A Fistful of Fig Newtons Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Jean Shepherd
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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 happens to the narrator's car in the Lincoln Tunnel?

2. The narrator could tell that the tailgater was eating _________________.

3. On what round of the contest does Big Al collapse?

4. What happens to the boys when they are in search of clues?

5. How long is the bus drive to camp?

Short Essay Questions

1. How did Proust and Balzac block out the world and what does that same thing for the narrator?

2. Name some New Jersey characteristics that make it the butt of comedians' jokes.

3. How did the narrator prepare for camp and by what name will his group be called once they get there?

4. What prompts the narrator to think of his childhood summer camp days?

5. Why does the narrator question his impatience to get through the tunnel?

6. Describe some of the projects created in leathercraft.

7. Why was forestcraft so boring to the narrator and his friends?

8. What does the narrator think about the New Jersey traffic circles?

9. How is the narrator--as an observer of life--typically different from people like Umbaugh and Skunk?

10. How were the boys initiated into camp life upon their arrival?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Discuss Shepherd's writing style. How is he different from other writers of his time? What are some of his characteristic writing techniques? Identify some examples of his classic style in this book.

Essay Topic 2

Why did Shepherd choose to use the first person narrator perspective for the stories? What does this point of view entail? What do you know about the characters and the plot lines that you would not know from a different point of view? What do you NOT know about the characters and plot lines based on this point of view?

Essay Topic 3

Create a character study of the narrator. What are his physical characteristics? What are his personality traits? What are his motivations? What are his fears? What else can you say about the narrator?

(see the answer keys)

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