Say something about yourself!
I have to admit that when I first started listening, the narrator's interpretation of Augie's voice wa a little hard to get used to. But the narrator hit just the right note, because a kid with a severe facial deformity WOULD have trouble speaking. In retrospect, this was perfect because it gave me a hint of the feeling other characters have upon meeting Augie. His face makes people uncomfortable--to say the least.
I found this masterful book after reading a NY Times rave review. I work in the YA market, so I need to stay current with the best books. Although this is supposed to be a middle grade novel, I'm giving it out to many of my adult friends for Christmas.
The characters, each and every one, are so beautifully realized. You will root for Augie, this very funny, very cool, but very damaged kid. You will love the unlikely friends he makes and boo for his villainous enemies. You will love the way Augie wins people over.
Parents might be interested to know that, unlike many of today's popular middle grade and YA fiction, the parents in this book are caring, dedicated parents. They aren't drunk, they aren't on drugs, they aren't brain-dead. I loved how they struggle to do their best for both their teenage daughter as well as for Augie, who naturally soaks up most of the attention.
I have given this book to a fifth grader, who devoured it. I've given it to a junior in high school, who devoured it. I cannot wait until the next RJ Palacio book comes out.
Well, I have to admit, it's an easy one: you will fall in love with the main character, Augie, an extremely ugly duckling who will never turn into a swan. You love him for the strides he boldly takes in a world that idealizes beauty.
Having said that, I also fell in love with Augie's sister, his wise principal, and all the friends who love him from the start--and those who learn the true meaning of beauty at the end.
I laughed a lot in this book. Palacio "gets" fifth graders and teens. I never cried, but I do recall a few times when I had that smile on my face, the one that's just before you cry because you're happy.
Buy this book. Give it to your friends. Give it to your parents. Give it to your siblings. Give it to you mailman. This is a wonderful, wonderful book! It's about a fifth grader--but this is a book for every age.
Ranks as one of the most listened to in our household, adults and children.
Augie, for sure. He's honest, resilient and funny.
Too many to name. Some scenes are painful but the characters and readers make the story very listenable. The hero of this story is just so darn human and like able.
Probably something from the great quotes they use to begin each section.
Have listened to this story multiple times and will many more.
I thought Wonder was really...wonderful. It was right up there with other well-done audiobooks.
I enjoyed the way the story unraveled from different perspectives. Just when I was thinking, "now why did he react that way?" the narrator would shift and all would be revealed.
I really enjoyed Augie. How could you not love him? What a great tool for teaching kids about empathy and looking beyond someone's appearance. I thought he was a very believable kid. Not melodramatic, not pitiable, not too triumphant. Just relatable.
Fifth grade is not for the faint of heart.
Some of the narrators were stronger than others. I didn't like that some of them made Augie's voice sound like he was developmentally disabled.
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.
I focus on fiction, sci-fi, fantasy, science, history, politics and read a lot. I try to review everything I read.
This is a very positive story with heart and love and friendship, family and community, fear and courage, hugs and kisses, dogs, and an uplifting ending. It is heartwarming, yet ultimately quite hollow. Stories that deeply move people, and make a real difference, must possess balance, with realistic fear or pain or loss to make the positive aspects truly powerful. This is a written for a young audience, but that does not justify saccharin. Kids can appreciate, and actually need, this balance.
There was one brief interlude by the character Miranda that borders on some realistic balance. I wish the rest of the book had the real heart glimpsed in these few pages.
I had hoped this would be a powerful, moving, and transformative story; instead it is a simplistic positive story.
Each of us face the challenge of being treated cruelly and unfairly at some point in our lives and yet we know there are those whose challenges far exceed our own. Thankfully we have opportunity to chose kindness - a caring kindness that respects the true nature of our shared humanity. Often we find rich return as our heart is open to the delight of truly knowing another whom others may initially avoid. and valuing the shared
What a great book to highlight the differences in people and how we should embrace them. Great read-a-loud for that transition to middle school.