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White Bird
Cover of White Bird
White Bird
A Wonder Story
Inspired by her blockbuster phenomenon Wonder, R. J. Palacio makes her graphic novel debut with an unforgettable story of the power of kindness and unrelenting courage in a time of war.
"I was captivated by White Bird. It tells the hardest truths with honesty and calm (so that young readers can hear them). R.J.Palacio brings to life the nature of heroism and the real risks we face today." —Meg Medina, Newbery award-winning author of Mercy Suarez Changes Gears

In R. J. Palacio's bestselling collection of stories Auggie & Me, which expands on characters in Wonder, readers were introduced to Julian's grandmother, Grandmère. Here, Palacio makes her graphic novel debut with Grandmère's heartrending story: how she, a young Jewish girl, was hidden by a family in a Nazi-occupied French village during World War II; how the boy she and her classmates once shunned became her savior and best friend.
Sara's harrowing experience movingly demonstrates the power of kindness to change hearts, build bridges, and even save lives. As Grandmère tells Julian, "It always takes courage to be kind, but in those days, such kindness could cost you everything." With poignant symbolism and gorgeous artwork that brings Sara's story out of the past and cements it firmly in this moment in history, White Bird is sure to captivate anyone who was moved by the book Wonder or the blockbuster movie adaptation and its message.
Praise for Wonder:
#1 New York Times bestseller
USA Today bestseller
Time Magazine's 100 Best Young Adult Books of All Time
"In a wonder of a debut, Palacio has written a crackling page-turner filled with characters you can't help but root for." —Entertainment Weekly
"Rich and memorable." —The New York Times
"A beautiful, funny and sometimes sob-making story of quiet transformation." —The Wall Street Journal
Inspired by her blockbuster phenomenon Wonder, R. J. Palacio makes her graphic novel debut with an unforgettable story of the power of kindness and unrelenting courage in a time of war.
"I was captivated by White Bird. It tells the hardest truths with honesty and calm (so that young readers can hear them). R.J.Palacio brings to life the nature of heroism and the real risks we face today." —Meg Medina, Newbery award-winning author of Mercy Suarez Changes Gears

In R. J. Palacio's bestselling collection of stories Auggie & Me, which expands on characters in Wonder, readers were introduced to Julian's grandmother, Grandmère. Here, Palacio makes her graphic novel debut with Grandmère's heartrending story: how she, a young Jewish girl, was hidden by a family in a Nazi-occupied French village during World War II; how the boy she and her classmates once shunned became her savior and best friend.
Sara's harrowing experience movingly demonstrates the power of kindness to change hearts, build bridges, and even save lives. As Grandmère tells Julian, "It always takes courage to be kind, but in those days, such kindness could cost you everything." With poignant symbolism and gorgeous artwork that brings Sara's story out of the past and cements it firmly in this moment in history, White Bird is sure to captivate anyone who was moved by the book Wonder or the blockbuster movie adaptation and its message.
Praise for Wonder:
#1 New York Times bestseller
USA Today bestseller
Time Magazine's 100 Best Young Adult Books of All Time
"In a wonder of a debut, Palacio has written a crackling page-turner filled with characters you can't help but root for." —Entertainment Weekly
"Rich and memorable." —The New York Times
"A beautiful, funny and sometimes sob-making story of quiet transformation." —The Wall Street Journal
Available formats-
  • Kindle Book
  • OverDrive Read
Languages:-
Copies-
  • Available:
    0
  • Library copies:
    1
Levels-
  • ATOS:
  • Lexile:
    440
  • Interest Level:
  • Text Difficulty:
    1 - 2

Recommended for you

About the Author-
  • R. J. Palacio lives in New York City with her husband, two sons, and two dogs. For more than twenty years, she was an art director and graphic designer, designing book jackets for other people while waiting for the perfect time in her life to start writing her own novel. But one day several years ago, a chance encounter with an extraordinary child in front of an ice cream store made R.J. realize that the perfect time to write that novel had finally come. Wonder is her first novel. She did not design the cover, but she sure does love it. Her other books include 365 Days of Wonder: Mr. Browne's Book of Precepts, Auggie & Me: Three Wonder Stories, and We're All Wonders. Learn more about her at rjpalacio.com or on Twitter at @RJPalacio.
Reviews-
  • Publisher's Weekly

