Between Shades of Gray Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Ruta Sepetys
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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 does Lina tell her mother about people in the other cars?

2. Who is Ona?

3. What was Elena promised in return?

4. How does Lina distract the soldier watching Elena?

5. What does Lina remember about why a teacher singled her out?

Short Essay Questions

1. What does Lina recall about a shopping trip with her mother once?

2. What does Lina realize about her father's words about drawing?

3. Why are Ona and the bald man in danger and what do the others do?

4. What upsets Lina about being told to shower but why is she happy?

5. What are Elena, Lina and Jonas forced to do?

6. What happens one day when it is Lina's turn to take the buckets for the food and water?

7. What does Elena say the soldiers wanted of her and how does Jonas react to the information?

8. What does Lina tell a gray-haired man about her drawing?

9. Where does the truck go after Lina's family is on it and why does it go there?

10. What is Lina thinking about as the story opens?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Discuss one of the following:

1. Thoroughly analyze how the setting informs the plot in "Between Shades of Gray".

2. Trace and analyze one major theme of "Between Shades of Gray". How is the theme represented by symbolism? By the characters' behaviors? By the action?

3. Trace and analyze two secondary themes of "Between Shades of Gray". How are the themes represented by symbolism? By the characters' behaviors? By the action?

Essay Topic 2

Discuss the following:

1. What is a plot? What are the most important elements of a plot and their definition? Do all novels have a plot? Why or why not?

2. Write a brief synopsis of the plot of "Between Shades of Gray", identifying where the various elements of the plot occur (Exposition, rising action, climax, falling action, resolution or denouement). Do you find it difficult to identify the plot? Why or why not? What about the various elements of the plot?

3. Identify the major sub-plots and their elements in "Between Shades of Gray". (The subplots may not contain every element of a major plot). Do the sub-plots add to the main plot? Why or why not. Are the sub-plots interesting in and of themselves? Why or why not?

Essay Topic 3

Many readers of fiction place themselves in the position of one character, wondering if they would do the same thing as that character. Discuss the following:

1. Do you think one of the values of literature is to serve as a reflection of oneself? Why or why not?

2. Socrates said "Know thyself." How can reading a book such as "Between Shades of Gray" help a reader to know him/herself? Do you find yourself reflecting on your own character and abilities when reading "Between Shades of Gray"? Why or why not.

3. Choose one specific incident in "Between Shades of Gray" to discuss and compare one of the characters' response to how you think you would respond.

(see the answer keys)

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