Wonder by R.J. Palacio
Wonder follows the life of August, Auggie, during his first year at a prestigious school. His first year at an school other than homeschooling and to make matters even more high stakes, Auggie is not what others consider to be normal. Auggie has medical issues that have interacted with each other and makes his face highly deformed, but as a family, Auggie decides with his parents that starting at a public school for his 5th grade year would be the best time to do so. Everyone would be new to each other at the school and so there would be less of a chance for premade friend cliques to be an issue.
Auggie is excited as he can be about his first day, especially with meeting some of his future classmates before the first day. But when the first day of school comes l, Auggie tries to not let the stares get to him, but it happens so much during the day that he begins to lose hope. At lunch he meets a new friend, Summer, whom wasn’t asked to be nice to him, but chose to be kind.
Auggie and his sister, Via, find ways to get used to their new lives and friends. Auggie gets along with Jack until an incident on Halloween where Jack is now siding witb Julian.
Auggie learns the power of suggestion from a negative and positive standpoint as well as the importance of having and trusting friends. He finds out he has more friends than he realizes. People that will stick up for him no matter what and Via learns that it is okay to think about herself sometimes.
Together they traverse their new lives and find a new love and respect for each other; one that shows that a small act of kindness does more than anyone could ever possibly realize.
This book is a great read for elementary school as well as middle school kids. It is also great for all ages because it teaches that kindness doesn’t cost a thing. It has a few sensitive topics (such as bullying), but it is handled beautifully in a way young minds can understand.