Wonder

Wonder

by

R. J. Palacio

Teachers and parents! Struggling with distance learning? Our Teacher Edition on Wonder can help.

August Pullman Character Analysis

August Pullman is the ten-year-old protagonist of the novel. He has rare craniofacial anomalies known as mandibulofacial dystosis and something similar to Treacher Collins Syndrome, which primarily affect the way that his face looks. His older sister, Via, later explains that August has no ears, cheekbones, or chin. He underwent more than twenty surgeries in his first few years of life, which is one of the major reasons that Mom and Dad decided to homeschool him. Throughout the novel, August fluctuates between wanting his parents to coddle him and wanting to be treated as an adult. August also recognizes that he feels normal on the inside, but nobody else is willing to look at him that way. When August attends school for the first time as a fifth grader, the experience is difficult, mostly because the class bully, Julian, turns the entire rest of the class against August. Julian invents a game called the Plague, in which kids become "infected" if they touch August. This makes school an isolating experience for August, though he makes friends with a boy named Jack and a girl named Summer. Although August gets in a big fight with Jack (August overhears Jack talking bad about him to Julian in an effort to fit in), the pair eventually salvage their friendship. August even gains more friends as Julian’s popularity wanes, and on a class trip, Julian’s sidekicks (Amos, Miles, and Henry) come to August’s aid when a bully from another school tries to beat him up. By the end of the novel, August has cut his hair short (thereby allowing his face to be visible) and even receives an award at graduation for courage and kindness. He revels in the standing ovation he receives and decides that everyone needs a standing ovation once in their lives.

August Pullman Quotes in Wonder

The Wonder quotes below are all either spoken by August Pullman or refer to August Pullman. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Knopf edition of Wonder published in 2012.
August: Jack Will, Julian, and Charlotte Quotes

What's cool about really little kids is that they don't say stuff to try to hurt your feelings, even though sometimes they do say stuff that hurts your feelings. But they don't actually know what they're saying. Big kids, though: they know what they're saying.

Related Characters: August Pullman (speaker), Jack Will, Julian Albans, Charlotte
Page Number: 20
Explanation and Analysis:
August: Locks Quotes

Henry still couldn't get his lock to open […] He got really annoyed when I was able to open mine on the first try. The funny thing is, if he hadn't put the backpack between us, I most definitely would have offered to help him.

Related Characters: August Pullman (speaker), Henry
Page Number: 40
Explanation and Analysis:
August: Lamb to the Slaughter Quotes

Maybe no one got the Darth Sidious thing, and maybe Julian didn't mean anything at all. But in Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith, Darth Sidious's face gets burned […] His skin gets all shriveled up and his whole face just kind of melts.

I peeked at Julian and he was looking at me. Yeah, he knew what he was saying.

Related Characters: August Pullman (speaker), Julian Albans, Ms. Petosa
Page Number: 44
Explanation and Analysis:
August: Wake Me Up When September Ends Quotes

Hey, the truth is, if a Wookiee started going to the school all of a sudden, I'd be curious, I'd probably stare a bit! And if I was walking with Jack or Summer, I'd probably whisper to them: Hey, there's the Wookiee. And if the Wookiee caught me saying that, he'd know I wasn't trying to be mean.

Related Characters: August Pullman (speaker), Jack Will, Summer
Page Number: 62
Explanation and Analysis:
August: Costumes Quotes

I wish every day could be Halloween. We could all wear masks all the time. Then we could walk around and get to know each other before we got to see what we looked like under the masks.

Related Characters: August Pullman (speaker)
Page Number: 73
Explanation and Analysis:
Via: A Tour of the Galaxy Quotes

After you've seen someone else going through that, it feels kind of crazy to complain over not getting the toy you had asked for, or your mom missing a school play. I knew this even when I was six years old.

Related Characters: Via Pullman  (speaker), August Pullman, Mom, Dad
Page Number: 82
Explanation and Analysis:
Via: Seeing August Quotes

"I love Auggie very, very much," she said softly […] "But he has many angels looking out for him already, Via. And I want you to know that you have me looking out for you."

