. It's one of those stories that truly makes you optimistic about mankind. I kind of want to stop reading The Watchmen (one of the most pessimistic books about mankind ever) so I can keep this good feeling going.
I highly recommend this book, to both children and adults alike. It's a beautiful, thought-provoking story that will make you both laugh and cry. Read it. Seriously, read it. You'll be glad you did.

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