Saturday, March 10, 2012

Wonder (MG)

Wonder. R. J. Palacio. 2012. Random House. 320 pages.

I know I'm not an ordinary ten-year-old kid. I mean, sure, I do ordinary things. I eat ice cream. I ride my bike. I play ball. I have an Xbox. Stuff like that makes me ordinary. I guess. And I feel ordinary. Inside. But I know ordinary kids don't make other ordinary kids run away screaming in playgrounds. I know ordinary kids don't get stared at wherever they go. If I found a magic lamp and I could have one wish, I would wish that I had a normal face that no one ever noticed at all. I would wish that I could walk down the street without people seeing me and then doing that look-away thing. Here's what I think: the only reason I'm not ordinary is that no one else sees me that way.

Oh how I loved, loved, loved R.J. Palacio's novel Wonder. I just LOVED, LOVED, LOVED it. While it would have been a great novel if it had just been told by Auggie (August), I think it's an even better novel because it is told through multiple points of view which gives readers insight into how others see Auggie--and treat Auggie. But. At the same time reminding us all that we ALL have issues. Auggie's sister, Via, for example, is dealing with changes of her own. She's having her own struggles. And because her brother is almost always the most needy or the most obviously needy one in the family, she can feel invisible and taken for granted. Every voice feels authentic in Wonder--which makes it a great read! One that is oh-so-easy to recommend.

So in Wonder, Auggie, a boy with a special face struggles to adapt to his new school, his first real school. His first day of fifth grade is his first day at school ever. He's nervous as can be, as you would expect. How will others treat him? How will teachers treat him for that matter? It won't be easy. Acceptance won't come all that easy. But can Auggie find friends--true friends who love and appreciate him?!

As I said, I just LOVED this one.




Read Wonder

If you're looking for a great coming-of-age read
If you're looking to read the best of the best in MG fiction
If you enjoy realistic fiction with school settings that deal with bullying and friendship
If you enjoy family dramas

S
P
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Don't get attached to the dog. 

© 2012 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

4 comments:

Kailana 9:34 PM  

ah, well, your spoiler makes me think I should avoid this one!

Becky 10:06 PM  

Kailana, it is a great, great book. But yes, *something* happens that I did not see coming...at all. I probably felt as shocked as Auggie himself.

Chris 10:56 PM  

Your spoiler…I've learned to never do that when one of those characters are in a book :p I've had my eye on this one and now that this one got the Becky "love love love" seal of approval, I'll have to get it :)

Laura H 8:35 AM  

Just finished this book last night. Favorite book of 2012...so far. Excellent!

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I'm always happy to hear from you! To help fight spam, comment moderation has been set up for posts older than two days. Feel free to ask me questions or ask for recommendations!

Review Policy

I am interested in reviewing books and audio books. This blog focuses on books written for middle grade on up (essentially 10 to a 110). I review middle grade fiction and young adult fiction (aka tween and teen).

I also review adult books.

I read in a variety of genres including realistic fiction, historical fiction, mystery, romance, science fiction, fantasy, literary fiction, and chick lit. (I've read one western to date.)

I read a few poetry books, a few short story collections, a few graphic novels, a few nonfiction books.

I am especially fond of:

  • Regency romances (including Austen prequels/sequels)
  • Historical fiction set in the Tudor dynasty
  • Historical fiction and nonfiction set during World War II
  • Jewish fiction/nonfiction
  • dystopias
  • apocalyptic fiction
  • science fiction (especially if it involves time travel and alternate realities)
  • fantasy
  • multicultural books and international books

I am not a fan of:

  • sports books
  • horse books
  • dog books if the dog dies (same goes with most pets actually except maybe fish)
  • westerns (if it's a pioneer story with women and children, then maybe)
  • extremely violent books with blood, blood, and more blood

I am more interested in strong characters, well-written, fleshed-out, human characters. Plot is secondary to me in a way. I have to care about the characters in order to care about the plot. That being said, compelling storytelling is something that I love. I love to become absorbed in what I'm reading.

If you're interested in sending me a review copy of your book, I'm happy to hear from you. Email me at laney_po AT yahoo DOT com.

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2) I give all books at least fifty pages.
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4) In all of my reviews I strive for honesty. My reviews are my opinions--so yes, they are subjective--you should know my blog will feature both negative and positive reviews.
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