The summer Opal and her father, the preacher, move to Naomi, Florida, Opal goes into the Winn-Dixie supermarket and comes out with a dog. A big, ugly, suffering dog with a sterling sense of humor. A dog she dubs Winn-Dixie. Because of Winn-Dixie, the preacher tells Opal ten things about her absent mother, one for each year Opal has been alive. Winn-Dixie is better at making friends than anyone Opal has ever known, and together they meet the local librarian, Miss Franny Block, who once fought off a bear with a copy of War and Peace. They meet Gloria Dump, who is nearly blind but sees with her heart, and Otis, an ex-con who sets the animals in his pet shop loose after hours, then lulls them with his guitar. Opal spends all that sweet summer collecting stories about her new friends, and thinking about her mother. But because of Winn-Dixie or perhaps because she has grown, Opal learns to let go, just a little, and that friendship--and forgiveness--can sneak up on you like a sudden summer storm.Yes, I know this is a children's book, and usually I don't read very much of that genre. But seriously, I had to post about this one because I'm in LOVE.
I remember picking up this book when I was younger and, based on the cover and the fact that it was about a dog, not wanting to read it. But recently I was at the book store, saw this book, read the first page, and KNEW I had to read it. It's a children's book, so it only took me, like, 45 minutes to read it, but they were pretty much the best 45 minutes of the day.
This book is so good! I kind of hate the term "heart-warming," but that's exactly what this book was. I can't even tell you how in love with this book I am. It was just so absolutely wonderful. Opal and Winn-Dixie are so lovable, and the other characters are as well. It's a whole town of truly awesome people. AND THE DOG DOESN'T DIE! That almost automatically makes this book a winner for me.
So, really, if you haven't read this one yet, take 45 minutes and do it. I can pretty much guarantee you won't regret it.