Parents of Tweens (9-14) discussion

Wonder (Wonder, #1)
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Discussions > Wonder, by R.J. Palacio

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Sheila I see that Diane added the book Wonder Wonder by R.J. Palacio to the group bookshelf here. Diane, have you read this book? Would you recommend it for tweens? Has anyone else read this book?

I have a copy of it and was thinking of reading it next with my daughter after we finish Treasure Island, but wondered if anyone had any opinions (good or bad) or this particular book. Thanks in advance. :o)


message 2: by Christine (new)

Christine Donnelly (cmd723) | 7 comments My daughter who just turned 11 read it last year. She loved it! She liked that the author saw the boy from different peoples perspectives.


Sheila Thank you, Christine. I am happy to hear your daughter loved it!


Leslie (lesslie) If you do read it Sheila I'd be glad to scrounge up a copy of my own and read along.


Sheila Leslie, that would be great. I own a copy of this book, so can read it anytime. If you want to do a Buddy type read, just let me know when you are able to get a copy and we can read it then. I don't mind if it is soon, or even next year after the holidays. :o)

Is anyone else interested in reading and discussing this one?


Leslie (lesslie) Well our library has both a digital and a hardback copy of Wonder so I'm in! Let's see if anyone else wants to join us.


Sheila Great Leslie. Sounds like a plan.


message 8: by Erik (new)

Erik This Kid Reviews Books (ThisKidReviewsBooks) | 31 comments Wonder was awesome! I read it in a day. I loved how it was told from different people's point of view.


Leslie (lesslie) Erik wrote: "Wonder was awesome! I read it in a day. I loved how it was told from different people's point of view."

Well, ladies, we have a kid's thumbs up! Erik, my Thomas is 9 will he be the right age for this?


Sheila Thank you Erik! I'm glad to hear you thought this book was awesome!

Is anyone else interested in reading/discussing this book?


message 11: by Erik (new)

Erik This Kid Reviews Books (ThisKidReviewsBooks) | 31 comments Erik wrote: "Wonder was awesome! I read it in a day. I loved how it was told from different people's point of view."

Hi Ms. Leslie,
There isn't any cursing in Wonder. There's some rude language like "shut up" but nothing more than that. The whole message in the story about bullying or being treated differently just because of the way you look, I think is good for kids 9+.


message 12: by Erik (new)

Erik This Kid Reviews Books (ThisKidReviewsBooks) | 31 comments Sheila wrote: "Thank you Erik! I'm glad to hear you thought this book was awesome!

Is anyone else interested in reading/discussing this book?"


Thank you Ms. Shelia! I thought Wonder was WONDERFUL ;)


Leslie (lesslie) So Sheila you say when and I'll grab a couple of copies from our library.


Sheila Since I have my copy I am happy to leave it up to you Leslie. Would you prefer to start soon, or wait until after the holidays?

Let me know what you prefer, and when you get your library copies. :o)


Leslie (lesslie) Let's see how if we can sneak it in before the holidays. So here's me going to the library website to be sort of sneaky and check out one copy for me with my card and one copy for him with his card. I feel sneaky but there are worse kinds of sneaky. Perpaps I really am big fat nerd.


Leslie (lesslie) Ug. ONe of our libraries has it but declares it to be "unavailable" for even a request. They have no hardcopy. The other has 2 Kindle copies but 3 people waiting. So I put in my request and went straight back to put a hold on their one hard copy to find that while I was letting the dog out some fiend snatched up! So, grumble grumble I will let you know the minute one comes available.


Sheila No worries. I'm don't mind waiting. It must be good if there is a waiting list at the library. :o)


Leslie (lesslie) Yes I hadn't thought of that!


Leslie (lesslie) Okay Miss Sheila! I finally have a copy of Wonder. I'll begin today.


Sheila Sounds good. I'll get started too. :o)


Sheila I'm only a little way into this book (pg 24), but I thought I'd post comments as I go. I found it interesting that in the very beginning August doesn't tell us what he looks like "I won't describe what I look like. Whatever you're thinkingm it's probably worse."

It does mention later that he was born with a cleft palate, among other things, but I like the fact that his deformity is not the focus of the story, it is just a fact of the story. I also like his positive attitude. I hope it continues through the book.


Leslie (lesslie) Sheila I can't tell ya how glad I am you suggested this book. I would probably never have read it. I like it so much. So much of it parallels my Thomas's life. So much! I can't wait for him to finish the books he's reading now so he can begin this too. Thanks again, it's a really great read! (By the way, I love how the writer makes you feel like your in each character's head so skillfully, seamlessly. The main character is wonderful. I love him to death!)


Sheila Okay, Leslie, I have finished, and while in some ways I loved this book (I loved Auggie) in other ways I am conflicted. I think the main thing that bothers me is that (view spoiler)

I did enjoy the story being told from all the different character's viewpoints. I enjoyed getting into Auggie's mind, I enjoyed getting into the mind of his sister, and the kids at school. But something about that one part just didn't sit right with me.

Do you think I am overreacting?


Leslie (lesslie) Hmmmm. I hadn't thought about it like that. I think it might depend on the sort of mood I was in when reading it. I am sometimes so sensitive to things just like that that no one else understands. I know I was appalled at my kid's karate class letting parents select the trophies their kids would "win" before tournaments. Ridiculous! Some kids with no talent or dedication at all would go home with enormous trophies. I don't think you are over reacting either. I'll borrow Thomas's copy later and reread that part again. I can say now though that it wasn't necessary to award him anyway. I myself might have been embarassed by it. How about you?


message 25: by Sheila (last edited Dec 04, 2012 01:41PM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Sheila Yes, I think I would have been embarassed by it. Here is how Auggie responded in the book (I liked this first part of his response):

It's like people you see sometimes, and you can't imagine what it would be like to be that person, whether it's somebody in a wheelchair or somebody who can't talk. Only, I know that I'm that person to other people, maybe to every single person in that whole auditorium. To me though, I'm just me. An ordinary kid."

I really liked that he thought of himself as just an "ordinary kid". But then his response continued with:

"But hey, if they want to give me a medal for being me, that's okay. I'll take it. I didn't destroy a Death Star of anything like that, but I did just get through the fifth grade. And that's not easy, even if you're not me."

So in the book, he wasn't embarassed (normal reaction of a fifth grade boy?) to be given an award just for being who he was. But I still wonder, how will he feel when he is older? (I really could be overthinking this, but I tend to be REALLY sensitive to things like this.)

Plus, his family seemed to be THRILLED that he received this award. As a mom, I would have been unhappy. Though maybe his mom was unhappy, but didn't let him know it.


Leslie (lesslie) It can be pretty complicated. But I guess Mr Tush (Tushman?) was trying to show his regard and admiration for a kid who could easily have just quit and gone home but who showed bravery and loyalty and adult like determination to forbear. NOt to mention an amazing character. All those things deserve an award as much as academics or sports.


Leslie (lesslie) By the way, my Thomas, who is an almost 10 year old and who has been homeschooled because of his own special needs (nothing so bad as this) is now reading this book. I was halfscared to let him. He is soooo mcuh like the little boy and likes him already. I am curious to see if it will effect his feelings about someday going to public school.


Sheila I'd love to know what Thomas ends up thinking of the book. Please do share when he has finished. :o)


Leslie (lesslie) Well so far he hasn't been moved to tears as much as I was or as disturbed by some of the other kids' behaviour as much as I was. He is interested in the genetics bit. He does stop and talk about it more than usual.


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