Rating: 4 Stars ★★★★☆
I know I’m not an ordinary ten-year-old kid.
August Pullman was born with a facial difference that, up until now, has prevented him from going to a mainstream school. Starting 5th grade at Beecher Prep, he wants nothing more than to be treated as an ordinary kid—but his new classmates can’t get past Auggie’s extraordinary face.
Auggie just wants to be normal, not to be stared at and be treated like everyone else. But he knows that it can’t be, because his face is far from normal. He is used to the stares since he was a little kid, but that does not mean they don’t hurt him.
And I feel ordinary. Inside. But I know ordinary kids don’t make other ordinary kids run away screaming in playgrounds. I know ordinary kids don’t get stared at wherever they go.
Now, he is supposed to go to a normal school. And he is scared, scared of being stared at, made fun at. And it is indeed not easy for him. There are those that treat him terribly, those that pity him. But there are also those that turn out to be true friends. And those are worth it.
It was a really sad book but at the same time, it was also very sweet. It gets the balance right between what it means for August and what it means for his family.
Perhaps the saddest part of the story, for me, was not August’s story but that of his sister. Always in the shadow of her brother, she loves him, but she is also sad and alone and scared at her new school and there is noone really looking out for her.
Mom and Dad would always say I was the most understanding little girl in the world. I don’t know about that, just that I understood there was no point in complaining. I’ve seen August after his surgeries: his little face bandaged up and swollen, his tiny body full of IVs and tubes to keep him alive. After you’ve seen someone else going through that, it feels kind of crazy to complain over not getting the toy you had asked for, or your mom missing a school play. I knew this even when I was six years old. No one ever told it to me. I just knew it.
A sweet, sad story.