Black Wind 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 virus does Kang's research lab chief try to combine with smallpox?

2. What is the sunken Japanese ship in Chapter 13 leaking?

3. What is an "evil wind?"

4. Who is Irv Fowler?

5. What is the name of the Japanese sub Dirk and Dahlgren investigate in Chapters 8 and 9?

Short Essay Questions

1. What do Dirk Pitt, Sr., and Al Giordino do in response to Raul Biazon's request in Chapter 12?

2. What is the combination of toxins used in the chemical/biological weapon described in Chapter 32?

3. What is revealed to have happened in the town of Warrenton in 1942?

4. Where was it supposed that stocks of smallpox virus were stored, as cited in Chapter 15?

5. Describe the death of the first two meteorologists in Chapter 1.

6. What does Kang plan to do with the Baekje?

7. Why does Tanaka lie to Commander Ogawa in the introduction when Ogawa asks if his crew is in danger in the book's introduction?

8. What is the outcome of the meeting between Dirk and bureaucrats from the Department of Homeland Security?

9. What do Dirk and Sarah surmise about the fishing trawler at the conclusion of Chapter 3?

10. How does Kang plan to use the Odyssey in Chapter 37?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Two women play notable roles in Black Wind - Dirk Jr.'s sister, Summer, and his girlfriend, Sarah. Discuss the place women hold in Black Wind. Evaluate the Cusslers' ability to write convincing female characters, if they are stereotypical or something unique, and what part they contribute to the novel. Compare and contrast these two women, noting if they are more active or passive parts of the story.

Essay Topic 2

Black Wind was a father/son endeavor, written by both Clive Cussler and Dirk Cussler. Evaluate the effectiveness of this teamwork. Identify any shifts in plot or tone that might be due to a different writer. Speculate as to why Clive Cussler may have included Dirk Cussler in the project. Finally, evaluate why Clive Cussler might have inserted himself into the story, and whether that is a wise choice or not. For additional consideration, can you think of other books or movies where an author or filmmaker might have inserted themselves into a story or film as a "cameo?" Is that a novelty or vanity move, or can it enhance the story?

Essay Topic 3

In an action novel, it might be tempting for the reader to skip over the "boring" parts to get to the "good parts." How well do the Cusslers perform the writer's task of pacing a novel? Discuss the pace of the novel, noting if it is successful in keeping the reader engaged through the "slow" parts, and whether or not the action sequences are well-staged and understandable. Use specific sections or setpieces in the novel to support your contentions. Note, too, any tricks of the writer's trade the Cusslers employ to keep the pages turning.

(see the answer keys)

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