Auggie and Me

three wonder stories 

by R.J. Palacio

     I\’m in the middle of re-reading another western similar in feel to Sam Chance when this book came up on hold for me at the library. It felt odd to jump into a different genre, with a different style aimed at a younger age group- but I went with it since I want to read and return fairly quickly. As you can guess from the cover, this book has three short stories from the viewpoint of side characters from Wonder (originally they were short stories individually available as e-books). It\’s a companion book, as the events overlap same timeframe as Wonder.

The Julian Chapter is about one of the kids who bullied Auggie. Though of course he doesn\’t see it that way at all. He found Auggie\’s appearance very disturbing- in fact it triggered old nightmares and brought up issues of anxiety he thought he had already worked past. Rather understandably, though not at all kind, he reacted to his fear and distaste by lashing out at Auggie, in an underhand way. I found it even more insightful that the story showed (if you read between the lines, which isn\’t hard to do) how Julian\’s parents- especially his mother\’s attitude- had something to do with his behavior and way of interacting with peers as well. I\’m glad that at the end the father stood up to the mom and kind of put a stop to the direction things were going. I also really liked the story the grandmother shared with Julian about her past, hiding from Nazis and how her dislike of a local boy with legs disabled from polio turned to appreciation when he helped her.
Pluto is the story of a childhood friend. They lived in the same neighborhood and Auggie had arranged playdates with him since they were very little. When they got a little older, some of the moms in the group stopped being part of it and other kids drifted away but Chris remained friends. He and Auggie obsess about outer space stuff together. This is the shortest of the stories and has two main threads- Chris trying to navigate an after-school band (organized by a teacher) where he wants to be accepted by the older kids who play well, but not offend his friend, who isn\’t that great with the instrument. There\’s also the issues he has with taking personal responsibility, getting a handle on his forgetfulness, and how when his mother gets into a car accident, he thinks it\’s his fault. Some pretty heavy stuff for only 76 pages. 
Shingaling– I didn\’t quite connect with this one as well, probably because it has so much focus on the ins and outs of girl friendships- who likes whom and who is speaking to who again (or not) and who sits where at lunch and why- for me it was hard to keep track of! Well, this is Charlotte\’s story. She\’s one of those who is kind to Auggie and avoids teasing him, but won\’t take a bigger step like actually sit with him because she\’s afraid of what other kids will say. A lot of it is about the dance class she\’s in, and a performance they prepare for at Carnegie Hall. Competition between the girls and how she gets to know one of them- that she would never have dared to approach otherwise- because they both win a place to dance in this performance. There\’s also a thread about a man she used to see playing an accordion on a street corner- and when one day he isn\’t there she wants to know why and find him again. She\’s worried that maybe he is homeless and something happened. The conclusion of that little mystery was nice. It winds up with another speech (given at fifth-grade graduation- sorry but I still don\’t get graduation ceremonies from things like kindergarten and grade school) I kind of skimmed that last page but still I liked this one too.
Borrowed from the public library.
Rating: 3/5               304 pages, 2015
more opinions:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

DISCLAIMER:

All books reviewed on this site are owned by me, or borrowed from the public library. Exceptions are a very occasional review copy sent to me by a publisher or author, as noted. Receiving a book does not influence my opinion or evaluation of it

SUBSCRIBE VIA EMAIL:

Subscribe to my blog:

We don’t spam! Read our privacy policy for more info.

VIEW MY PERSONAL COLLECTION:

TRADE BOOKS WITH ME ON:

ARCHIVES: 

