King of Shadows 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 play is Shakespeare thinking of writing?

2. How does Arby say the boy actors must function?

3. What does Nurse Stevens do that calms Nat to sleep?

4. What does Nat realize about Roper?

5. Who quit the acting company in a dramatic fashion?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is the purpose of the games and what does Nat think of some of the games?

2. What happens to make Nat feel uncomfortable with his fellow actors?

3. How does Nat increase his acting skills, in particular playing the character of Puck?

4. How does Nat make things good between himself and Roper?

5. What amazes Nat about London when he is on his way to the Globe?

6. What does Nat ask Shakespeare about Nat's choices after St. Paul's and what is Shakespeare's response?

7. Why does Arby kick one of the boys out of the company?

8. How do Gil and Rachel believe Nat Field of 1999 saved Shakespeare's life?

9. How does Nat feel about being in the late 16th century and how does Roper make it even worse?

10. What is Nat trying to figure out about his experience over the past week and what does he decide about them?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Choose one of the following to discuss:

1. Compare/contrast Arby and Richard Burbage. How are they alike? How are they different? Are they both protagonists? Antagonists? Or? Are they likable characters? How critical are they to the plot of King of Shadows? Who do you like the most of the two? Why? Do you think they each are critical to the success of King of Shadows?

2. Compare/contrast Nat of 1999 at the beginning of the story with the Nat of 1999 at the end of the story. How are they alike? How are they different? Are they both protagonists? Antagonists? Or? Are they likable characters? How critical are they to the plot of "King of Shadows"? Who do you like the most of the two? Why? Do you think they each are critical to the success of King of Shadows?

3. Compare/contrast Shakespeare and Nat's (of 1999) father. How are they alike? How are they different? Are they both protagonists? Antagonists? Or? Are they likable characters? How critical are they to the plot of "King of Shadows"? Who do you like the most of the two? Why? Do you think they each are critical to the success of "King of Shadows"?

Essay Topic 2

Nat of 1999 is a about sixteen when the novel opens. Discuss the following:

1. What are some ways that Nat seems like an average sixteen year old? Give examples and why you say the activities are average teen activities.

2. What are some ways that Nat seems older than sixteen? Give specific examples and discuss whether they seem consistent with the character of Nat as he is developed throughout the book.

3. Is it realistic to think Nat could handle the situations that arise in the novel in the ways he does? How much impact do you think Nat's father's suicide had on his growing up faster?

Essay Topic 3

King of Shadows belongs to the literary genre of historical fiction. Discuss the following:

1. Thoroughly define the term genre and offer examples of it from your own reading experience. Why do you think it is useful to categorize fiction into genres? What could be a disadvantage of doing so?

2. What do you think is the main motivation for a person to read an historical fiction novel? Is entertainment a good enough reason? Are there any other reasons to read this genre? What? Explain fully.

3. In "academe," historical fiction novels are often thought of as less literary than some other genres and for that reason are sometimes "snubbed" in the study of literature. Why do you think this is so? Do you agree with this "snobbery"?

(see the answer keys)

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