Early Autumn 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 habit does the passenger have that drives the narrator absolutely crazy during their car ride in Chapter 4?

2. What does Paul ask Spenser about dinner the first night that Patty is away in New York?

3. Who is the tall man with the boot camp crew-cut and a navy watch cap who entered Patty's house?

4. What is the setting of the first paragraph of Chapter 6?

5. In Chapter 4, what reasoning does the narrator give for his career choice?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does Spenser diffuse the situation between himself, Buddy, and Harold in Chapter 11?

2. In Chapter 12 we meet Hawk. What kind of a person does Hawk appear to be?

3. Spenser reluctantly takes the job of protecting Patty and Paul from Mel and his thugs. What reservations does Spenser have about taking the job, and why does he take it?

4. If you were Spenser, what would you have done differently in Chapter 2?

5. What does Spenser's rescue plan for Patty and Paul along with its execution show us about yet another part of Spenser's personality?

6. What type of person does Paul Giacomin appear to be?

7. What does Spenser's preparation of the impromptu meal in Chapter 9 reveal about his character?

8. What does the discussion that Patty and Spenser have in Chapter 8 reveal to the audience about Patty's real character?

9. In the scene where Paul arrives home, Patty is entertaining a male guest, Stephen Court. How does that scene make you feel?

10. In Chapter 10, Patty propositions Spenser, who politely rejects her advances. The two have a fairly lengthy discussion about the event, during which we learn more about Patty's feelings of self worth. What are those feelings?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

This story takes place in Boston, and all of the characters are Boston residents. The characters in "Early Autumn" do not speak with any kind of accent, most notably the "Bahstahn" accent. Why does Parker not have his characters speak with any accents?

Essay Topic 2

Patty Giacomin and Susan Silverman are two women who play important roles in "Early Autumn".

Part 1) Compare and contrast the characters of Patty and Susan. How are they the same? How are they different?

Part 2) What would have happened if those two characters, Patty and Susan, never existed in the story? Use instances from the text to support your answer.

Essay Topic 3

Spenser feels that in order for Paul to be autonomous, he must learn to work with his hands and have structure and order in his life. To illustrate this, Spenser adheres to a routine of physical exercise and construction on the cabin mixed in with new experiences like going to museums and listening to baseball games on the radio. Do you agree with Spenser that such activities and lessons as these (and the others described in the book) are important to Paul's becoming autonomous? Why? Why not? Use the text to support your answers.

(see the answer keys)

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