Related Characters: Grans (speaker), August Pullman, Via Pullman 
Page Number: 87
Explanation and Analysis:
Via: An Apparition at the Door Quotes

I wonder how many nights she's stood outside his door. And I wonder if she's ever stood outside my door like that.

Related Characters: Via Pullman  (speaker), August Pullman, Mom
Page Number: 99
Explanation and Analysis:
Via: Time to Think Quotes

"Okay, that's fair," I said. "But it's not a contest about whose days suck the most, Auggie. The point is we all have to put up with the bad days. Now, unless you want to be treated like a baby the rest of your life, or like a kid with special needs, you just have to suck it up and go."

Related Characters: Via Pullman  (speaker), August Pullman, Jack Will
Page Number: 115
Explanation and Analysis:
Summer: The Plague Quotes

How I found out about this is that Maya Markowitz told me that the reason she won't play Four Square with us at recess is that she doesn't want to catch the Plague. I was like, "What's the Plague?" And she told me. I told Maya I thought it was really dumb and she agreed, but she still wouldn't touch a ball that August just touched, not if she could help it.

Related Characters: Summer (speaker), August Pullman, Julian Albans, Maya
Related Symbols: The Plague
Page Number: 120
Explanation and Analysis:
Jack: Carvel Quotes

"Jack, sometimes you don't have to mean to hurt someone to hurt someone. You understand?"

Related Characters: Veronica (speaker), August Pullman, Jack Will, Jamie
Page Number: 137
Explanation and Analysis:
Jack: Ex-Friends Quotes

And the truth is, though nobody's that obvious about it: nobody wants to hang out with him. Everyone's way too hung up on being in the popular group, and he's just as far from the popular group as you can get. But now I can hang out with anyone I want. If I wanted to be in the popular group, I could totally be in the popular group.

Related Characters: Jack Will (speaker), August Pullman, Julian Albans
Related Symbols: The Plague
Page Number: 145
Explanation and Analysis:
Jack: The War Quotes

Before she went out, she looked left and right outside the door to make sure no one saw her leaving. I guess even though she was neutral, she didn't want to be seen with me.

Related Characters: Jack Will (speaker), August Pullman, Julian Albans, Charlotte
Related Symbols: The Plague
Page Number: 173
Explanation and Analysis:
Justin: Olivia's Brother Quotes

it's not even like they know they're being mean, she adds. they were just scared. i mean, let's face it, his face is a little scary, right?

Related Characters: Via Pullman  (speaker), August Pullman, Justin
Page Number: 189
Explanation and Analysis:
Justin: Bird Quotes

it's just been so nice being in a new school where nobody knows about him, you know? nobody's whispering about it behind my back […] but if he comes to the play, then everyone will talk about it, everyone will know […].

Related Characters: Via Pullman  (speaker), August Pullman, Justin
Related Symbols: “Our Town”
Page Number: 203
Explanation and Analysis:
August: My Cave Quotes

"Auggie!" Mom yelled. "That's not true!"

"Stop lying to me, Mom!" I shrieked. "Stop treating me like a baby! I'm not retarded! I know what's going on!"

Related Characters: August Pullman (speaker), Mom (speaker), Via Pullman 
Related Symbols: “Our Town”
Page Number: 218
Explanation and Analysis:

I don't even know how I got so mad. I wasn't really mad at the beginning of dinner. I wasn't even sad. But then all of a sudden it all kind of just exploded out of me. I knew Via didn't want me to go to her stupid play. And I knew why.

Related Characters: August Pullman (speaker), Via Pullman  , Mom
Related Symbols: “Our Town”
Page Number: 218
Explanation and Analysis:
August: Daisy's Toys Quotes

So I went to my bed and put on my pajamas without anyone telling me to and put the night-light on and turned the light off and crawled into the little mountain of stuffed animals I had left on my bed earlier.

Related Characters: August Pullman (speaker), Via Pullman  , Mom, Dad, Daisy
Page Number: 225
Explanation and Analysis:
August: Understudy Quotes

"Daddy, can you please not call me Auggie Doggie anymore?" I whispered in Dad's ear.

Dad smiled and nodded and gave me a thumbs-up.

