A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

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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 do the kids help Dave do?

2. What did Dave's father die from?

3. Why can Dave's mother's nose bleed be deadly?

4. Who does Dave call for advice on his mother's nose bleed?

5. What do Toph and Dave do to the house in this chapter?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does Dave's situation change at the beginning of chapter 3?

2. In what way does Dave struggle with the memory of his parents in Chapter 4?

3. Why doesn't Dave like telling people why he has to look after Toph?

4. Why does Dave struggle to discard of some of his parent possessions?

5. Summarize the second chapter.

6. How does Dave act in the club with his friends?

7. What is wrong with Dave's mother at the beginning of Chapter 1?

8. What does Dave do during the nights?

9. Give an example of Dave and Toph's being late.

10. How do the police deal with Dave's stolen wallet in Chapter 5?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Choose two of the following people and outline his/her influence on Dave Eggers' life:

1) Toph

2) His father

3) His mother

4) Beth

Essay Topic 2

Identify the main themes of the story. Why do you think these themes are so important to the story? How does Eggers use character and setting to express his themes?

Essay Topic 3

Discuss with the students first person point of view. Why do the students think first person point of view is not necessarily reliable? What moments in the book do the students think are not so reliable and why? With the students, discuss the advantages and disadvantages of using the first person point of view.

(see the answer keys)

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