The Executioner's Song 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 does Nicole confess in one of her letters to Gary that causes him to go ballistic?

2. Where does Gary's truck end up as the police are trying to take him into custody?

3. Grace thought, "I'll bet a ________ he knew those boys were Mormon before he killed them."

4. What did Dr. Wesley Weissart diagnose Gary with when he was at Oregon State Penitentiary?

5. What does Gary assume Nicole will do once he is dead?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is Peter's reason for living, as described in the book, even though he can't handle much stress?

2. Describe Nicole when she meets Gary as the age of twenty.

3. What is one of the first signs in the book that Gary might have feelings for younger girls?

4. What does Gary make April tell Brenda after the two spend the night together at the Holiday Inn?

5. Why is Nicole taken off of Gary's visiting list at the prison, although she is eventually reinstated?

6. Describe the nature of Nicole's first marriage.

7. What is the biggest obstacle for the lawyers who are trying to defend Gary in his murder charges?

8. What is the evidence the prosecution has in the case against Gary?

9. Describe the character of Peter Galovan, a character who emerges in Book 1, Part 3.

10. What does Sterling attribute to causing the bond between himself and Gary?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

The trick with the character of Gary is that he seems to be someone you can both hate and understand. This can cause the reader to not know what to think.

Part 1: Cite at least two examples of things which may be considered admirable in Gary.

Part 2: Cite at least two examples of things which may be considered detestable in Gary.

Part 3: Do you think Gary is a good person or a bad person? What were your reactions to him in the story?

Essay Topic 2

The idea of nature versus nurture is an obvious theme in this story. One might suppose that Gary was the product of his upbringing, while others might suggest he was simply an evil person.

Part 1: Cite at least two examples of supporting evidence that the environment was the cause of Gary's behavior.

Part 2: Cite at least two examples of supporting evidence that suggests Gary is simply an evil person.

Part 3: What do you think? Do you think Gary's environment or his biology led to his actions?

Essay Topic 3

The role of family in this story is a muddled one. Both Gary and Nicole seem to have had troubles with the male figures in their lives, which may have led to their current issues.

Part 1: Describe the troubles of Nicole as she grew up in her family.

Part 2: What might have impacted Gary in relation to his male family relationships?

Part 3: If these characters had positive male role models, do you think they would have turned out differently? Why or why not? How?

(see the answer keys)

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