Thursday, February 14, 2013

Cybils Middle Grade Fiction Award Winner

Well the votes are counted, the discussions concluded, and the winner of the Cybils award for middle grade fiction is ...... Wonder!  I am thrilled with the winner.  I have posted a review that I wrote of the book back in April of last year - yes it was a favorite even then.

The Cybils Award picks books of merit that kids will actually read and I have no doubt that your children will be surprised at how much they enjoy this book.

Being a judge was such a treat and a learning experience for me.  A huge thank you to Ms Yingling for selecting me as part of the Middle Grade Fiction team this year.  As a blogger, I work in such an insulated world that I found the exchange of ideas on these books refreshing and enlightening.  I really have to get out more.


Don't forget to check out all the winners on the Cybils site.  They continue to be a wonderful resource for great books for your kids from picture books to YA!  Congratulations to all the winners.

Title:          Wonder
Author:       R. J. Palacio
Target:       Grade 3-6
Series:        No
What this book is about:
Auggie Pullman is about to enter fifth grade at the first real school he has ever been to.  He has been home schooled up to this point because he was born with a facial deformity so severe it prevented him from going to a mainstream school.  We are there as Auggie faces the challenges and we learn he is just an ordinary kid with an extraordinary face.
Why I love this book:
As a parent, I usually shy away from books where the kids have to go through extraordinary challenges such as this, it just pulls too hard on my parent heartstrings.  However, I am so glad that I didn’t shy away from Wonder!  It is told in the voice of Auggie as well as some of the other young characters.  When you get the viewpoints of several different young people to the same scene, it allows kids to see that there is more than one way to look at a situation.  It is a wonderful way to teach empathy, something this book does in spades
Auggie’s voice rings true and I grew to love him throughout the book and see both his challenges and those of his family and friends.  But the book also shows us the humor and love that surrounds this family.  There are actually some laugh out loud moments.  Ultimately the story shows you how similar we all are in side!
Who this book is for:
Great book for any reader.  The voices feel authentic so kids will easily see themselves and others in the story.  The action and events also move at a good pace.  I must note that my fourth grade son loved it, so it is not a story that only speaks to adults.  My son actually snuck into his room to read it one day because he told me he couldn’t wait to finish it!  Now if that isn’t a resounding recommendation for this fabulous book, I don’t know what is!
Final thoughts:
This book is so thoughtful and well done, with a voice that a child will hear and understand!  One of my favorites so far this year. 

To purchase this book, please visit your local bookstore or click here to connect directly to Amazon: Wonder, a portion of your purchase goes back to support this blog!

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