Monday, October 8, 2012

Wonder: A Book Review

I don't normally do book reviews on this blog and I've been contemplating a lot on taking my blog in another direction. No, that doesn't mean that I am going to stop doing makeup related posts; I, for one, still have a huge interest in the beauty industry. However, I have other interests too and as a result, I think it's about time to start making some changes. First of those changes, more book reviews. So folks, here is my first one.  

I recently finished reading this book and had done so within two days. It's a middle grade book, and if you haven't realized from a previous book related post that I have a little love for middle grade fiction then let it be known now. This book punched me in the heart; so hard, that I literally balled through-out the entire thing. 

Wonder by R. J Palacio is a book about a boy named August or Auggie as his close friends and family call him. Auggie is ten, and unlike most children, he was born with a very rare genetic disease considered to be somewhat of a medical enigma. So, basically his face is a little messed up, to put it lightly, and as a result his parents kept him home-schooled until now. So Auggie enters middle school for the first having to deal with the awkward glances and wondering eyes, but its okay, he's used to that sort of thing. But soon this start to become a little too much handle and Auggie begins to regret his decision of coming to school.

This book, surprisingly enough, is not told entirely from the perspective of August. Palacio decided to incorporate five other perspectives into the mix allowing the reader to really get a glance through some of the other characters eyes. Aside from Auggie, I adored his older sister Via. She is a tough girl who came to the realization that her needs would always be second to her younger brother and even still she looks out for Auggie, getting incredibly protective of him when others maliciously or unintentionally hurt him. She is incredibly strong and for this, I admire her a lot. 

The entire tone of novel works very well for the subject matter. The writing suits the ten year old narrator as well as some of the more older characters and the flow of the novel was quick and impressionable. There were so many moments in this book where I just wanted to give Auggie a hug, pet his head and say there, there; yes, the world is cruel but I still love you!! Honestly, I just couldn't help it. Auggie is such an endearing character and I adored how much he made fun of himself and made others laugh unexpectedly too. This book, guys, it just oozes out good feelings.

Now, a lot of people say this book is too "perfect". Auggies parent's are too understanding and too loving and some characters are too cruel or too nice and the ending is too tidy and too sweet. Well, I say so what?  I think that there is such an important message for young children to learn in this book and even though nothing really terrible happened to Auggie and in the end everyone loved him and accepted him, it is still an important message; do not judge people based off of their physical appearance and be kind to those who don't often receive kindness. (Or some variation of that)

So yes, this book is fantastic and who cares if its all gushy and sweet and happy! I don't see anything wrong with that and I would be more than happy to have other children learn this message too. Seriously though people, go read this book. If it doesn't kick you in the heart and make you cry then I don't know but that is exactly what it do to me and I am fine with that. 

Overall Rating: Five freakin stars plus a happy face