Bright Lights, Big City 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. With whom does the narrator ride the train to work?

2. Upon his return to the office, what has the narrator forgotten?

3. Why does the narrator decide to go in to work?

4. Why hasn't the narrator told his father about the divorce?

5. What happens to the narrator's deadline on the French piece?

Short Essay Questions

1. What insights does the reader gain about the character when he forgets to bring Megan her soda?

2. How did the narrator and Amanda first meet?

3. Why is the narrator so upset when he forgets Megan's bagel?

4. How does the narrator feel after his date with Vicky?

5. Why is the narrator having difficulty fulfilling his dream of becoming a famous fiction writer?

6. Why does the narrator have trouble being in his apartment?

7. Though Vicky seems an appropriate person for the narrator and makes him happy, what ill affect does the exhilaration of their date have on the narrator?

8. Why is the narrator hesitant to go to lunch with Alex Hardy?

9. What point of view does the author write in, and how is it distinguished?

10. How do the narrator's inner identity and his outer persona conflict?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Each chapter of the book has a distinct, often witty and ironic, title. Choose three titles and discuss their relevance to the chapter of the book. Be sure to use quotations, as the chapter's title is often repeated in different instances in the chapter. Take into account the novel's title--how is the theme "Bright Lights, Big City" repeated throughout the novel?

Essay Topic 2

Compare and contrast Vicky and Amanda.

1) What are some of Amanda's qualities? How do they mesh with the narrator's when the two first met?

2) What are some of Vicky's qualities? How are they a match or a mismatch for the narrator?

3) Which relationship is more promising for the narrator---a reconciliation with Amanda or new chapter with Vicky? Which woman is more appropriate for him?

Essay Topic 3

Discuss the use of bread as a symbol in the text.

1) What does bread symbolize? What is the connection between bread and the narrator's mother?

2) How does the narrator react to bread in differences places in the novel?

3) How does bread bring him absolution in the final stages of the novel?

(see the answer keys)

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