Last year when my daughter was in the fifth grade, one of her assigned reads was Wonder, by RJ Palacio. She read the book, very much enjoyed it and gave it to me to read, saying “you will love this, Maman”. It took a bit more prompting as I have plenty of my own books and never enough time to read. But once I did pick it up, I couldn’t stop reading.
The book is about a boy, Auggie, who was born with a severe facial deformity who, after being home-schooled his whole life, is about to enter the 5th grade at the local school. There are a wide range of reactions to the new kid with the deformed face. The book takes us through Auggie’s feelings, fears, courage, humor, and those of his sister, parents and ultimately friends.
I enjoyed the book and loved how each chapter is written from someone else’s point of view. I am glad that my kids’ school assigns this book as it teaches children about acceptance, sensitivity and the effects of bullying. The book is recommended for ages 9 to 12 but I would recommend it to all parents out there. If you’ve ever taught your kids to not “judge a book by its cover”, pick up this book and read it with your kids. It is down-to-earth, heartfelt, witty, and funny.