15 Books to Read After WONDER


Title image for 15 Books to Read After Wonder

    Wonder is one of the most popular children’s novels of our time—and for good reason! R.J. Palaccio weaves a tale of acceptance and empathy that will encourage all readers. But due to this popularity SO MANY students already know the story. So what can you read instead? Or what can you suggest to students who want further reading?

Read on for 15 books you should read next! All of these are similar in theme, audience, and reading level to Wonder.

BUT FIRST! If you're looking for resources to use with Wonder, look no further!

Book cover of Out of My Mind, Fish in a Tree and Insignificant Events in the Life of a Cactus

1. Out of My Mind by: Sharon M. Draper

This novel is in the same category as Wonder as one that celebrates medical differences. Melody is unable to walk or communicate but she is one of the smartest students in school. With supportive parents and neighbors, Melody shows everyone that she is more than her disability. 

2.  Fish in a Tree by: Linda Mullaly Hunt

Ally has always had trouble in school, but it’s not until she gets a new teacher that she discovers why. Mr. Daniels sees Ally’s dyslexia immediately. But more importantly, he also sees her creativity and intelligence. Fish in a Tree will be a relatable, community building novel for your class. 

3. Insignificant Events in the Life of a Cactus by: Dusti Bowling

Aven was born without arms but that hasn't slowed her down. Aven is clever, spunky, and capable of anything. She conquers a cross-country move, the challenge of new friendships, and uncovers a mystery she can't resist.  

>>View my read aloud companion for this title on Teachers Pay Teachers!<<

Book covers of The War that Saved My Life, Freak the Mighty, and Rules

4. The War that Saved My Life by: Kimberly Brubaker Bradley

This Newbery Honor book is set during the turbulent time of WWII. Young Ada is hidden away by her cruel mother because of a "twisted foot." Ada overcomes so much: a physical disability, parental abuse, moving and meeting new people, and war. 

>>View my read aloud companion for this title on Teachers Pay Teachers!<<

5. Freak the Mighty by: Rodman Philbrick

Making friends is hard, especially if students feel like they'll never fit in. This novel is about looking for friends in unlikely places. It is a tear-jerker and will cover some tough themes. But it is powerful!

>>View my read aloud companion for this title on Teachers Pay Teachers!<<

6. Rules by: Cynthia Lord

Catherine is a "normal" 12 year old girl with an autistic brother. She works hard to teach her brother the rules of normal life. But along the way she begins to question what "normal" truly is. 

Book cover of Helen Keller's Teacher, El Deafo, and Rain Reign

7. Helen Keller's Teacher By: Margaret Davidson

This classic is the true story of Helen Keller and her teacher, Anne Sullivan. After working through her own disabilities, Anne persevered and was able to communicate with Helen. This is one of the most inspirational teacher-student stories you will ever read. 

8. El Deafo by: Cece Bell

Cece has made a startling discovery: her hearing aid allows her to hear her teacher anywhere in the school. This new power leads to the birth of "El Deafo" a superhero for all. But will this power make her even more of an outsider?

9. Rain Reign by: Ann M. Martin

Rose is a very particular girl who loves her rules. She also loves homonyms and names her beloved dog Rain (Reign/Rein). When a storm hits town and Rain goes missing, Rose must leave her rules behind to find him. 

Book cover for Forget Me Not, The Miscalculations of a Lightning Girl, and Song for a Whale

10. Forget Me Not by: Ellie Terry

Moving to a new school is a tough transition for anyone. But it's especially tough for Calliope June--a smart, friendly, girl with Tourette syndrome. Calliope works through moving, friendships, new family dynamics, and more. 

11. The Miscalculations of Lightning Girl by: Stacy McAnulty

Lucy was struck by lightning and given a surprising gift: super human math skills. This sets her apart in many ways and keeps her from a normal school life. But before she begins college, her grandmother challenges her to spend ONE year in middle school. Lucy most embrace her differences and find a new sense of comfort. 

12. Song for a Whale by: Lynne Kelly

At 12 years old, Iris is the only deaf person at her school. She feels alone in many ways but makes a surprising connection in this novel--with a whale that lives 3,000 miles away. Her journey moves her from self-pity to  empathy. 

Ellie is a spunky, honest girl with cerebral palsy. She has big dreams of being a chef but also has big obstacles in her way. Conquering a new town with an ailing grandfather and overworked mother will not be easy. But Ellie is always up for a challenge. 

14. Counting by 7s by: Holly Goldberg Sloan

Willow has a lot of "quirks" (like finding comfort in counting by 7s). It's one of the things that makes it difficult to relate to those outside her family. But after an unimaginable loss, Willow's strength in grief and rebuilding is inspirational. 

15. Braced by: Alyson Gerber

Things are going well for Rachel. She is a successful soccer player, has good friends, and is confident in herself. That is until the doctor tells her she must wear a back brace for her scoliosis. Rachel's confidence plummets and she learns to manage a new normal. 

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