{ Wonder }


Wonder is a unique book and movie.

I first read the book a few years ago in audiobook form.  Hearing the book made a big impact and I highly recommend the audio.

I saw the film recently in the local (cheap) theater with my children. Here are the reasons why I liked both the book (written by R.J. Palacio) and the movie version of Wonder:

  • The writing of the book was prompted by a true-life encounter by the author.
  • In both book and movie, we get to peer into the inner thoughts and feelings of the main characters.
  • The story of Wonder displays how ugly it is to be unkind.
  • There are sequels to the first book that go delve into the supporting characters. I especially liked The Julian Chapter, the book written from the bully’s point-of-view.
  • The movie stayed true to the book.
  • The acting in the movie was excellent.  Owen Wilson played Auggie’s dad perfectly and Julia Roberts’ mom vibe was spot on.
  • The movie (and the book) didn’t force you to cry.  It just told you a story….and the tears flowed naturally.


“You can’t blend in, when you were born to stand out.” –R.J. Palacio


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{ The Resurrection of Gavin Stone ~ Movie Review }


I headed into the Family Video store, looking for…something.  This film was playing on the monitors. I perked up, surprised to hear ‘the gospels’ uttered by a character.  It might be a good film…

The story revolves around a shallow, narcissistic character (Gavin Stone). After some law-breaking-party-mischief, he is rewarded with community service. This sentence returns him to his hometown in the Midwest. He is forced to reconnect with his father after many years, since he needs a cheap place to stay.

His community service duties: janitorial detail at the local (mega) church.

Because Gavin is an actor, he wants to work out some of his 200 service hours by participating in the church Easter production. He wants the part of Jesus. Since each actor is required to be a Christian, he pretends to be one. At tryouts, his acting skills are comparatively excellent, and his audition is applauded.  He got the part.

Then, Gavin shows off his acting skills still more by continuing the pretense of being a Christian.  He Googles: What do Christians wear to church?  What bumper stickers do they apply to their vehicles? How do they pray? What words do they use?

(Guess what overused Christian word becomes his favorite?  Yep — BLESSING.)

The movie was too true.  There are lots of fakers sitting in pews. Christians are nice people, and folks like to hang around. But, not all church attenders want to surrender their own life to the Lord Jesus.  Some just want to play the game and enjoy the benefits of church life & fellowship.

People are often duped, but God isn’t fooled.

Gavin eventually admitted that he wasn’t a Christian.  And he was amazed that people hadn’t figured him out.

Reminded me of Judas, who walked, talked and ate with the other eleven disciples for three years. Right before betrayal, they didn’t guess who the traitor was in their midst. (Matthew 26:22) Which reminds me…I just bought a new book with an intriguing title: What Would Judas Do? (More about that soon!)

Besides the excellent spiritual lessons, the movie was funny and well-acted. And, it had a great ending.

I hope you see it and enjoy as much as we did 🙂

Word Prompt of the day: “shallow”