Wonder, by R.J Palacio
After selling a boatload of these and hearing the best things about it, I had to read "Wonder" for myself. Told from six different perspectives, this is the story of August Pullman's fifth-grade year. What makes this year remarkable is that Auggie has several facial deformities and this is his first year going to school after 10 years of surgeries and homeschooling. It's a sweet story, full of trials and triumphs and redemption, with the lovely message of being kind to people no matter how different they are. Reading it as an adult, it's very predictable, but even then it has great merit. The writing is great, the different perspectives are done very well, and it's impossible to read it without crying at least once. It's wonderful that a book like this has been so popular among kids. They can be awful to each other, it's true, but it seems that their capacity for being mean is only overshadowed by their capacity for opening their hearts. I hope the children who have read and continue to read "Wonder" are taking its message into their own hearts. We need more books like this.