Related Characters: August Pullman (speaker), Dad
Related Symbols: “Our Town”
Page Number: 229
Explanation and Analysis:

I knew right then and there that I was going to like the play. It wasn't like other school plays I've been to, like The Wizard of Oz or Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs. No, this was grown-up seeming, and I felt smart sitting there watching it.

Related Characters: August Pullman (speaker), Via Pullman 
Related Symbols: “Our Town”
Page Number: 230
Explanation and Analysis:
August: Known For Quotes

That's not exactly true: I do know what I'm really known for. But there's nothing I can do about that. A Star Wars duffel bag I could do something about.

Related Characters: August Pullman (speaker)
Page Number: 252
Explanation and Analysis:
August: A Simple Thing Quotes

"Kinder than is necessary," he repeated. "What a marvelous line, isn't it? Kinder than is necessary. Because it's not enough to be kind. One should be kinder than needed. Why I love that line, that concept, is that it reminds me that we carry with us, as human beings, not just the capacity to be kind, but the very choice of kindness."

Related Characters: Mr. Tushman (speaker), August Pullman, Jack Will
Page Number: 300
Explanation and Analysis:
Get the entire Wonder LitChart as a printable PDF.
Wonder PDF

August Pullman Character Timeline in Wonder

The timeline below shows where the character August Pullman appears in Wonder. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
August: Ordinary
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
August explains that he's aware that he's not an ordinary kid. He does normal things like... (full context)
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
However, August says that he's used to the stares, as are Mom and Dad. His big sister,... (full context)
August: Why I Didn't Go To School
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
August explains that he'll be going to school to start fifth grade next week. He's terrified... (full context)
August: How I Came to Life
Identity Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
August tells the reader the story of his birth, prefacing it by saying that he and... (full context)
Identity Theme Icon
...farting. Mom's regular doctor wasn't on duty, so she was assigned a cranky doctor. When August was finally born, the nice nurse whisked him away before Mom could see him. Dad... (full context)
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
...nice. She stayed with Mom for hours and was there when the doctors explained that August was very sick. The farting nurse even told Mom that all of God's children will... (full context)
August: Christopher's House
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
Early in the spring, August's family visits Christopher and his family. When August and Christopher come inside for snacks, August... (full context)
August: Driving
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
In the car on the way home, August and Via fall asleep. August wakes up after dark to hear Mom and Dad whispering... (full context)
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
Mom explains that she and Dad met the principal last year, and August is even more hurt that his parents have been talking about sending him to school... (full context)
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
Mom asks if August will at least meet Mr. Tushman, the principal, and August is aghast at Mr. Tushman's... (full context)
August: Paging Mr. Tushman
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
August explains that he wasn't nervous about meeting Mr. Tushman because he didn't know that he'd... (full context)
August: Nice Mrs. Garcia
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
Mom and August follow Mr. Tushman through the school. August hides behind Mom and feels "babyish" doing so,... (full context)
August: Jack Will, Julian, and Charlotte
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
Mr. Tushman leads Mom and August into his office. August looks at the interesting items on Mr. Tushman's desk and the... (full context)
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
August stops short when he hears kids' voices outside the office. He tells the reader that... (full context)
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
...Mr. Tushman shows two boys and a girl into his office. They don't look at August or Mom. Mr. Tushman introduces them as Jack Will, Julian, and Charlotte. Jack Will and... (full context)
August: The Grand Tour
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
Nobody speaks as Jack Will, Charlotte, and Julian lead August up to the third floor of the school. Julian shows him room 301, which is... (full context)
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
August is so nervous, he mostly stares at his shoes. He finally asks what homeroom is,... (full context)
August: The Performance Space
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
Charlotte chatters about playing Oliver in the production of Oliver last year as she leads August, Jack, and Julian into the auditorium. As Charlotte talks, August notices Julian slyly staring at... (full context)
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
Charlotte insists that August was just homeschooled, and Julian doubts that someone who isn't a real teacher like August's... (full context)
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
As August passes Jack, Jack looks August right in the eye. August looks back at him and... (full context)
August: The Deal
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
When August, Jack, Julian, and Charlotte get back to the office, Mrs. G asks if August liked... (full context)
August: Home
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
After a half block, Mom asks how the tour of the school was. August refuses to talk until they get home. When they arrive, he races to his room... (full context)
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
When Mom says that Julian seemed especially nice, August corrects her and says that Julian was the least nice. He tells Mom how Julian... (full context)
August: First-Day Jitters
