Wonder by R.J. Palacio

Sep 21, 2011 by

August (Auggie) Pullman was born with a facial deformity that prevented him from going to a mainstream school—until now. He’s about to start 5th grade at Beecher 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 appearances?

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.


Can I just say right now that I loved Wonder by R.J. Palacio? I want EVERYONE to read it. (That’s right, I shouted!) In fact, if it were out right now I’d be buying copies to give to other people to read. I loved it, it was so sweet and real. It’s sad, funny, inspiring, infuriating, eye opening and awesome. I’d like to think that it wouldn’t have been me that would have reacted to seeing Auggie for the first time, but I know I’d be lying.

When Auggie first talks to us, he doesn’t even describe himself. He says, “I won’t describe what I look like. Whatever you’re thinking, it’s probably worse.” Now, doesn’t that just make you think and makes your heart cry out for him? I know I was thinking it’s not that bad but even with the descriptions it’s hard to imagine.

My sister had a cleft lip and palate, so I have an idea of what the stares and whispers are like. She had many surgeries including the hip bone one. It’s better and still noticeable, but I can’t begin to imagine what Auggie went through. I guess it’s like he said, he’s used to it.

At times I was thinking that they were a little too well versed for them to be fifth graders, but then I realized I was wrong. Mainly, because I don’t actually hang out with fifth graders so how would I know how they spoke? And also, even if they did speak like adults, they still behaved like kids. (I thought about all the times they retold a story and they definitely were kids: “He was like, “what”and you were like, “yep” and I was like, “nooooo” haha.)

Yeah, they behaved like kids, and sometimes kids could be so cruel. The whole ‘no touch’ thing just made me so sad. The lab scene incident almost had me in tears, and that almost never happens in a book (OK, I did get extremely choked up at the end of the Book Thief). Oh, and don’t even get me started on the overheard conversation. That just about tore my heart out. No one wants to here stuff like that.

That Julian, I was so mad at him. But he was so realistic as well. It wasn’t always the kids, sometimes the adults could be so infuriating as well. And the sad part is, it could very well happen in real life (which totally sucks).

I can’t imagine what it would be like for the parents. I do know that the parents in this book were awesome. I loved their humor and attention to their kids. I think Via made it much easier for them, but they handled it well.

Normally I would not have liked a book that jumped through so many perspectives, but it really worked here, it did. Takes the guesswork out of trying to figure out why someone did something. Like when Via is explaining how her mother reacted to the death of someone, I could just see her mother on the floor, sobbing. And I liked when Summer didn’t give in to peer pressure at the party. <–highlight to view

So do I recommend Wonder? Yes, very much!! I know this review stinks (and I’m sorry about that), but it’s hard for me to express just how much I loved this book. Earlier I said that kids can be cruel, well they can also change and be inspiring. It’s another reason why I loved this book. And it’s clean enough for all ages as well. It’s an eye opener for any age. Makes you think twice about how you treat people.

Oh, and I LOVE the cover. Don’t you? It’s perfect. Though they should have just printed it with awards on it, because it deserves to win.

Publication Date:02/14/2012
Trim Size:5-1/2 x 8-1/4
List Price:$15.99
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  1. Your review made me laugh out loud. I love your enthusiasm and I’m definitely sold. Your review is not bad!! It was great. I could read your emotions. I’ll have to get this one. It sounds like a winner.

    • Anonymous Guy

      This book, Wonder, is very funny in the beginning by how he was born, But it’s very sad…

  2. Peeptastic

    Thanks Alexis! I can’t wait for you to read it. I actually troll places looking for reviews of it. Haha.

  3. Books about kids being mean to other kids always make me teary but this one sounds like a worthwhile read. And isn’t it crazy how sometimes the books we love the most are the hardest to write reviews for? Because on the one hand you want to rehash the entire plot so people know how awesome it is but then you also want to just spend eighty-two sentences saying nothing besides “I love this book!! You need to read it!!”

  4. Hi there Alexis !!! My name is Noor and i’m from the United Arab Emirates but part of me is Malaysian cuz my mom is !! i’m 12 and i’m in the 8th grade !!! i love your review of the book !! i bought it maybe a month ago and am now in part three where Summer talks !! and everything u said is TOTALLY right !! i love your review and i hope we could contact each other !!
    Please add me on facebook ! i will soon have a twitter account and if u have one i will follow you !!
    I hope we could be friends !!

    With SO MUCH love ….

    Noor <3

  5. sorry i wrote Alexis by mistake haha !!


  1. Win Wonder or Insurgent (Preorder)! | Attack of the Book! - [...] made it to my list of favorites (Bonus: It’s not a series!!). You can read my review of it …
  2. It’s Here, It’s Out Today: Wonder by RJ Palacio! | Attack of the Book! - [...] to read it, you should. Even if you don’t love it, you will like it. If you haven’t yet …

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