Study Guide

Belle Prater's Boy Family

By Ruth White

Family

Gypsy and Woodrow come from a tight-knit family, especially since Gypsy's family lives right next to her grandparents and Woodrow (after he moves in). Family is super important to them all, but that doesn't mean it's without its complications. Gypsy learns that Aunt Belle never visited them all that much because she was dating Amos before he married Love and felt jealous and hurt by the betrayal. And Gypsy is having a hard time accepting her stepfather even though he makes every effort to be a part of the family.

As is so often the case, family's a bit more complicated when you get down to the details…

Questions About Family

  1. Does Gypsy come to accept Porter as a part of the family by the end of the book? Why or why not? Give evidence from the text, please.
  2. How do you think the relationship between Love and Belle changed over the years? What does this tell you about their sibling relationship?
  3. How do Granny and Grandpa feel about their daughters' estrangement from each other?
  4. Does Uncle Everett fit into Gypsy's family easily? Why or why not? How does this compare to Porter?

Chew on This

Gypsy is determined to make Porter miserable because she is afraid of any changes to her family—especially after her father's suicide.

Aunt Belle thought that by leaving her family and starting a new one with Uncle Everett, she'd feel less alone, but her new life only made her feel increasingly trapped and isolated.

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