Pacific Vortex 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 the Marine guard at ADM Hunter's building on Pearl Harbor base ask Dirk for when he reports?

2. What is Dirk's new assignment now that he has read the submarine log and reported it?

3. By ADM Hunter's estimation, how deep is the water where the Starbuck sinks?

4. Why does Dirk speculate that the Navy has equipped the Martha Ann with a crew of midgets?

5. How does the Starbuck hit the seafloor?

Short Essay Questions

1. In the hotel bar in Chapter 3, Adrian makes the statement: "Considering your amateur standing and less than mediocre talents, you're vastly overpriced. Whom is she speaking to and what does she mean?

2. Dirk does not appreciate ADM Hunter's highhanded move to take control of his [Dirk's] life by having him detailed to his [ADM Hunter's] command. How is he "persuaded" into it?

3. How does Adrian Hunter feel about her father? Use quotes from Chapter to support your position.

4. How are the dead bodies described on the Lillie Marlene? How does this description contribute to the myth of the Pacific Vortex?

5. A gray Dodge van pursues Dirk and the driver of the van begins shooting at Dirk before attempting to run him off the road. Unravel the mystery. Who has the motive, knowledge, and opportunity to tip off "Them," whoever "They" might be, to Dirk's presence and interested activity?

6. Cussler gives a good description of rip tides after Dirk has swum out beyond the breakers at Kaena Point. Describe them, why they are dangerous and explain how best to swim through them if caught in one.

7. How does Dirk determine that Hunter's crew has been searching the wrong area?

8. What are some ways the Pacific Vortex is different from the Bermuda Triangle and other legendary danger areas?

9. What two things does the receptionist at ADM Hunter's office assume of Dirk Pitt when he arrives in his bathing suit?

10. What is the significance of the Lillie Marlene?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

ADM Sandecker tells Dirk, "an enemy agent wouldn't have to use muscle [on you]. They'd simply send their most seductive Mata Hari to the nearest bar and let you pick her up." What does this statement mean and what is the inference being made about Dirk's character? Analyze this statement in the context of all you know about the character of Dirk Pitt. Does it seem to be a fair or consistent statement? Provide evidence from the book to support your conclusions.

Essay Topic 2

Dirk refers to the salvage operations on the Thresher, the Bluefin, the Scorpion, and the submarine F-4. What are these boats or ships and what happened to them? How are they relevant to the sinking (and raising) of the Starbuck?

Essay Topic 3

How would you characterize Cussler's writing style in Pacific Vortex? Analyze all of the elements of writing style including the perspective, bias, structure, diction and syntax, imagery, etc. Is this a laudable first effort on Cussler's part? Is there perhaps a stylistic reason it is not the first published book?

(see the answer keys)

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