American Short Story Masterpieces 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. In which of the following New York City boroughs did Sonny grow up?

2. Which of the following best describes the genre of the stories the editors chose for this collection?

3. What school subject does Vance teach in the story "The Amish Farmer"?

4. What does Lewis complain about during his meeting with Arty?

5. What is George's wife's name?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why is Willi Varig hired to tell his story to an audience of people in the story, "Talk of Heroes"?

2. What type of relationship does George have with his ex-students?

3. What type of relationship does Carlyle form with Mrs. Webster in the story "Fever"?

4. Why has Earl taken to the road in "Rock Springs" and who does he take with him?

5. Why does Vance tell the story of "The Amish Farmer" to his high school English class?

6. Why doesn't Push like John Williams, and what does he do about it?

7. How does Eileen react to the news of Carlyle's illness in the story "Fever"?

8. Who is Push in the story "A Poetic for Bullies," and who is his sidekick?

9. What memory does Sean have of his father from when he was a 6 year old boy in the story "Midair"?

10. Why does Daniel aggressively attack Noel in the story "The Amish Farmer"?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

The story "The Wedding" is all about loneliness. First, describe the loneliness of Sam, Elizabeth, and the child. What is the same about their loneliness? What is different? Describe the relationship between Elizabeth's loneliness and her passion for reading. How do these two seemingly unrelated things affect each other? Finally, describe how loneliness brought Sam and Elizabeth together in marriage. In the end, do you think the couple was settling, or were they truly in love? How can you tell? Be sure to include examples from the text to strengthen your arguments.

Essay Topic 2

"Water Liars" expresses the relationship between truth and story telling. Choose one of the stories that the men told on Farte's Pier and express whether or not you believe the story to be true and why. Why do the men on the pier continue to tell the story? What message is sent to the reader about the value of truth, or lack thereof, in a good story? How do the stories told at Farte's Pier help the narrator cope with his personal problems? Be sure to include examples from the text that you believe strengthen your arguments.

Essay Topic 3

In the story "The Amish Farmer," Vance, a teacher, attempts to tell a story to his students to explain point-of-view. First, describe the story that Vance tells his students. How does Vance believe this story shows point-of-view narration? Do you agree with Vance? Why or why not? Then, describe Vance's students' reaction to his story. How does the reaction from the students exemplify Vance's lesson for the readers? Be sure to include examples from the text to strengthen your arguments.

(see the answer keys)

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