84, Charing Cross Road Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Helene Hanff
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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. What does Helene do when she received the first edition from Frank in 1950?

2. Cecily sends Helene photos that show her husband is what?

3. What does Helene do for a living?

4. Where does the professor teach who first got Helene interested in good literature?

5. Helene describes herself to Cecily as being about as smart looking as a________________.

Short Essay Questions

1. How does Helene describe herself in her letter to Cecily?

2. Why does Helene need to stop purchasing books in 1961?

3. What does Helene apologize about in her letter to Cecily?

4. What doesn't Helene like about the New Testaments sent to her by Marks & Co?

5. What is written in the first letter Helene receives from Marks & Co. bookstore?

6. Why is Helene so thrilled to receive Walton's Lives from Frank in 1952?

7. What does Helene mean when she says, "From where I sit, London's a lot closer than 17th Street"?

8. Who gives Helene permission to print her correspondence over the years with Frank Doel?

9. What news about his daughter, Sheila, does Frank share with Helene in 1963?

10. Why does Frank drop the "Miss" in his salutation to Helene in the February 14, 1952 letter?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Helene Hanff was surprised by how well her book of letters was received, claiming it was just a little book of "business correspondence." Do you think this is how she really felt about it? Why or why not? Support your answer fully.

Essay Topic 2

Helene concludes that she goes through life "watching the English language being raped before me face." What does she mean by this and why does she use a literary reference to Edward Arlington Robinson?

Essay Topic 3

Discuss how a simple request for books that is the basis of the letters becomes a respectful relationship that grows through the years. Do you think the same sort of relationships grow out of emails between strangers in today's society? Why or why not?

(see the answer keys)

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