Saturday, May 5, 2012

REVIEW: Wonder by R.J. Palacio

I won't describe what I look like. Whatever you're thinking, it's probably worse. 

August (Auggie) Pullman was born with a facial deformity that prevented him from going to a mainstream school—until now. He's about to start 5th grade at Beecher Prep, and if you've ever been the new kid then you know how hard that can be. The thing is Auggie's just an ordinary kid, with an extraordinary face. But can he convince his new classmates that he's just like them, despite appearances? 

Wonder is unlike anything I've ever read before. It's unique, moving and eye-opening. I couldn't put it down, and there wasn't a page I read that I didn't enjoy! Wonder was told from the perspective of 10-year-old Auggie, members of his family, his friends and his peers. I loved the way it was told, it made me enjoy the book even more because it was really interesting to see things from lots of different points of view. Something I just find absolutely incredible is how something as simple as how someone looks can affect and alter so many lives. R.J. Palacio portrays this is a wonderful, appealing and fascinating way.

Auggie was a lovely, funny, although sometimes self-absorbed character. He was only in fifth grade though, I suppose, so I'll forgive him for that! He provided most of the books humour, and had me laughing at times. I felt sorry for him, because all he wanted was to be considered ordinary but he knew that would never happen. But Auggie wasn't ordinary. He was extraordinary. He was such a wonderful character. He felt so real and genuine, I had to remind myself that he was fictional!

I loved Auggie's school friends, Summer and Jack. Summer was awesome, so sweet, but I had a sort of love-hate relationship with Jack. But in the end I decided I liked him! I felt sorry for Auggie's sister Viv too - she was so supportive and protective of Auggie, but was sometimes - well, not neglected by her parents, but sort of brushed aside. Auggie always came before her, and I thought she didn't deserve it, she was such a lovely character. All of the characters were so believable and felt so real, Palacio did a great job developing them. Except there was just one thing - these kids were like, 10 and they all had boyfriends and girlfriends. They seemed to be growing up very fast! That was just something that surprised me, but it didn't really bother me that much. 

The story wasn't thrilling, but I still didn't ever want to stop reading! Wonder told the story of Auggie's first year at a proper school, and was fascinating and so enjoyable to read. I read it for two hours straight two nights in a row, and if I had the time I would have read it in one sitting! The chapters are short and easy to read, and I was hooked from the very first page! My only complaint was that I wish the book had been longer - I could have read it forever!

As I mentioned before, I loved the alternating vantage points. I liked getting an insight into all these peoples lives, seeing their perspective and how each one viewed Auggie. I don't think I would have enjoyed Wonder as much if it wasn't told in this way. I thought it made such a difference to the book!

I never, ever, ever cry at books, but I nearly did reading Wonder! It will make you laugh one minute and the next you will be shedding a tear! It really is amazing. I could honestly go on forever about it but I'm just going to leave it here! Heartwarming and heartbreaking, Wonder will surprise, delight, and move you, whatever age you are!

Source: For Review - a massive thanks to the publisher for sending me this in exchange for an honest review.
Format: Hardback
Pages: 317
Age group: 9+
Official Publication Date: 1st March 2012
Publisher: Bodley Head (an imprint of Random House)
Challenges: ABC Reading Challenge


  1. Thanks for the fab review Cliona! I really want to read this now, it sounds really interesting :) hope you're having a great weekend!

  2. Awesome review, Cliona! I've been seeing this alot and want to read this even more now! It's sounds like a unique read. Have a fantastic weekend. :D xxx

  3. Fantastic review! This is starting to collect dust on my shelf! I might open it one day, thanks for sharing! :]

  4. Awesome review!! :) This book is in my TBR pile, and now I want to read it even more! Thanks for the brilliant review!
    Beth xx

  5. This is such a brilliant book! Glad you loved it.

  6. Such a great review, I adored Wonder and couldnt put it down either, it was so beautiful and amazing that i keep recommending it to EVERYONE! lol

  7. Fantastic review! I really want to read this one. It sounds very touching. I must get around to it soon. :)


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