The Fixer 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. According to Proshko's testimony, how does Yakov set the fire he is accused of starting?

2. When Nikolai offers Yakov another position after Yakov fixes up the apartment, what is the position that Nikolai offers to Yakov?

3. When the author describes the wind rushing through Yakov's cell, what does he liken the wind to?

4. How long is Yakov in solitary confinement before Bibikov comes to question him again?

5. To what group does Nikolai belong?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why does Marfa accuse Yakov of running a smuggling trade route?

2. When the prosecutor visits Yakov, what does he tell Yakov to have the Jews stop doing?

3. When Yakov is offered a pardon by the Tsar, why does Yakov refuse the pardon?

4. After Yakov's chains are removed and he is waiting to meet with his new attorney, what is Yakov wondering about?

5. How does Yakov try to refute the priest's claims that Jews need blood?

6. When Yakov tells his visitor that he is being held in jail because he lied about his papers, how does the visitor respond?

7. As Bibikov continues to question Yakov, Bibikov confesses that he is living in fear. Why?

8. Why does Yakov stop keeping track of the days?

9. What is Yakov reminded of as he wonders what might have happened if he simply had stayed in the shtetl?

10. Why is Yakov moved by the stories he reads about Jesus?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

In the course of the novel, Yakov is involved with two very different women - Raisl and Zina.

a. Compare and contrast these two women. How are they alike? How are they different?

b. Describe the relationship that Yakov has with each of these women. How does Yakov benefit from each relationship? What struggles does Yakov go through as a result of each relationship?

c. Is Yakov better or worse off for having been with each of these women? Explain your reasoning.

Essay Topic 2

The book is entitled, "The Fixer". Why does the author choose this title? How does the title foreshadow the struggles Yakov faces, the overarching political climate, and the determination of Yakov to keep busy while incarcerated?

Essay Topic 3

There is no doubt that Yakov has been greatly affected by the murder of his parents that occurred years earlier in the shtetl. Discuss how Yakov's past affects not only his worldview, but also his decision to leave the shtetl and his ability to cope with his incarceration. How does Yakov's past affect his mental state, his ability to reason, his ability to trust, and his ability to hope?

(see the answer keys)

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