The Julian Chapter
by R.J. Palacio
Series: Wonder #1.5
Published: May 13th 2014
Genres: Childrens, Contemporary, Novella
Format: Hardcover (84 pages)
A brand new, exclusive chapter from the bestselling, award-winning, and critically acclaimed novel Wonder.
Over 1 million people have read Wonder and have fallen in love with Auggie Pullman, an ordinary boy with an extraordinary face. Now readers will have a chance to hear from the book's most controversial character—Julian.
From the very first day Auggie and Julian met in the pages of the #1 New York Times bestseller Wonder, it was clear they were never going to be friends, with Julian treating Auggie like he had the plague. And while Wonder told Auggie's story through six different viewpoints, Julian's perspective was never shared. Readers could only guess what he was thinking.
Until now. The Julian Chapter will finally reveal the bully's side of the story. Why is Julian so unkind to Auggie? And does he have a chance for redemption?
While Wonder never came across as preachy, I felt like The Julian Chapter did. It talks about Julian’s motives for bullying August which was fear. I could understand fear of seeing something unexpected and even unpleasant to look at. That kind of fear goes away with time, though, as you get used to it. So maybe that’s why R. J. Palacio added the nightmares Julian had from the way August looked. Sill, I felt like it was a bit much to go that far.
Most of this short story is Julian’s grandmother telling him a long story about her childhood during World War II. This is what made it feel preachy. She also points out to Julian point blank that he’s just scared of August but I had already figured that out by that point. So…yeah. Julian changes his ways so this story acts as a kind of Epilogue to Wonder. Happily ever after, the end, blah. I think kids could learn from this story about not judging too quickly and being kind even when it’s hard. But for me, it didn’t have the same magic that Wonder did. Wonder was inspiring and lovely but never preachy. Sill, I think this is probably worth reading especially if you are curious about what happens to Julian. It also has few things Julian did that we didn’t find out about in Wonder. I like when short stories offer interesting insights like that.
Did you like this short story? Did it feel preachy to you?
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