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
On the first day of school, August is very nervous. Mom and Dad take pictures of him and Via, and they all... (full context)
August: Locks
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
August is very glad he took a tour of the school, as he's able to find... (full context)
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
...a seat with another boy. She tells him to take the empty seat next to August, which Henry does grudgingly. He puts his backpack up on the desk to shield his... (full context)
August: Lamb to the Slaughter
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
August tells the reader that the night before, he Googled what "like a lamb to the... (full context)
August: Choose Kind
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
When the bell rings, August races to his English class and sits down in the back. He doesn't look up... (full context)
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
...for September: to "choose kind" when given the choice between being kind or right. As August writes the precept in his notebook, he realizes that he's going to like school. (full context)
August: Lunch
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
Lunch is a struggle for August, though he thinks he should've known better since Via warned him. Some kids tell August... (full context)
August: The Summer Table
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
August looks up when he hears a girl ask if she can sit across from him.... (full context)
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
August and Summer decide that their table is the "summer table," and they go through all... (full context)
August: One to Ten
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
August explains that after his jaw surgery, when his jaw was wired shut, Mom started asking... (full context)
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
Mom tries to ask other questions about August's day, but August gives cursory answers. He chooses to not tell Mom about Julian's Darth... (full context)
August: Padawan
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
August cuts off his Padawan braid that night. Dad is thrilled, but Via seems angry and... (full context)
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
Dad asks August if he's mad at Mom, and August insists that she's the most to blame for... (full context)
August: Wake Me Up When September Ends
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
August struggles through most of September. He's never had to get up so early or do... (full context)
August: Jack Will
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
August spends most of his classes with Jack. He's not sure if the teachers put them... (full context)
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
Later, as they read in their textbooks, Jack asks August if he wants to beat up kids like that eighth grader. He suggests that August... (full context)
August: Mr. Browne's October Precept
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
...Egyptian tombstone and asks the students to write about what they think the precept means. August writes that it means that people should be remembered by the things they do, as... (full context)
August: Apples
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
August's birthday is the tenth of October, and he asks Mom if he can have a... (full context)
August: Halloween
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
The day after August's birthday party, Summer asks what he's going to be for Halloween. She explains that they... (full context)
August: School Pictures
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
At the end of the month, Mom allows August to not have his school photo taken. However, August isn't able to get out of... (full context)
August: The Cheese Touch
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
Before long, August picks up on the fact that nobody wants to touch him. He explains that in... (full context)
August: Costumes
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
August explains that Halloween is his favorite holiday. For one day, he gets to look like... (full context)
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
Last year, August was the Bleeding Scream. This year, he's going to be Boba Fett from Star Wars.... (full context)
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
...uncharacteristically not patient with her, so Mom and Dad finally decide that Dad will take August to school and Mom will drive Via. Dad gives August five minutes to put his... (full context)
August: The Bleeding Scream
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
August feels awesome walking down the hallway at school. Another kid dressed as the Bleeding Scream... (full context)
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
August decides to sit where he can hear them rather than at his regular desk. Julian... (full context)
August: Names
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
August tells the reader some of the names that kids call him: rat boy, E.T., lizard... (full context)
Via: A Tour of the Galaxy
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
Via tells the reader that August is the sun, while she, Mom, and Dad are just planets orbiting around him. Daisy... (full context)
Via: Before August
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
Via doesn't remember life before August, but she's seen pictures of herself and her parents before he arrived. She can tell... (full context)
Via: Seeing August
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
Via explains that she always knew August didn't look normal, but she never used to see him the way that others see... (full context)
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
...possibly the best time of Via's life, and returning home was hard. Via remembers seeing August running downstairs to meet her and seeing for just a second what other people see... (full context)
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
