Reading guide for Big Girl Small by Rachel DeWoskin

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Big Girl Small

A Novel

by Rachel DeWoskin

Big Girl Small
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  • First Published:
    May 2011, 304 pages
    Jul 2012, 304 pages

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Book Reviewed by:
Norah Piehl

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Reading Guide Questions Print Excerpt

Please be aware that this discussion guide may contain spoilers!

  1. Discuss Judy's attitude about life as an LP? Did her attitude surprise you? Have you ever personally known an LP?

  2. Judy comes to the conclusion that "suffering isn't relative." What does this mean to you, and do you agree?

  3. Is Judy a reliable narrator? In what ways might her perception of reality be slightly distorted? What do you make of her assessment of Kyle, before and after his actions are revealed?

  4. Judy faces many adolescent hardships throughout the novel, but also the thrill of many "firsts". Is Judy perhaps afraid to grow up? What do you make of Sarah's assertion that the brain becomes less "exuberant" in adulthood?

  5. When Judy hears that Ginger may have spread a nasty rumor, she muses: "Can you really define a whole person by one cruel thing she does?" What do you think?

  6. Ginger is an enigmatic character, she defies categorization. Why do you think Sarah and Judy's mother dislike her? How do you feel about her, did she ultimately surprising you?

  7. Does Judy's musical talent draw attention away from her physical stature? Along those lines, why is there such a difference between feeling different and feeling special?

  8. Sarah is incredibly loyal to Judy, even though Judy does not always appreciate it. Have you ever had a friend like that, or ever been a friend like that to someone?

  9. Judy never discovers who initiated the scandalous videotaping, nor who was responsible for leaking it. Would you want to know if you were in the same situation? Would you have prosecuted?

  10. How do you think Judy's family handled the scandal and its fall-out? Which part of it do you think was the most difficult for them?

  11. How do lessons from Ms. Doman's English class help Judy to cope with her experience?

  12. What makes Bill such an ideal friend for Judy at the motel?

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

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