I kept seeing this book everywhere. In all the bookstores, online, in my underwear draw, under my bed when I checked for monsters… But it was just one of those books I couldn’t quite get myself to buy. Why? I don’t know. It never grabbed my attention.
I finally picked the book up in Barcelona’s airport, while I was waiting for my flight. I already had something to read but I was almost finished with it, so I wanted something else to be able to read afterwards. I guess I took it because I kept seeing it everywhere, so with a shrug, I bought it and read it.
I have to say, this book reminds me of all the books I was made to read in high school. Books that you wouldn’t actually go out and buy yourself, but after reading them, you’re glad your English teacher made you read it.
What’s this book about?
“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.”
To be honest, the first bit of the book was easy to get into, but after that there was a part where I struggled. Nothing really happened. I know not to expect anything incredible to happen because the idea or the point of the story is to see how this person lives, and how the others surrounding this person live because of him. I’m not saying that I didn’t enjoy it, because I did. But there was a little part of the book that just became a bit boring.
As I said, I did enjoy this book. But what I think really made me smile was the “Julian chapters”. I actually got a little teary reading those chapters, mostly due to his grandmother’s story (I won’t explain more).
This story really does allow you to see and feel what it’s like to live with something that we class as “not normal”, especially as a child. I think what I most enjoyed was remembering certain aspects of school, certain ways you would suddenly become scared because of bullies. Even though I clearly don’t have the problem August has, most of us have been bullied at some point in our lives, and even though the way in which we were bullied may vary, the emotions and feelings don’t. It did also make me reflect on times where I haven’t been so nice to someone else (especially in high school), and even though I think in this book they all ended up being quite nice to August (im not sure whether that would’ve happened in my school), I think this book really does teach us to try and be a bit kinder to others.
All in all, I don’t know if this book really deserves all the hype it’s getting… It was a good read, and it really makes you think about things, but it wasn’t a book that changed my soul. I am a believer that nowadays if you write about cancer or any type of physical problems, you seem to be able to make a bestseller out of it for some reason. But still, I think it’s worth reading. There were some nicely made points, and I especially enjoyed the english teacher in this novel.
Have you read this book? What do you think? Did you love it? Hate it? Or were you like me; keep seeing it everywhere, even under your bed and you’re not quite sure whether to read it or not?