Black Cherry Blues Test | Final 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. Why are Tess and the Principal of the school angry with Dave?

2. How does Dave offend Darlene?

3. Of what is Mapes a suspect when he was 17?

4. What does Dave believe about Darlene's death?

5. What does Darlene tell Dave about AIM?

Short Essay Questions

1. What does Dave learn when he is riding to the Reservation on their bus and how might that affect his feelings towards Darlene?

2. What happens that seems to indicate that Dixie Lee may finally be getting his life back on track?

3. How is Dave's lawyer feeling about Dave's case and why?

4. What does Dave dream and what might the dream foreshadow?

5. How is it obvious that Dave is starting to feel desperate?

6. Is Dave's response to Cletus taking Charlie out of the house ethical?

7. What does the Coroner tell Dave and how does Dave know Darlene was probably raped before being murdered?

8. How does Dave respond both analytically and emotionally to Darlene's death?

9. What is Dave's response to Dixie Lee's request to help and do you think it is wise?

10. How does Mrs. Desmarteau receive Dave, and what does he learn?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Dave takes the law into his own hands when he decides to beat up Mapes and Vidrine after receiving a letter threatening Alafair, Dave's daughter. Dave also takes the law into his own hands when in an earlier novel, he kills his wife's murderer. Later, Cletus does the same thing with Darlene's murderer. Discuss the following: Discuss the following:

1. When (or if) is it justified to mete out your own justice to someone who has wronged you or a loved one and broken the law in doing so.

2. What do you think it says about Dave's beliefs about the criminal justice system that he is his own judge and executioner? About Cletus's belief?

3. Do you think Dave's beliefs about the justice system influences his work as a police officer when he was one?

Essay Topic 2

Dave's wife is murdered in a previous novel in this series. Discuss the following:

1. How much do you think Dave's wife's murder influences how he behaves in this novel?

2. Do you think Dave is doing a good job of parenting Alafair alone? Why, or why not?

3. How do you think Darlene's murder coming not that long after his wife's murder impacts Dave?

Essay Topic 3

Often, authors will write about "what they know," and sometimes knowing a little about the author makes the books more interesting. Discuss the following:

1. Research and give a brief biographical sketch of James Lee Burke.

2. What in Burke's background may have helped Burke in writing BLACK CHERRY BLUES? What may have influenced the way he depicts various characters and scenes?

3. Do you think there is always some of the author's own life in his/her novels? Why or why not? Give examples.

(see the answer keys)

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