Saturday, 18 July 2015

Book Talk #9: Wonder by R.J Palacio

So going into this book I thought I'd be a bit too old for it. However seeing the amazing reviews and ratings on Goodreads I knew that I must read it.
'My name is August.
I won't describe what I look like. Whatever you're thinking, it's probably worse.'

Going into Wonder I did not expect to like it as much as I did. I never expected the book to teach me about both the courage and cruelty of children and that one little boy can change the views of many.

August is a 10 year old boy who has a severe facial deformity. August has also never been to school. 'Wonder' follows August's first year at middle school.
The beginning of middle school seemed to be tough for August as he deals with a lot of bullying and confidence issues, as people stare at him, talk about him and laugh at him. We also have an insight into his past. The beginning of the book, in Auggie's perspective gives us an insight on the challenges people with facial deformities face and how affected they are by what happens. Despite this August manages to make a few friends and remains his bright, funny self... not a victim.

The rest of the book changes perspective. The multiple perspectives adds a great dimension to the book as we not only see how August is affected by his deformity but how the people around him, his family, friends and strangers are affected by it.  We see these through the perspective of his older sister, Via and August's two best friends, Summer and Jack, in which all three we see a different side of August but also form a bond to. 

Palacio gives us an insight on the challenges people with deformities face and how other people affect them, whether it is with looks or words, good or bad.

'Wonder's' messages are amazing, too:
- 'There are always going to be jerks in the world.'
- 'Whenever you can, try to act a little kinder than is necessary- the world really would be a better place.'

Overall, Palacio wrote the book beautifully. Her amazing writing allowed me to form bonds with the characters and also take home amazing messages, despite not experiencing any of these experiences first hand.

I gave Wonder: 4/5 stars.

Have you read Wonder? What do you think about it?


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