Reading in the Dark 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 happens to Billy Mahon?

2. How does Rory Hannaway die?

3. On what day do the Francis and Frances' parents die?

4. How does the boy describe how he got rid of the infestation in Chapter 3?

5. Why is the boys' mother upset when they return from their boat ride across the river?

Short Essay Questions

1. What happens to Larry McLaughlin?

2. What does the boy's grandfather tell him right before he dies?

3. Describe Crazy Joe.

4. Describe the narrator.

5. What local belief surrounds the Field of the Disappeared?

6. What causes the rat infestation mentioned in Chapter 3?

7. How can we see in Chapter 2 that the belief in the supernatural is a powerful force in Northern Ireland during this time?

8. When the boy's father takes him and his brother Liam out on the boat, what does his father reveal to them and why does it make the boy feel uncomfortable?

9. What memory does the boy have of an interaction between him and Crazy Joe?

10. What strong religious beliefs of his community does the boy share in the beginning of Chapter 1?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Discuss the theme of secrets within the text. What kind of impact does secret-keeping have on the characters of the novel? How does it affect the plot as it progresses? Explain.

Essay Topic 2

How might the story progress differently if told through the voice of another character? How does the young boy add to the story's mystery? What might we know differently if one of his parents narrated the story instead?

Essay Topic 3

Throughout the novel, the boy's mother deals repeatedly with depression as her role in Eddie's death is progressively revealed.

1. How is she involved in the mystery surrounding Eddie's disappearance?

2. How is her relationship with Tony McIlhenny a factor in her involvement?

3. Do you think she should feel guilty?

Support your answers with evidence from the text.

(see the answer keys)

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