Reading in the Dark Test | Final 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. Why is the boy's mother afraid of her visitor?

2. Who begins to visit the boy's mother regularly in Chapter 6?

3. Who told the boy the story of the man with the baby sock?

4. Who does Larry meet on his way home from Grianan?

5. Who teaches the boy about sex?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why does the boy's evening with Irene prove to be a disappointment?

2. What is the boy punished for by the Dean and what is his punishment?

3. Why is Crazy Joe such a valuable character to the story of Eddie's disappearance and death?

4. What does Crazy Joe know about the mystery surrounding Eddie's death?

5. What does the boy mean when he says he has become the "plague himself" by wanting to know what had "plagued her"?

6. What happens to Jimmy and Claire?

7. How does the boy conclude that it was his mother who tipped off McIlhenny?

8. Why does Katie's family refuse to attend Meave's wedding?

9. Describe the relationship between Tony, Katie, and the boy's mother.

10. What does Sergeant Burke reveal about Eddie's death and Tony's involvement?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

How does the historical context of Northern Ireland affect the story itself? How does it affect the characters and the mystery of Eddie's death? Why is it important to know the historical context to fully understand the novel?

Essay Topic 2

Discuss the significance of silence in the novel.

1.) How and why does Larry McLaughlin stop talking? How does it affect the family secret?

2.) How and why does Brigid stop talking? What does this reflect on Larry's own silence?

3.) How and why does the boy's mother stop talking? How does this affect her inner turmoil?

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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