Wonder by R.J. Palacio is a beautiful and heartwarming book about the power of friendship and a community in the face of hate.
August, by all accounts, is a normal ten-year-old kid- except for one thing. He has a rare genetic disorder and despite twenty-seven different surgeries, he will never look like other kids his age. This makes life extremely difficult for “Auggie” and his family. His older sister is overprotective of him, and gets angry when people stare at him funny in public- and his parents, who only want what is best for him, do not want to send him to a public middle school where he may be bullied. However, what Auggie finds at school is something much different- he discovers friendship, and the power of love.
This novel was an incredible journey from beginning to end- and it is no ‘wonder’ that it was adapted into an award-winning movie. Wonder is essentially a book about discomfort- the discomfort we feel when we see a person that looks different from us in public, the discomfort they feel at the inordinate stares and whispers. However, it shows that this discomfort and pity can be overcome- to make way for community, love, and acceptance.