...together. Grans had told Via a secret: she loved Via more than anyone else, even August. She explained that August had enough angels looking out for him, but nobody was looking... (full context)
Via: August Through the Peephole
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
August's eyes are almost halfway down his cheeks and slant at an extreme angle. They bulge... (full context)
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
Eventually, August will need hearing aids, which he hates the idea of. Via wonders if August knows... (full context)
Via: High School
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
...because she could be Olivia Pullman there, not Via. In elementary school, everyone knew about August because he came to all the school functions with Mom and Dad. In middle school,... (full context)
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
In high school, it seems as though only Miranda and Ella know about August, and they don't talk about it with other people. They've all been friends since first... (full context)
Via: Major Tom
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Via explains that Miranda was always the sweetest to August. She bought him his space helmet, and they'd sing "Space Oddity" by David Bowie together.... (full context)
Via: After School
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
...She gives Mom a little bit of information about her day and then asks about August's, which leads to a strange and dramatic fight when Mom acts as though she doesn't... (full context)
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
Via storms to August's room, moves Daisy over, and tries to ask him about school while he plays video... (full context)
Via: The Padawan Bites the Dust
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
That night, August cuts off his Padawan braid. It makes Via surprisingly angry. She remembers how proud August... (full context)
Via: An Apparition at the Door
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
Once, Via woke up in the middle of the night and saw Mom standing outside August's room, listening to him sleep. Via thought she looked like a ghost or an angel.... (full context)
Via: Breakfast
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
...something going on with Miranda, and Via explains that Miranda is acting like a jerk. August pipes up that Miranda isn't a jerk, but Mom quickly tries to defuse the brewing... (full context)
Via: Genetics 101
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
...moved to North River Heights in upper Manhattan when Via was a year old. Until August was born, nobody knew that they were carriers for his genetic mutation. Though sometimes his... (full context)
Via: The Punnett Square
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
...gene on to them, but only a one in four chance that they'll look like August. August is guaranteed to pass the gene onto his children, but if he marries someone... (full context)
Via: Out with the Old
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
...him. When Via runs into Miranda and Ella, they say hi, and Miranda asks after August, but Via never tells August hi for Miranda. (full context)
Via: October 31
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
...sad time of year for Via and Mom. Mom copes by going all out on August's Halloween costume. This year, she spends all her time on the Boba Fett costume. Via... (full context)
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
...Dad is in a bad mood and ends up making Via cry, so he takes August to school, and Via and Mom stay home. Via thinks that Mom must miss Grans... (full context)
Via: Trick or Treat
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
August insists he's not well enough to go trick-or-treating, which Via finds shocking and sad. She... (full context)
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
Via asks if there's something more going on, and August, close to tears, finally tells Via what he overheard Jack saying. Via soothingly says that... (full context)
Via: Time to Think
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Via feels bad for Mom the next day, as Mom has no idea that August's stomach is perfectly fine. By Sunday evening, August still doesn't want to go back to... (full context)
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Via tells August that it's actually great that the kids don't know that August heard them saying mean... (full context)
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
Angry, Via threatens to tell Mom and Dad about Jack if August stops going to school, saying that if Mr. Tushman finds out, he'll make Jack apologize... (full context)
Summer: Weird Kids
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
...asked her why she hangs out with "the freak" so much. She tells them that August is nice, and deflects when people call her a saint or suggest that Mr. Tushman... (full context)
Summer: The Plague
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
Summer admits that August's face does take some time to get used to. However, she doesn't feel bad for... (full context)
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
While playing foursquare one day, Summer learns about the Plague. Supposedly, anyone who touches August has thirty seconds to wash their hands before they catch the Plague. Nobody has touched... (full context)
Summer: The Halloween Party
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
...Summer has no idea what she's talking about until she realizes Savanna is referring to August. Savanna leads her to the basement, where Summer learns that Ximena is dating Miles, and... (full context)
Summer: November
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
...Halloween candy, and also mentions that she has a crush on someone other than Julian. August is absent, but finally returns to school on Monday. Summer can tell that something is... (full context)
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Finally, August looks Summer in the eye and tells her that she doesn't have to be friends... (full context)
Summer: Warning: This Kid Is Rated R
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
