auggie & me: three wonder stories
Written by R.J. Palacio
Published on August 27th by Alfred A. Knopf
Young Adult Fiction
WONDER tells the story of Auggie Pullman: an ordinary boy with an extraordinary face, whose first year at school changed the lives and the perspectives of everyone around him.
AUGGIE & ME is a new side to the WONDER story: three new chapters from three different characters – bully Julian, oldest friend Christopher and classmate Charlotte – giving an insight into how Auggie has touched their own lives. Thought-provoking, surprising, infuriating, heartbreaking and heartwarming, AUGGIE & ME is a must-read for the thousands of readers who loved WONDER.
Most readers have read or at least heard of Wonder by R.J. Palacio. Auggie & Me is a companion book filled with three stories from different characters from Auggie’s world. Ms. Palacio chose Julian, Christopher and Charlotte to be the subject of these stories; they are from their individual perspectives.
Julian’s story is, by far, the most meaningful and powerful. After reading Wonder, you want to understand why Julian acted the way he did. Why was he such a bully to Auggie? Julian’s story shed some light on his behavior and character. It is really hard to forgive Julian for his bullying of Auggie; but, I think I can after reading his story. I know Auggie did. As you know from Wonder, Julian’s parents are not the most understanding and compassionate of people. However, Julian’s grandmother had an amazing impact on him and he was able to see how horrible he acted. It’s her story that makes Julian’s story so powerful and why he was able to be redeemed.
Christopher’s story, entitled Pluto, focuses on how hard it can be to be Auggie’s friend. His story includes many flashbacks to when they were little boys and the present where he still feels second to Auggie. As he says at the end, it’s hard to be Auggie’s friend. However, it’s not because Auggie is a mean person; it’s quite the opposite. He has to go through so much to have a normal life and he takes it so well. With that said, if something happens to Auggie, everything revolves around him. Christopher is a really sweet kid; but even the best kid can have a bad day.
Last is Charlotte; she was one of Auggie’s welcome buddies in Wonder. Her story is all about girl drama and not much about Auggie. It’s about the difference between nice and kind. Charlotte discovered one can be nice in every way but completely miss the point on being kind. Her friends, Summer and Ximena, help her to that discovery. Auggie did not play a direct role in Charlotte’s world but he did have impact and he became the example of kindness.
The common thread to all three stories is Auggie’s impact on people’s lives. His acceptance and perseverance showed people exactly how to live your life with strength and kindness. If you loved Wonder, I would give this book a try; just for Julian story alone. You will be able to have some understanding on why Julian acted the way he did and how he realized how he affected other.