book worm: wonder
"You can't blend in, when you were born to stand out"
Have you ever had the urge to hug a book? When I started reading "Wonder" by R.J Palacio, I wanted to hug it. I would take the book out of my backpack and I already knew I would enjoy whatever I read. August Pullman (Auggie) was born with a face deformity that until the moment, prevented him from going to school. He is going to start 5th grade and he is an ordinary kid who loves Star Wars. However, he is not one to blend in because of his extraordinary face.
My heart broke several times while reading this book. It takes on the cruelty that people have against something that is against the norm. Auggie would catch people's attention due to his face and was judged by it. At the beginning, he was bullied because of it. The wonderful thing about this book is that it's a book about redemption. It shows the struggle on both sides, a boy who can't help the way he was born and those who have a close connection to him. I think it's very easy to be outraged against people who discriminate either because you are different or you have a deformity but it's hard to imagine how we would react in the same situation.
“If every person in this room made it a rule that wherever you are, whenever you can, you wil try to act a little kinder than is necessary - the world really would be a better place. And if you do this, if you act just a little kinder than is necessary, someone else, somewhere, someday, may recognize in you, in every single one of you, the face of God.”
I found myself questioning each character's reaction. I could understand why Jack (Auggie's to be best friend) struggled with it, because at one point he has to choose between his friendship with Auggie and popularity. I could see why the bully would say bad things about Auggie. People are afraid of the things they don't understand. However, I know, that in the same way, we should always be kinder than necessary. It doesn't matter to whom, we must understand that everyone is fighting their own battle. That's the beauty of this book. The author writes different chapters, showing the perspective of each of the character's in Auggie's life.
“no, no, it's not all random, if it really was all random, the universe would abandon us completely. and the universe doesn't. it takes care of its most fragile creations in ways we can't see. like with parents who adore you blindly. and a big sister who feels guilty for being human over you. and a little gravelly-voiced kid whose friends have left him over you. and even a pink-haired girl who carries your picture in her wallet. maybe it is a lottery, but the universe makes it all even out in the end. the universe takes care of all its birds.”
The beautiful thing about Auggie is that, in the end, he decides to forgive and he recieves his own reward for being courageous.
So, be a little kinder than necessary.
“Courage. Kindness. Friendship. Character. These are the qualities that define us as human beings, and propel us, on occasion, to greatness.”