Summer warns her mom about August's face, but Summer's mom still looks surprised when August walks through the front door. August... (full context)
Identity Theme Icon
August thinks for a moment and confirms that a person would be born as an entirely... (full context)
Summer: The Egyptian Tomb
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
For the next month, August and Summer hang out often after school. On the day of the Egyptian Museum exhibit,... (full context)
Jack: The Call
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
Jack begins his narration in August, when his mom gets a call from Mr. Tushman. Mr. Tushman asks Jack's mom if... (full context)
Jack: Carvel
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
Jack explains that he saw August for the first time when he was six. He was with his babysitter, Veronica, and... (full context)
Jack: Why I Changed My Mind
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
...phony and Charlotte is a goody two shoes. Jack tries to tell his mom what August looks like just as Jamie walks into the kitchen. Jamie immediately joins in and says... (full context)
Jack: Four Things
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Jack says that you do eventually get used to August's face, and that August is very funny and nice. He's also smart and lets Jack... (full context)
Jack: Ex-Friends
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
...no idea what Summer's "Bleeding Scream" comment means. He explains that one day, he and August were friends and the next, August wouldn't talk to him. Jack doesn't believe he did... (full context)
Jack: Snow
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
...which means that Beecher Prep is closed for an extra day. Jack is bummed that August is ignoring him, so he's thrilled to have an extra day off. Jack's dad also... (full context)
Jack: Fortune Favors the Bold
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
...about the assignment and thinks that the bravest thing he did was become friends with August, but he doesn't write about that because he's afraid Mr. Browne will make them read... (full context)
Jack: In Science
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
...a great student. School isn't his favorite, and he especially hates science. When Jack and August were friends, Jack was doing okay because August let Jack copy his notes. Now, Jack... (full context)
Jack: Partners
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
...out for the rest of science class and barely hears his teacher pair him with August for the science fair project. When Jack finally comes back to earth after the bell... (full context)
Jack: Season's Greetings
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
When Jack's mom and Jack get home, they find holiday cards from Julian's family and August's family in their mail. Jack thinks that August's card, which has a picture of Daisy... (full context)
Jack: Letters, Emails, Facebook, Texts
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
...the pressure of being forced to be friends with "the new child with special needs" (August). She explains that she told Julian he didn't have to be friends with August and... (full context)
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
...she also explains that Jack didn't feel it was a burden to be friends with August. She says that Jack genuinely enjoys August's company. (full context)
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Jack sends August a friend request on Facebook and also sends him an email apologizing for what he... (full context)
Jack: The War
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
...swears Jack to secrecy and explains that at Julian's holiday party, everyone but Jack and August were there. Julian told everyone that Jack has emotional problems, that Jack's parents begged the... (full context)
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
...cutting him off and making him feel lonely. He thinks that it'll make Jack drop August if all the boys refuse to talk to Jack. She explains that the girls except... (full context)
Jack: Switching Tables
Identity Theme Icon
...original table, but Jack gets up and accepts Summer's invitation to sit with her and August. (full context)
Jack: Why I Didn't Sit with August the First Day of School
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
Jack admits that he's a hypocrite and didn't sit with August on the first day of school because he just wanted to be normal for a... (full context)
Jack: Sides
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
...acting like he has the Plague. When Jack looks ashamed for bringing up the Plague, August says he already knew about it but didn't know what kids were calling it. (full context)
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Summer declares that they're too young to be dating anyway. August agrees but jokes that it's a shame with all the "babes" throwing themselves at him.... (full context)
Jack: August's House
Identity Theme Icon
In the middle of January, August insists that he and Jack need to work on their science fair project. They go... (full context)
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
Via knocks on August's door and lets herself in. She's clearly not expecting to see Jack and when August... (full context)
Jack: The Boyfriend
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
...He wears round glasses, carries a long case with a sharp end, and seems nervous. August mischievously asks if Justin is Via's boyfriend, and Jack asks if there's a gun in... (full context)
Justin: Olivia's Brother
Identity Theme Icon
When Justin meets August for the first time, he's surprised. He thinks that he shouldn't be, given how much... (full context)
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
After Justin and Via get to Via's room, she asks what he thought of August. He assures Via that he's not shocked, and Via explains that when she was a... (full context)
Justin: Valentine's Day
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
...Via's parents put Justin at ease immediately. He notices that their waiter is shocked by August, but he pretends not to notice. Justin knows that Via noticed. When Via's parents ask... (full context)
