Wednesday, October 10, 2018

"Wonder" by R. J. Palacio

There's a reason this book is super famous and got a movie made of it.  That reason is that it tells a very compelling story about characters you begin to care about quickly.

I am sometimes resistant about very popular, famous books that "everybody is reading now."  I get skeptical and suspicious.  Not sure why -- part of my stubbornly individualistic personality or something.  So it took me a few years to finally read this.  But I'm glad I overcame my inner resistance and read it because it's a very sweet, funny, heart-warming story.  I got tears in my eyes several times, and a few of those spilled down my cheeks at the very end.

Auggie has a rare genetic disorder that caused him to be born with severe facial abnormalities.  Other than that, he's "normal" -- not "developmentally disabled" or physically incapacitated in any way.  He just doesn't look like other people.  His mother has homeschooled him all his life, but when he's ready to enter 5th grade, his parents decide to try enrolling him in a local private school.  Joy and struggles and triumphs and setbacks result.

I loved that this was told from multiple points of view.  Auggie himself was almost a little too perfect to work as a constant narrator, so I was glad that chunks of the story were told by other characters.  It really helped the whole story be more well-rounded and believable.

My son is 11 and in 5th grade, and we homeschool.  So part of the reason this book hit home for me was just imagining if he was Auggie and he faced those same obstacles.

If This was a Movie, I Would Rate It:  PG for some instances of taking God's name in vain, a scary/tense scene, and discussions of physical problems that might be hard for little kids to handle or understand.

8 comments:

  1. I've seen the movie. It was really good, I should read the book.

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    1. Skye, I'd like to see the movie! I like Julia Roberts a lot.

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  2. This review is cool beans. <3

    Yeah, I love the movie and the book about equally. They're both super good.

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    1. Thanks, Eva :-) I got a kick out of them using the phrase "cool beans" in this book because that's a phrase we used to use back in college! One of my friends even had a coffee shop called Cool Beans and Bagels in her hometown.

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  3. I love this book to pieces. The story was very well told and thought out, and I found a tear or two dripping every now and then. I'm glad you enjoyed it.

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    1. Abby Miller, yes, this is definitely a well-told story! And one I think basically everyone could benefit from.

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  4. You're not alone though - I do exactly the same thing. Once I hear there's a movie or book going viral, my gut reaction is to avoid it. :P Probably because I've been so disgusted with things that have gone viral in the past.

    I've seen the movie to this and loved it! (Couldn't get over how amazing Julia Roberts is as an actress... *sigh*) Good to know the book is great as well. :D

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    1. Gabby, it's nice to know I'm not the only reader who's kind of snobby in this way. It's sometimes valid (tried Twilight and didn't care for it) and sometimes not (I was late to the Harry Potter party cuz I was busy being above popular books).

      I really want to see the movie now! Julia Roberts is always so watchable, isn't she?

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