R. J. Palacio

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

Wonder: Via: Major Tom Summary & Analysis

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. Miranda has always been good about calling when she gets home from summer camp every year, so it was strange when Via didn't hear from her this year. Eventually, Via noticed on Facebook that Miranda had been home for weeks and hadn't said anything. The two girls didn't see each other until the first day of school, and it was a major shock. Miranda cut her hair, dyed it pink, and wore a tube top that was completely out of character. She also acted as though Via was a casual friend. Via realized at lunch that Miranda and Ella had seen each other several times over the summer, and Via felt excluded.
As jarring as Miranda's changes were for Via, it's also worth considering that Miranda is going through much the same process as an adolescent. She's trying to find the identity that works for her, just as Via is. However, the fact that Via finds all of this painful reinforces once again that growing up isn't an easy process. Further, not all of the changes Via experiences will be on her own terms—as when Miranda's changes are wholly unexpected and also unwelcome.
Independence and Growing Up Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon