MLA Gold Award Site

Reading guide for Because of Winn-Dixie by Kate DiCamillo

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reading Guide |  Reviews |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

Because of Winn-Dixie

by Kate DiCamillo

Because of Winn-Dixie
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • First Published:
    Mar 2000, 184 pages
    Paperback:
    Sep 2001, 182 pages

  • Rate this book


Buy This Book

About this Book

Reading Guide Questions Print Excerpt

Please be aware that this discussion guide may contain spoilers!

The Short of the Story:

At the start of Kate DiCamillo's Newbery Honor novel, ten-year-old India Opal Buloni has just moved to Naomi, Florida. Her mom has left the family, and her preacher father has been hiding in his old "turtle shell." All India Opal wants is a friend. That's when she finds Winn-Dixie, a stray dog she rescues at the local grocery store. Having Winn-Dixie for a dog is great. India Opal starts to meet people in town, her father starts poking out of his shell, and India Opal even begins to understand why her mother may have left. All of this happens because of Winn-Dixie.

Questions to Discuss:

  1. What brings India Opal and her father to Naomi?
     
  2. Describe Winn-Dixie. What is it about him that makes him appealing to India Opal?
     
  3. How does India Opal's father react to Winn-Dixie? How does she convince him to let the dog stay?
     
  4. What are the ten things that India Opal's father tells her about her mother? Connect these ten things to the rest of the story. (For example, number three is "She liked to plant things." India Opal later plants a tree with Gloria Dump.)
     
  5. Gloria Dump says that the most important thing in life is "different for everyone. . . . You find out on your own. But in the meantime, you got to remember, you can't always judge people by the things they done. You got to judge them by what they are doing now." What do you think this means? What does this mean to you?
     
  6. Why is Gloria Dump so important to India Opal?
     
  7. Who were some of your favorite characters in town? Describe them.
     
  8. How does a Littmus Lozenge work? Would you want to try one? Why or why not?
     
  9. What happens at the party to bring India Opal and her father together? What do you predict for their relationship in the future?
     
  10. What does the title mean to you?
     

These discussion questions were contributed by Katie O'Dell, reading promotions coordinator at the Multnomah Public Library in Portland, Oregon, www.multcolib.org/kids. Reproduced with the permission of the publisher, Candlewick Press.

Unless otherwise stated, this discussion guide is reprinted with the permission of Candlewick Press. Any page references refer to a USA edition of the book, usually the trade paperback version, and may vary in other editions.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!
Member Benefits

Join Now!

Check the advantages!
Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year

    •  
    • FREE
    • MEMBER
    • Range of media reviews for each book
    • Excerpts of all featured books
    • Author bios, interviews and pronunciations
    • Browse by genre
    • Book club discussions
    • Book club advice and reading guides
    • BookBrowse reviews and "beyond the book" back-stories
    •  
    • Reviews of notable books ahead of publication
    •  
    • Free books to read and review (US Only)
    •  
    • Browse for the best books by time period, setting & theme
    •  
    • Read-alike suggestions for thousands of books and authors
    •  
    • 'My Reading List" to keep track of your books
    •  

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: If I Was Your Girl
    If I Was Your Girl
    by Meredith Russo
    Who defines us? Do we ourselves, or does the society in which we live? Meredith Russo's ...
  • Book Jacket: If I Was Your Girl
    If I Was Your Girl
    by Meredith Russo
    Who defines us? Do we ourselves, or does the society in which we live? Meredith Russo's ...
  • Book Jacket
    The Lost Child
    by Caryl Phillips
    The Lost Child is a modern novel constructed within a historical frame, invoking one of the most ...

First Impressions

  • Book Jacket

    If I Forget You
    by Thomas Christopher Greene

    A haunting tale of lost love from the critically acclaimed author of The Headmaster's Wife.

    Read Member Reviews

Members review books pre-publication. Read their opinions in First Impressions

Book Discussions
Book Jacket
Sweet Caress
by William Boyd

William Boyd's Sweet Caress captures an entire lifetime unforgettably within its pages. It captivates.

About the book
Join the discussion!
Win this book!
Win The Charmers

The Charmers by Elizabeth Adler

"This tale of romantic suspense makes the perfect beach read."
—Library Journal

Enter

Word Play

Solve this clue:

C To T Q

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.