    July 1, 2019
    Branded as “A Wonder Story,” Palacio’s well-paced graphic novel debut expands upon a story introduced in Auggie & Me—Grandmère’s tale of her childhood in German-occupied France. Asked by Julian, Wonder’s bully, to recount the story of Julien, a boy impacted by polio who helped her hide from Nazi soldiers as a child, Grandmère reluctantly agrees. Cruelly teased by schoolmates, Julien becomes Sara’s protector after Nazis invade their progressive school. The two make a sympathetic duo as Sara’s once-charmed life gives way to an existence of survival. Palacio elaborates on her previous books’ themes, including empathy, bullying, and othering, and a twist toward the end challenges assumptions about who “belongs” in a society. Final panels, which show contemporary Americans protesting family separation at the U.S./Mexico border, tether the story to current events. The volume’s visual style is at its most distinctive in its evocative settings and poetic moments, such as woods that sparkle with bluebells and the titular white bird soaring through time and space. Palacio, a confident storyteller, has crafted a work whose classroom-friendly packaging belies a gripping human story. Further resources include a glossary and suggested reading list. Ages 8–12.

  • Kirkus

    Starred review from July 15, 2019
    A grandmother shares her story of survival as a Jew in France during World War II. As part of a homework assignment, Julian (Auggie's chief tormentor in Wonder, 2012) video chats with Grandmère, who finally relates her wartime story. Born Sara Blum to a comfortable French Jewish family, she is indulged by her parents, who remain in Vichy France after 1940. Then, in 1943, after the German occupation, soldiers come to Sara's school to arrest her and the other Jewish students. Sara hides and is soon spirited away by "Tourteau," a student that she and the others had teased because of his crablike, crutch-assisted walk after being stricken by polio. Nonetheless, Tourteau, whose real name is Julien, and his parents shelter Sara in their barn loft for the duration of the war, often at great peril but always with care and love. Palacio begins each part of her story with quotations: from Muriel Rukeyser's poetry, Anne Frank, and George Santayana. Her digital drawings, inked by Czap, highlight facial close-ups that brilliantly depict emotions. The narrative thread, inspired by Palacio's mother-in-law, is spellbinding. In the final pages, the titular bird, seen in previous illustrations, soars skyward and connects readers to today's immigration tragedies. Extensive backmatter, including an afterword by Ruth Franklin, provides superb resources. Although the book is being marketed as middle-grade, the complexities of the Holocaust in Vichy France, the growing relationship between Sara and Julien, Julien's fate, and the mutual mistrust among neighbors will be most readily appreciated by Wonder's older graduates. A must-read graphic novel that is both heart-rending and beautifully hopeful. (author's note, glossary, suggested reading list, organizations and resources, bibliography, photographs) (Graphic historical fiction. 12-16)

    COPYRIGHT(2019) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • School Library Journal

    September 1, 2019

    Gr 4-6-This graphic novel expands on Grandmère's childhood story, which was referenced in The Julian Chapter, a companion to Palacio's Wonder. Grandmère tells Julian about her childhood in France. She describes how her comfortable, happy life changed in the summer of 1940, when the Germans occupied part of France. Though Grandmère, or Sara, and her family lived in the free zone, she tells Julian, "Nothing was really normal anymore. Not if you were Jewish, like us." As the war progresses, it becomes more real to Sara, but she doesn't understand the danger until the day that the Nazi soldiers arrive at Sara's school to take the Jewish children. Sara hides to escape capture but doesn't know what to do next until she is rescued by a classmate who leads her to safety. The boy, Julien, though she knows him by the cruel nickname Torteau (French for "crab"), uses crutches to walk because his legs were affected by polio. The two become friends, and their relationship even turns romantic as the years pass while Sara is in hiding, but Julien's character doesn't become more than a tragic hero. Moments set in the present featuring Julian and Grandmère frame the tale and draw parallels to family separation at the U.S. border, offering a powerful conclusion. An author's note discusses Palacio's connection to the story, and back matter provides further information about the war, the period, and more. VERDICT Sure to be popular among fans of Wonder and educators who want to connect past to present.-Mindy Rhiger, Hennepin County Library, MN

    Copyright 2019 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

  • School Library Journal "Sure to be popular among fans of Wonder and educators who want to connect past to present."
  • Meg Medina, Newbery award-winning author of Mercy Suarez Changes Gears
    "R.J. Palacio brings to life the nature of heroism and the real risks we face today."
  • Mark Siegel, author of the 5 Worlds graphic novel series "Rare, superb, timely, and timeless."
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    Random House Children's Books
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A Wonder Story
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