ARC Book Review: The Wonder by Emma Donoghue
ashley | Have you ever wondered what life would be like if we didn’t need to eat to survive? How much time and money we could save by skipping three meals a day? The Wonder by Emma Donoghue introduces us to a miraculous little girl who claims she needs no food to survive. Imagine. It has to be a hoax, right?
I’ve only read Donoghue’s Room and I quite enjoyed it. I found she has a pretty unique view on things, so I was expecting the same from this and wasn’t disappointed. This concept was a really great premise and was very convincing in both directions – a miracle from God or a giant hoax. Donoghue kept readers guessing throughout, weaving an incredible story that, like Room, ended up showing some real depths of humanity.
I loved that this took place in Ireland; I loved the character of Lib. She was dedicated and loyal and provided a skeptical non-religious standpoint in a book that otherwise was very highly religious. Without giving anything away, this book dealt plenty with religious loyalties, guilt, the oaths you take as a nurse or caregiver, and how far one will go to save a child or to keep a promise.
The book builds over a slow climb; there were some slower moments where nothing too climactic occurred. The overall cause for the miracle, when it was revealed, wasn’t really a surprise for me, as I doubt it will be for many readers, but despite having a feeling about that early on, I still really liked where the ending went, that was unexpected for me and a great turn of events.
I enjoyed the read, though I’m left with a rather lukewarm feeling about it as a whole. The prose was beautiful, it was a very unique and interesting concept which I really enjoyed and I liked how it all wrapped up, and yet I still just feel pretty ordinary after closing it. I would recommend it, however, to anyone who is looking for something a bit different, with strong characters and strong minds, but to anyone who isn’t too put off by subtle forms of self harm, as witnessing the deterioration of the child through the eyes of her nurse did end up being quite overwhelming sometimes.
today! september 20, 2016