13 Little Blue Envelopes Test | Final Test - Hard

Maureen Johnson
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This test consists of 5 short answer questions and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. What does Aunt Peg admit in the next letter?

2. What does Ginny buy at a grocery store?

3. When does Ginny say she'll open the last letter?

4. Who does Ginny email?

5. What does Ginny do while in the couchette?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

Many novels, and perhaps a majority, of novels ends on a happy note. Discuss the following:

1. Why do you think many (most?) people want what they perceive as a happy or good ending to a novel? Explain your opinion. Do you? Why or why not?

2. What are three reasons to read fiction? Discuss each one in light of "13 Little Blue Envelopes" and whether or not it fulfills all three, two or one of the reasons you mention. Give examples as to why "13 Little Blue Envelopes" is or is not successful in fulfilling the reasons you discuss.

3. Do you think reading solely for entertainment is as good a reason to read as any other? Why or why not? Can any work of fiction or non-fiction, no matter how poorly written, enlighten, teach, stimulate thought? Why or why not?

Essay Topic 2

Choose one of the following to discuss:

1. Choose two significant symbols and trace and analyze their appearance in "13 Little Blue Envelopes". Are these universal symbols? Would they be understood in any culture? Are there other symbols that would portray the same idea? What are they? Why do you think Johnson chooses the symbols he does?

2. Choose two important metaphors and trace and analyze their appearance in the novel. Are these universal metaphors? Would they be understood in any culture? Are there other metaphors that would portray the same idea? What are they? Why do you think Johnson chooses the metaphors she does?

3. Discuss Johnson's use (or lack ) of literary device (such as foreshadowing, cliffhangers, deux ex machina, etc.), and how they add or detract from the story. Does Johnson use too many or too little literary techniques? State which of the five major elements of fiction the literary device is related to (style, character, plot, setting, theme.)

Essay Topic 3

Oftentimes, a book has more of a character-driven plot rather than action driven, and oftentimes the other way. Some books seem to balance the two. Discuss the following:

1. What do you think it means to say that a plot is character driven? Action driven?

2. How do you think a plot differs if it is character driven versus action driven?

3. Which type of plot do you find more interesting? Why?

4. Do you think it is possible to have a plot where action and character development share equal time? Why or why not.

5. What type of plot do you think "13 Little Blue Envelopes" is? Explain your response.

(see the answer keys)

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