Fragile Things: Short Fictions and Wonders 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. In October's story, who first nicknames the boy Runt, and why?

2. Why is the young writer upset?

3. Who is in the car with Mr. Alice when he picks up the narrator at the station?

4. What do the two of them do?

5. Who offers to tell the next story?

Short Essay Questions

1. Describe how the detective solves the mystery in 'A Study in Emerald.'

2. Why do you think the narrator gives up his old life, and why does he pretend to be the professor?

3. How do the characteristics and personalities of the months in the story 'October in the Chair' reflect the different months of the year?

4. Do you think the gypsy woman in 'The Flints of Memory Lane' is a ghost? Did the boy imagine it all?

5. Why does the narrator see a Haitian coffee girl at the end of the story?

6. In the poem 'The Hidden Chamber,' is there anything that is actually hidden?

7. Why does the writer in 'Forbidden Brides...' enjoy writing about Amelia making toast?

8. Describe the things that happen to the character Amelia Earnshawe in 'Forbidden Brides...'

9. Who tells the story about the playhouse in 'Closing Time,' and what evidence is there that this person is the storyteller?

10. In 'The Faery Reel,' what kind of place is fairyland?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

What exactly happens in the story 'Bitter Grounds' and what does the story mean? Does it have several meanings? Is there a message in the story?

Essay Topic 2

How many of the stories and poems in this collection are horror stories? Why do you consider them to be horror stories? How has the author used language, structure, pace, and symbolism to create a scary or creepy atmosphere? Are these conventional horror stories or something a bit different?

Essay Topic 3

What is the symbolism of the gargoyle in the story 'How Do You Think it Feels?' Is it successful in achieving its intended meaning? Is it a real living monster, an inanimate piece of plasticine, or a metaphor for something in the story? Can it be all three?

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