When a book is this original, this heartfelt, this inspiring, this real, I find myself babbling in clich??: Wonder is truly wondrous.
Auggie Pullman is 10. He???s about to start fifth grade after being homeschooled, and he???s more than a little nervous: ???I know I???m not an ordinary ten-year-old kid. I mean, sure, I do ordinary things. ??? 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.??? Born with a genetic facial deformity, Auggie has survived 27 operations since he was born. ???I won???t describe what I look like. Whatever you???re thinking, it???s probably worse.???
In a world where being even a little different can cause a lot of heartbreak, Auggie???s entry into a New York City private middle school is a shocker ??? for both him and everyone around him. Wonder follows Auggie through his public debut as he navigates beyond his comfort zone, finding new friends and allies, experiencing an independence he (nor his family) dreamed of, and learning who to trust and who to let go. [The NON-Wonder Award, by the way, unquestionably goes to a wealthy parent (who is vice president of the school board, no less) who Photoshops Auggie out of the class picture and even shares it with other parents!]
R.J. Palacio enhances Auggie???s story with multiple points of view ??? his friends, his sister, his sister???s new boyfriend, his sister???s ex-best friend even! ??? to create a richly detailed, utterly believable record of one extraordinary boy???s one unforgettable year. Note to parents: don???t read (or listen, as I did ??? so convincingly narrated by Diana Steele, Nick Podehl, and Kate Rudd) in crowded places, unless you???re okay with being an exhibitionist (pack Kleenex!).
The end during the principal's speech & the woods scene are two moments that I sat perfectly still for so I wouldn't miss a word.
The principal's speech.
Yes. I started listening with my children but couldnt wait for them. I listened without them and finished in 2 days. It's beautiful.
I bought the book for friends as well.
My only complaint: the cartoonish narration detracted from this otherwise sublime and poignant story. A wonderful book– one that everyone should read.
I haven't read the print version.
"One Good Dog" and "the Dog Who Danced" both by Susan Wilson. They both show the goodness and kindness of people and the difference that makes to the lives of others. Also, that from sad situations good things can happen.
I listened to this with my 11 year old son. We both enjoyed this and in this current societal environment, it's a good lesson about understanding differences, empathy and acceptance. I'm glad we were introduced to August.
Auggie's character is delivered in such a way that it leaves me feeling as if I am sitting in my classroom at work with my favorite student in the room. He is absolutely believable. Not just the text, but the delivery of it.
Auggie is my favorite character of course! His character is deep and his soft raspy voice left me longing for more time with him.
Diana Steele seems to actually become Auggie in my mind's eye. It's hard to imagine him with any better voice. Her approach colors him as vulnerable yet persistent and hopeful. Her performance is fresh and raw.
As a Special Education elementary school teacher, I work with the "Auggies" of this world every day, and the interactions between peers at school, as well as Auggies reactions towards his day to day reality was spot on. Absolutely beautiful and heart-warming story.
Thank you R. J. Palacio and Random House for producing such a quality piece of work that teaches valuable social lessons. I will incorporate this book into student's lives. This book will make a difference!
Absolutely! Kate Rudd is a fantastic narrator, and the juxtaposition of the character voices really lets the reader feel they are with the characters.
Auggie comparing his face to the Ugly Dolls line... Humor in a rough situation.
Miranda calling Auggie on the phone to check up on him, so cute.
A fantastic story that most adults can relate to their childhood - weren't we all teased one way or another? But the perspective and attitude is inspiring in this book. A great listen with fantastic performances :)
The personality really comes out and voice changes help loads as there are many characters.
Yes-it's a great story for all ages, but I would not recommend the audible version. The narration for August was so irritating that I skipped those portions and read those on Kindle.
Loved the different viewpoints of all of the characters and their experiences of life with August.
The narration for August was very distracting. Maybe they were trying to help the reader experience some of the aspects of August's differences through audio, since we don't have a complete visual idea of how he looks; however, that is where our imaginations step in.
I am a Speech Pathologist and daily work with children who do not fit "within the norm," but even then, I don't always have a true understanding of what life at home is like for the families of the children with whom I work. This book helped to give me more of an appreciation for the family dynamics, but most of all, I loved that the message of the book is not to feel sorry for August or his family. Many families with children with special needs would prefer others to understand that they have come to accept this as their "new normal" with a loved and valued child.
I enjoyed just about every single word in this book. It's heart warming, moving, funny. The characters sound like real life kids. The references to pop culture also lend to making this book quite unique. I even love the art on the book jacket which was what first drew me to this book.
Auggie's fifth grade weekend outdoor trip-- now that was a good scene.
I loved Jack's narration the most. His Brooklyn accent fit his character.
This book made me laugh and cry, sometimes at the same time.
Every middle school child should read this. Had I read this at 12, it would've had a deep effect on me.