Justin: The Bus Stop
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
As Justin and Via are kissing goodbye, Mom, August, and Jack come down the stairs. Mom pretends not to notice, but August and Jack... (full context)
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
...few minutes, Justin realizes that the war is going on because Jack is friends with August. Justin tells Jack that middle school is awful, but it gets better. He waves Jack... (full context)
Justin: Rehearsal
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
...while Justin and Miranda wait backstage, she asks him about Via and if he's met August. Justin is surprised that Miranda knows about August, but pretends he already knew when she... (full context)
Justin: Bird
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
...she hasn't told her parents about Our Town. She'd rather they don't come so that August doesn't come. Via says she's an awful person, but she loves being at a school... (full context)
Justin: The Universe
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
...swirl through his head, as well as Miranda's assertion that the universe wasn't kind to August. Justin thinks that August didn't do anything to deserve his rare combination of syndromes. As... (full context)
August: North Pole
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
August and Jack's potato lamp receives an A and is a hit at the science fair.... (full context)
August: The Auggie Doll
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
February is the worst month for "the war." Julian leaves notes in August's locker that call him a freak and an orc, but August refuses to report the... (full context)
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
...March, everyone stops playing the Plague and lots of people will even accept pencils from August. One day, August sees Maya writing a note on Uglydoll stationery and he jokes that... (full context)
August: Lobot
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
August has known since he was little that he'd need hearing aids someday, but he desperately... (full context)
August: Hearing Brightly
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
August can barely describe how he hears when the audiologist turns on his hearing aids. He... (full context)
August: My Cave
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
...again, so Mom makes her an appointment to see the vet the next day. Mom, August, and Via sit down for dinner, and August asks if they're going to see Justin... (full context)
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
Mom makes an excuse that their argument has nothing to do with August and is shocked when August accuses her of lying. Suddenly angry, August jumps up and... (full context)
August: Goodbye
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Via tells August to come quick and yells that it's not about him when he refuses to apologize.... (full context)
August: Daisy's Toys
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
Justin arrives a half hour later. He sits with August and Via in the living room quietly and they all look at Daisy's toys, which... (full context)
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
Two hours later, Mom and Dad come home without Daisy. August knows that Daisy is gone. They all sit in the living room, and Dad explains... (full context)
August: Heaven
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
Very early in the morning, August wakes up and crawls into bed next to Mom. He asks about her hand and... (full context)
August: Understudy
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
A few days later, Via brings home three tickets to Our Town. On opening night, August is nervous at how big Via's school is. He wishes he could wear a baseball... (full context)
August: The Ending
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
August tells the reader that the play was amazing, and the ending made everyone cry. Via... (full context)
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
Mr. Davenport comes over, and Via introduces him to Mom, Dad, and August. Justin pulls Mr. Davenport away before he can look too embarrassed at his reaction to... (full context)
Miranda: Camp Lies
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
...felt terrible—she knew that Via would be upset, but she also felt somewhat entitled since August feels like her little brother. (full context)
Miranda: What I Miss Most
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
...safer with them than she did with her own parents. Miranda says she also loved August and once called the Pullmans just to say hi to him. He told her all... (full context)
Miranda: Extraordinary, but No One There to See
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
...and loves her part. However, when Miranda peeks at the audience from backstage and sees August, Mom, and Dad, she suddenly mumbles to Mr. Davenport that she feels sick and can't... (full context)
Miranda: The Performance
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
...out for their curtain calls, but she feels better when she sees Mom, Dad, and August backstage. She notices August looking lost, rushes up behind him, and greets him. (full context)
Miranda: After the Show
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
Miranda can't believe how big August is now as they chat about the play. Mom finds them minutes later, greets Miranda,... (full context)
August: The Fifth-Grade Nature Retreat
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
August explains that in the spring, the Beecher Prep fifth graders go away to a nature... (full context)
August: Known For
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
August asks Mom to buy him a new plain duffel bag to replace his Star Wars... (full context)
August: Packing
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
The day before the trip, Mom helps August pack. She folds all his clothes and puts them in the duffel bag and suggests... (full context)
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
Mom reminds August to wear sunscreen and bug spray and tells him not to get his hearing aids... (full context)
