How would you describe Mrs. Amos in "Bud, Not Buddy"?

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dymatsuoka eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Mrs. Amos appears only briefly in the book, and she is a one-dimensional character, a caricature of sanctimonious evil and stupidity. She is mercenary, taking in orphans because she gets paid for doing it, and she is blinded by her emotions, doting on her lying, manipulative son Todd so much that Bud "can't blame Todd for lying...having someone who likes you so much that they think everything you say is the truth has got to be a liar's paradise". Mrs. Amos is abusive, toting around a "thick black razor strap" that she uses as a threat to make Bud conform to her wishes, and locking him in a shed for the night to make sure he can do no damage to her possessions.

Mrs. Amos likes to pretend that she is a righteous woman, and she is something of a bigot, telling Bud that she does not "have time to put up with the foolishness of those members of (their) race who do not want to be uplifted". She continuously points out Bud's beastliness and ingratitude, accusing him of all sorts of odious tendencies without warrant, while proclaiming herself to be "a woman of (her) word" (Chapter 2).