Amanda Wilkinson in Because of Winn-Dixie

Instructor: Wardah Khan

Wardah loves working with students from diverse backgrounds and has taught in many settings; she has a master's degree in Elementary Education.

Amanda Wilkinson is a minor character in the novel ''Because of Winn-Dixie''. Although she appears to have a disagreeable nature, she later becomes Opal's friend.

Who is Amanda Wilkinson?

Have you ever met someone who just seemed prickly on the outside? But, the more you get to know them, you find out they aren't really what they seemed at all. Amanda Wilkinson in Because of Winn-Dixie by Kate DiCamillo is a sad girl who on the outside seems prickly and conceded, but actually is just dealing with loss.

First Impression

Amanda is described as 'a girl whose face is always pinched up like she was smelling something real bad.' She attends the same church as Opal India Buloni, the narrator. A narrator is the person who is telling the story.

She also goes to the Herman W. Block Memorial Library. She describes herself as an 'advanced reader.' On a couple instances, she runs into Opal at the library, but does not say anything to Opal. For example, on one occasion, she ignores Opal, instead asking Miss Fanny, the librarian, if dogs are allowed in the library. From Opal's point of view, Amanda is unfriendly and disinterested in anything other than herself. However, people aren't always what they seem, and this is true of Amanda.

A Friendship in the Making

Opal and Amanda's friends really starts to bloom in the library. For the first time, they are getting along and equally interested in the same thing. Miss Franny is telling them an engaging story about her great-grandfather, Littmas W. Block. Although Amanda shows signs of boredom and irritation, she sits and listens to the story. Both girls begin to become interested in the story and even make a connection. It is during this moment that Amanda mentions her younger brother, Carson.

Opal later learns that Amanda's younger brother, Carson, died in a drowning accident. This caused Opal to realize that Amanda was not unkind, she was just sad. Losing a little brother is not easy, and Opal could relate to the feeling of missing somebody since she missed her mother so much.

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