“Kinder than is necessary. Because it’s not enough to be kind. One should be kinder than needed.”
Wonder is a wonderful story about a boy, August, who was born with severe facial deformities. Numerous surgeries coupled with his parents reservations kept him from being a typical school environment until this year. This year August will attend 5th grade at Beecher Prep.
The school principal enlists a few of August’s classmates a few weeks before term starts to show him around. One of those boys, Jack, becomes his friend while another boy, Julian, becomes one of his main tormentors.
And he is tormented, because been a tweenager is hard enough without having severe facial deformities. It goes without saying that this one is a tear-jerker but it has a lovely message. I actually have a former classmate who has been teaching this to her fourth grade class.
“Here’s what I think: the only reason I’m not ordinary is that no one else sees me that way.”
The story is told mainly from August’s perspective although a few of his friends as well as his older sister, Via, have their own chapters. The other narrators help round out the story although Palacio did a wonderful job giving August a strong voice that could have carried the novel itself.
Like everything wonderful lately Wonder is being turned into a movie staring everyone’s go-to precocious twelve year old Jacob Tremblay.