August: Daybreak
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
August wakes up very early the next day and is immediately wide awake. He rolls over... (full context)
August: Day One
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Everyone on the bus is very excited. August is especially thrilled when he hears that Julian decided the trip was too dorky, so... (full context)
August: The Fairgrounds
Identity Theme Icon
The second day is fantastic: August gets to ride horses, climb trees, and the class is scheduled to see an outdoor... (full context)
August: Be Kind to Nature
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
...announcements are finished, the voice says that the movie will be The Sound of Music. August is surprised when kids from other schools boo and throw things at the screen. (full context)
August: The Woods Are Alive
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
During the "boring part," Jack needs to go to the bathroom and takes August with him. They see a massive line for the bathrooms, so Jack decides to relieve... (full context)
August: Alien
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
August and Jack walk right into a group of strange kids. August realizes the group has... (full context)
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
Suddenly, August hears Amos, Miles, and Henry come up behind them and ask what's going on. Amos... (full context)
August: Voices in the Dark
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
...like forever, a voice yells that they lost the bullies. Amos, Jack, Henry, Miles, and August find each other in the dark, and August realizes that Henry had been hanging onto... (full context)
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
Amos, Miles, and Henry congratulate August on his bravery. August starts to become aware that his elbow is hurt and bleeding,... (full context)
August: The Emperor's Guard
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
August, Jack, Amos, Miles, and Henry look for the hearing aids for ten minutes, but they... (full context)
August: Sleep
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
August reads in his cabin until two in the morning. He explains that nobody noticed that... (full context)
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
...and Miles about the boys that tried to attack them, but when he spoke to August, August lied about not remembering Eddie's face. Lying in bed, August thinks that Eddie's face... (full context)
August: Aftermath
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
When the class gets back to Beecher Prep, August sees Mom waiting for him with the other parents. Mr. Tushman already told her about... (full context)
August: Bear
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
August's family decides to name the puppy Bear because Mom thinks he looks like a bear... (full context)
August: The Shift
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
The next day at school, August notices that things are very different. The story of what happened at the camping trip... (full context)
August: Ducks
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
On the day before the last day of school, Mr. Tushman calls August to his office. He found out the names of the seventh graders from the camping... (full context)
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
Mr. Tushman asks August to sit down and remarks that it's amazing that the school year is almost over.... (full context)
Identity Theme Icon
August notices that the pumpkin portrait that used to be behind Mr. Tushman's desk has since... (full context)
August: The Drop-Off
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
Dad drives August to the graduation ceremony at the auditorium. They arrive early, so they sit in the... (full context)
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
August is livid. Dad clumsily explains that he couldn't handle August covering his face anymore. He... (full context)
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
August and Dad see Jack approaching, so August starts to get out of the car. Dad... (full context)
August: Take Your Seats, Everyone
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
At the auditorium, Mrs. G directs August and Jack to their staging area. Another teacher gets them in seats and soon, Summer... (full context)
August: A Simple Thing
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
An hour later, August and his classmates listen to Mr. Tushman's address. Mr. Tushman jokes about how long-winded he... (full context)
August: Awards
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
August zones out for most of the speeches but perks up when a teacher calls Honor... (full context)
August: Floating
Identity Theme Icon
August can barely understand what's happening. His classmates push him up and towards Mr. Tushman, high... (full context)
August: Pictures
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
Beecher Prep holds a reception after the ceremony. August allows his parents and other relatives to hug him. They start taking pictures, and Dad... (full context)
August: The Walk Home
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
Everyone walks to August's house for cake after the reception. August hears the Star Wars hero music in his... (full context)
Appendix
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
...talks about not hurting people's feelings, and Julian's says that it's good to start over. August's precept is his newfound belief that everyone should get a standing ovation once in their... (full context)
August: Home (2)
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
Mom and August walk home in near silence. When they get home, Mom wraps her arms around August,... (full context)
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
August asks for chocolate milk and while Mom whisks chocolate powder into milk, he tells her... (full context)
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
Parenting and Guidance Theme Icon
August is satisfied with this and decides to go take a nap. Mom thanks him for... (full context)