Wonder (Donoghue) - Book Reviews

Book Reviews
[F]ascinating…. The book is set in the mid-19th century, but its themes—faith and logic, credulity and understanding, the confused ways people act in the name of duty and belief and love—are modern ones. While the wonder of the title refers to many things, at its core it's an examination of the mysteries of reason, responsibility and the heart…Like Ms. Donoghue's best-selling Room, the novel ultimately concerns itself with courage, love and the lengths someone will go to protect a child. Holding Anna tight, Lib knows that "she'd give her the skin off her body if she had to, the bones out of her legs." The feeling is heartbreaking and transcendent and almost religious in itself.
Sarah Lyall - New York Times Book Review

These [claustraphobic] rooms of Donoghue’s may be tiny and sealed off, yet they teem with life-and-death drama and great moral questions. Hesitant readers may think that they’d rather lose themselves in stories with a larger sweep, a little more air; but Donoghue does so many intricate things within these small spaces of hers that, for a time, they become the most compelling places to linger. What was it that the poet William Blake said about seeing "a World in a Grain of Sand . . . ?" Something of that kind of mystic expansion happens in Donoghue’s rooms.
Maureen Corrigan - Washington Post

Donoghue poses powerful questions about faith and belief all the while crafting a compelling story and an evocative portrait of 19th-century Irish provincial society
Tom Beer - Newsday

Readers of historical fiction will gravitate to this tale.
Mary Ann Gwinn - Seattle Times

A riveting allegory about the trickle-down effect of trauma.
Megan O'Grady - Vogue

Donoghue's superb thriller will keep readers hanging on to every word, pondering how far one will go to prove her faith.
Liz Loerke - Real Simple

(Starred review.) Donoghue demonstrates her versatility by dabbling in a wide range of literary styles in this latest novel.... [E]ngrossing...with descriptions of period customs and 19th-century Catholic devotional objects and prayers. Even with its tidy ending, the novel asks daring questions about just how far some might go to prove their faith.
Publishers Weekly

(Starred review.)[S]tartlingly rewarding.... Heart-hammering suspense builds as Lib monitors Anna's quickening pulse, making this book's bracing conclusion one of the most satisfying in recent fiction. —John G. Matthews, Washington State Univ. Libs., Pullman
Library Journal

(Starred review.) Outstanding.... Exploring the nature of faith and trust with heartrending intensity, Donoghue's superb novel will leave few unaffected. —Sarah Johnson

(Starred review.) The story’s resolution seems like pure wish fulfillment, but vivid, tender scenes between Lib and Anna, coupled with the pleasing romance that springs up...will incline most readers to grant Donoghue her tentative happy ending.... [T]his gripping tale offers a welcome reminder that her historical fiction is equally fine.
Kirkus Reviews

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