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Brooklyn By the Book: RJ Palacio presents “White Bird” with Ed Park

November 10, 2019 @ 4:00 pm - 5:30 pm

R.J. Palacio, author of beloved bestseller “Wonder,” joins us at Congregation Beth Elohim to read from and discuss her new graphic novel, White Bird, with Ed Park. Doors open at 3:00 PM.

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.

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.

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.

Ed Park is author of the novel Personal Days, which was a finalist for the PEN Hemingway Award, and a founding editor of The Believer. His Graphic Content column appears in The New York Times Book Review. Last year, he wrote the introduction to the Welsh cartoonist Chris Reynolds’s The New World (New York Review Comics).



November 10, 2019
4:00 pm - 5:30 pm
Event Category:


Congregation Beth Elohim


CBE Chapel
274 Garfield Place
Brooklyn, NY 11215 United States
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(718) 768-3814