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Library News

Beginning in April and coinciding with National Library Week, the Whitehall Library will launch a community read campaign around the inspirational New York Times Best-selling novel “Wonder” by R.J. Palacio.

“Wonder” tells the story of a boy named August Pullman who is born with severe craniofacial disfigurement. As a baby and a child, Auggie undergoes 27 different surgeries and is now finally able to begin public school for the first time, in fifth grade. Chapters are told from the perspective of different characters, illustrating how Auggie is treated because of the way he looks. Readers learn that Auggie just wants to be a normal kid and to be accepted for the person he is. It’s a beautiful story of compassion, friendship, tolerance and intentional kindness.

“I have wanted to do a community-wide reading initiative for some time and “Wonder” seemed the perfect choice,” said Library Director Paula Kelly. “I honestly think it’s the kind of book that if everyone read, the world would be a better place.”

The library received a monetary gift from the Jack Buncher Foundation at the end of 2017, enabling the purchase of multiple copies of “Wonder” as well as “Year of Wonders,” the picture book version for very young readers. Kelly says, “We are really excited to gift copies of this amazing book to our schools and other community partners and stakeholders. And of course, we’ll have plenty of copies in the library to borrow. We want everyone in Whitehall to read “Wonder.””

“Whitehall Reads Wonder” also involves a slate of very special library programs. These programs will be offered for all ages and will focus upon opportunities to “choose kind,” a tagline from the book, through purposeful acts of service and thanks. Programs include Josh and Gab’s anti-bullying program, a Kids on the Block puppet show, and a spaghetti dinner and dance finale.

Check the library website for additional details at www.whitehallpubliclibrary.org.

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