Black Cherry Blues 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 does Dave do immediately upon his arrival in Montana?

2. Who speaks to Dave outside of Sally Dio's home?

3. What does Purcel do?

4. How does Dave spend the majority of his time in his cell?

5. Why were the charges dropped against Dixie Lee?

Short Essay Questions

1. What does Nygurski say Sally Dio is doing?

2. What does Dave do to Vidrine and Mapes and do you think this is appropriate on his part?

3. How does Dixie Lee try to pressure Dave into helping him about the conversation Dixie Lee overhears?

4. Describe and evaluate the character, Dixie Lee.

5. Describe Cletus Purcel.

6. Who is Nygurski; why does he visit Dave, and what does Dave tell him?

7. Why do you think Dave refuses to help his old friend, Dixie Lee?

8. Why is Dave moved in the jail and what does that say about Dave as a person?

9. What do you think the package in Dave's mailbox means?

10. What does Dave find in his mailbox and what is the Sheriff's response to it?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Black Cherry Blues is considered a crime/murder mystery, a sub-genre of fiction. Discuss the following:

1. Define genre and then specifically crime/murder mystery.

2. What do you think is the difference between a suspense novel and a murder mystery?

3. Many in the world of academe do not see mystery as a serious genre, that its primary purpose is entertainment and not "worthy" of being studied by serious students of literature? Respond to that idea.

Essay Topic 2

Dave visits a Blackfeet Indian Reservation to obtain information about possible murder victims. Discuss the following:

1. Why and when were Indian Reservations established? Were they moral? Just?

2. What do you think Indians at the time of the establishment of Reservations felt about them? How do you think modern-day Indians feel about Reservations?

3. How would you feel about living on a Reservation?

Essay Topic 3

In most fiction, readers would like all the loose ends to be neatly "tied up." Discuss the following:

1. Do you think Black Cherry Blues is successful as a detective novel? Why or why not.

2. What about this book would motivate you to read another of James Lee Burke's Robicheaux series? What would discourage you from doing so?

3. Were all the "loose ends" satisfactorily settle for you? Why or why not.

(see the answer keys)

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