In Wonder by R. J. Palacio, August (Auggie) Pullman’s favorite things are anything Star Wars related and his Xbox. As a result, he sounds like every other 10-year-old boy out there except for one major factor—he has some pretty jarring facial deformities. Auggie has been homeschooled all of his life, due to the numerous surgeries he has had to have over the years. Now that he will be starting fifth grade, his parents think that it is time for him to start at a regular school. He is both excited and worried at the prospect of this idea. While he longs to play sports and make friends like every kid, once he starts at Beecher Prep he quickly becomes an easy target for the class bully. He also is very close with his older sister, Via, who has just started high school and is having her own issues with friendships and finding herself. I think that the author was very smart to have the different chapters of the book told from various points of view—not just from Auggie’s and Via’s perspectives, but also from several of his classmates. I also believe that this book teaches a lot of good lessons on how to be a good friend and a good sibling.
Book reviewed by Julie D., Elementary School Liaison