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. Who does Helene say she is in her first letter to Marks & Co.?

2. Helene says that from where she sits, London is a lot closer than _____________.

3. Why does Helene spend her days wearing sweaters and wool slacks?

4. What does Marks & Co. apologize to Helene for in the November 26, 1949 letter?

5. In what form would Marks & Co. prefer to receive payment from Helene?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does Frank respond to Helene's jokingly asking for prayers for the Brooklyn Dodgers playing in the World Series that year?

2. What is the tone of the note Helene sends with her Easter gift to Mark & Co?

3. Why does Cecily invite Helene to visit England?

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

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

6. What does Helene complain about in her letter to Frank in January 1958?

7. Why does Helene joke with Frank about the British occupation of New York from 1776 through 1783?

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

9. What kind of books of poems does Helene request from Marks & Co. in her March 25, 1950 letter?

10. Why is Sheila going to say a "jolly good prayer" for Helene?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

How is the exchange of letters a small documentary of events in American and British popular culture in the 1950s and 1960s?

Essay Topic 2

What does Helene mean when she says she developed her "peculiar taste in books" from a Cambridge professor? Do you think she actually met this person in the library or "fell over" his book? Do you think she means literally "fell over" or metaphorically?

Essay Topic 3

Helene borders on rudeness in some of her exchanges with Frank. What do you think she intends to convey with this tone? Do you think Frank is ever offended by Helene's letter? Why or why not?

(see the answer keys)

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