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. Where was her first overseas modeling trip?

2. Who does the narrator see on the West Side Highway?

3. Who does the narrator hope to meet in the club?

4. What does the narrator attempt to sit and write about?

5. How old is the narrator?

Short Essay Questions

1. Where is the narrator when the story begins?

2. To what does the narrator attribute his need to belong and feel desired?

3. How does the narrator describe his mother's reaction to Amanda?

4. What is the significance of the last three images in the chapter: the Colgate sign, the Statue of Liberty, and the garbage barge?

5. 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?

6. How is the narrator out of place in the sports bar?

7. How does the narrator's obsession with Coma Baby reflect on his own life?

8. What does the narrator hope for as he turns in an article that he knows is unfinished?

9. Why, after all the time that has passed, is the narrator still trying to track Amanda down?

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

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

What is the main tension between aspects of the narrator's life? Provide at least three textual examples of the narrator's struggle with this tension. Is he able to resolve it by the end of the novel? If not, is there hope for him to resolve it in the future? Will the narrator ever be able to grow up?

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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