Hola! The Insider is hosting a blogpost by Shalini Baisiwala. She writes a book review in this post.
In her own words , she can be described as an interior designer by profession for whom, writing is a passion which coupled with travel-love blossomed into this blog where I love to just “do my thing”! Be it recipes, food events, travel jaunts, fiction dreaming or even meditative musings; all of it’s taken up quite passionately on my blog. I am a serious wine guzzler and love to chase butterflies in my free time. This post is part of the December bloghop #mymojo with Shalzmojo
“You can’t blend in, when you were born to stand out.”
I had been hearing superb reviews of this book titled Wonder which also got made into a movie starring my favourite Julia Roberts (I am still to watch it). This birthday a friend gifted me this book from my wish list and I couldn’t be happier about it.
Author: R.J. Palacio
R.J. Palacio had a chance encounter with a very extraordinary child outside an ice cream store, a few years ago. That’s when she decided to take the plunge and write her very own book.
August Pullman is a 10 year old boy whose entire world is about to be rocked. You see his parents have just informed him that he is being enrolled into regular school. He cannot even begin to fathom the implications of this dire act.
August suffers from a facial disorder by birth and after numerous surgeries; his face still doesn’t have any semblance to “normal”. So he considers himself a freak and often wears a helmet when stepping out of the house. He had been home schooled, up until now.
He agrees to go meet the principal and check out the school for himself before deciding on anything. The Principal has recruited three children from his class-to-be who are introduced to him and take him around the school to show it all to him. All three are a varied character and leave certain impressions on August.
His joining school is not without much incident, as was to be expected but it’s the way August deals with each situation in his own special way, that makes this book such a wonderful read.
Lasting impression on me:
How has the author gotten into the psyche of a 10 year old with facial deformity is beyond me. But the way she has outlined the fears and anguish of this little boy, made me weep while reading the book.
School kids can be unforgiving and cruel. So imagine a 10 year old having to brave that with his physical deformity. He is so acutely aware of the stares and whispers that follow his tread everywhere he goes. No one wants to be his friend as they are either scared of him or repulsed by him. Either ways it’s a no win for him.
August is so so brave and much more mature than many adults around him. He manages to turn around a bleak situation in his favour without even meaning to.
I loved the character sketched of the mother and sister – quite contrasting to each other. But both valiantly stand loyal and steadfast to August and help me circumnavigate the school year with great aplomb. Their protectiveness comes in various guises but neither hampers August from following his own path.
The entire family finds strength in being there for August and treating his situation as odd but acceptable. This acceptance is what makes for a new normal in this story and I just loved the author’s take on it.
A hearty 5 stars for this wonderfully warm book which is to be savoured slowly, over a few moons!
I hope you like my review of Wonder – you could also catch the movie based on this book which came out a while back. For other reviews done by me, you could head to my blog. One of my favourite ones that I will share here is