A Time to Kill 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. Since Jake insists he will not be a "gofer" for the NAACP, what is the response when Carl Lee asks what will happen to the $20,000 defense fund if he uses only Jake?

2. How much does the NAACP initially contribute toward the defense of Carl Lee?

3. Lester tells Carl Lee what when he visits his cell?

4. When Jake and Buckley are in the judge's office the day before the arraignment, what does the former request?

5. Following Carl Lee's preliminary hearing, what does Jake attempt to do in the interview with New York Times reporter McKittrick?

Short Essay Questions

1. On Monday, the first morning of the trial, what positions does Jake direct Ellen and Harry Rex, his two assistants, to assume?

2. How does John Grisham depict the events taking place in Clanton as carnival-like?

3. How is Jake's closing argument indicative of it being his finest hour?

4. Upon arrival at the hospital to visit Ellen following the Ku Klux Klan attack, how does her father describe to Jake and Harry Rex the way she incurred injuries to the head requiring thirty-nine stitches?

5. What transpires between Carl Lee and Deputy Looney while the latter is still hospitalized, and how does Jake respond?

6. What happens when Jake requests a change of venue from Judge Noose following the riot and cross-burnings?

7. What does Jake when the National Guard arrive?

8. How do Harry Rex's pickup and Jake's Saab reflect more than a matter of taste, but of personality?

9. What are some of the efforts made in Clanton in preparation for the trial?

10. What do readers learn about Jake Brigance in Chapter 8?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

One theme that runs through "A Time to Kill" is deciding between the paths of right and wrong where risks are involved due to influence or threat of the KKK. Examine and compare how it is approached by Judge Noose, jury member Barry Acker, and Jake Brigance.

Essay Topic 2

Ellen Roark and Harry Rex perform legal support functions for Jake Brigance. Identify and compare these functions. How are they similar? How are they different? At what times does Jake rely on these legal support services, and when does he operate without them?

Essay Topic 3

Carl Lee Hailey clearly murdered two men who gang raped his ten-year-old daughter. While he did so in retaliation, it was not in the heat of the moment, but the result of well-planned and orchestrated maneuvering. Why don't Jake and Sheriff Ozzie Walls make make an effort to stop it before it will happen? Why is Deputy Looney, who Carl Lee shoots accidentally in the leg and which is amputated, able to forgive him, much less defend him in court? Why do Klansman in Nettles County believe the victims of the murder got what they deserved, but only retaliate given the racial differences? Explain why Carl Lee is treated and viewed with respect by the deputies, but feared by the other prisoners in the jail? Why does the jury find Carl Lee "not guilty by reason of insanity" when he was not? In delving deeper into these questions, what is the overall theme of the novel?

(see the answer keys)

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