2024
January 2024 (21)February 2024 (22)March 2024 (45)April 2024 (38)May 2024 (17)
2023
January 2023 (27)February 2023 (23)March 2023 (25)April 2023 (11)May 2023 (17)June 2023 (11)July 2023 (23)August 2023 (23)September 2023 (14)October 2023 (14)November 2023 (26)December 2023 (14)
2022
January 2022 (12)February 2022 (7)March 2022 (13)April 2022 (16)May 2022 (13)June 2022 (21)July 2022 (15)August 2022 (27)September 2022 (10)October 2022 (17)November 2022 (16)December 2022 (23)
2021
January 2021 (14)February 2021 (13)March 2021 (14)April 2021 (7)May 2021 (10)June 2021 (5)July 2021 (10)August 2021 (27)September 2021 (16)October 2021 (11)November 2021 (14)December 2021 (12)
2020
January 2020 (14)February 2020 (6)March 2020 (10)April 2020 (1)May 2020 (10)June 2020 (15)July 2020 (13)August 2020 (26)September 2020 (10)October 2020 (9)November 2020 (16)December 2020 (22)
2019
January 2019 (12)February 2019 (9)March 2019 (5)April 2019 (10)May 2019 (9)June 2019 (6)July 2019 (18)August 2019 (13)September 2019 (13)October 2019 (7)November 2019 (5)December 2019 (18)
2018
January 2018 (17)February 2018 (18)March 2018 (9)April 2018 (9)May 2018 (6)June 2018 (21)July 2018 (12)August 2018 (7)September 2018 (13)October 2018 (15)November 2018 (10)December 2018 (13)
2017
January 2017 (19)February 2017 (12)March 2017 (7)April 2017 (4)May 2017 (5)June 2017 (8)July 2017 (13)August 2017 (17)September 2017 (12)October 2017 (15)November 2017 (14)December 2017 (11)
2016
January 2016 (5)February 2016 (14)March 2016 (5)April 2016 (6)May 2016 (14)June 2016 (12)July 2016 (11)August 2016 (11)September 2016 (11)October 2016 (9)November 2016 (1)December 2016 (3)
2015
January 2015 (9)February 2015 (9)March 2015 (11)April 2015 (10)May 2015 (10)June 2015 (2)July 2015 (12)August 2015 (13)September 2015 (16)October 2015 (13)November 2015 (10)December 2015 (14)
2014
January 2014 (14)February 2014 (11)March 2014 (5)April 2014 (15)May 2014 (12)June 2014 (17)July 2014 (22)August 2014 (19)September 2014 (10)October 2014 (19)November 2014 (14)December 2014 (14)
2013
January 2013 (25)February 2013 (28)March 2013 (18)April 2013 (21)May 2013 (12)June 2013 (7)July 2013 (13)August 2013 (25)September 2013 (24)October 2013 (17)November 2013 (18)December 2013 (20)
2012
January 2012 (21)February 2012 (19)March 2012 (9)April 2012 (23)May 2012 (31)June 2012 (21)July 2012 (19)August 2012 (16)September 2012 (4)October 2012 (2)November 2012 (7)December 2012 (19)
2011
January 2011 (26)February 2011 (22)March 2011 (18)April 2011 (11)May 2011 (6)June 2011 (7)July 2011 (10)August 2011 (9)September 2011 (14)October 2011 (13)November 2011 (15)December 2011 (22)
2010
January 2010 (27)February 2010 (19)March 2010 (20)April 2010 (24)May 2010 (22)June 2010 (24)July 2010 (31)August 2010 (17)September 2010 (18)October 2010 (11)November 2010 (13)December 2010 (19)
2009
January 2009 (23)February 2009 (26)March 2009 (32)April 2009 (22)May 2009 (18)June 2009 (26)July 2009 (34)August 2009 (31)September 2009 (30)October 2009 (23)November 2009 (26)December 2009 (18)
2008
January 2008 (35)February 2008 (26)March 2008 (33)April 2008 (15)May 2008 (29)June 2008 (29)July 2008 (29)August 2008 (34)September 2008 (29)October 2008 (27)November 2008 (27)December 2008 (24)
2007
August 2007 (12)September 2007 (28)October 2007 (27)November 2007 (28)December 2007 (14)
2006
2005
2004
2003
2002
2001
2000
1999
1998
1997
1996
1995
1994
1993
1992
1991
1990
1989
1988
1987
1986
1985
1984
1983
1982
1981
1980
1979
1978
1977
1976
1975
1974
1973
1972
1971
1970
1969
1968
1967
1966
1965
1964
1963
1962
1961
1960
1959
1958
1957
1956
1955
1954
1953
1952
1951
1950