Reservation Blues 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. Where does the band perform for their second performance?

2. What do Victor and Junior do after the show?

3. What does Chess do at her house when they first arrive?

4. What does Chess tell Thomas about her brother?

5. What does the FedEx letter say that they receive after Victor and Checkers fight?

Short Essay Questions

1. What does Thomas ask Chess and Checkers to do and what is their response?

2. How does Checkers end up getting injured at Thomas' house?

3. What happens when the band first arrives at Flathead Reservation and what happens about time there?

4. What do Thomas and Chess do when Victor and Junior are sleeping in the van?

5. Why can't Chess sleep in the van due to Junior?

6. What does Thomas ask Chess about her church, what is her response and what story does he tell that starts her crying?

7. How does the band end up getting a name?

8. What do Thomas, Victor and Junior decide to do when Victor and Junior come over to Thomas' house?

9. What happens to the band on the way to a venue not on an Indian Reservation and what surprises the band about the incident?

10. What does the man who Thomas meets at an intersection on the reservation first say to Thomas?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Although "Reservation Blues" did not end on a happy note, many novels, and perhaps a majority, of novels do end on a happy note. Discuss the following:

1. Why do you think many (most?) people want what they perceive as a happy or good ending to a novel? Explain your opinion. Do you? Why or why not?

2. What are three reasons to read fiction? Discuss each one in light of "Reservation Blues" and whether or not it fulfills all three, two or one of the reasons you mention. Give examples as to why "Reservation Blues" is or is not successful in fulfilling the reasons you discuss.

3. Do you think reading solely for entertainment is as good a reason to read as any other? Why or why not? Can any work of fiction or non-fiction, no matter how poorly written, enlighten, teach, stimulate thought? Why or why not?

4. How does the ending of Reservation Blues affect your perception of whether it is a good book or not? Would you have rather seen a more positive ending? Why do you think the author ended the book on a somewhat negative note?

Essay Topic 2

The narrative in Chapter 4 switches back and forth between the present and the past when Thomas' father, Samuel, played basketball with the tribal police. The incident with the police shows in many ways how some reservation residents resent any member of the tribe that succeeds. While some reservation residents engage in almost hero worship of one who excels, plenty of others seem to feel jealousy to the point of hatred.

1. Why do you think some poor people might get jealous of people from their circumstances doing well? Use examples from your own life and the text to support your answer.

2. What do you think is the differences in the people who hero worship someone who has done well as opposed to ones who are angry or hateful towards that person? Use examples from your own life and the text to support your answer.

3. Why do you think the police became violent when playing ball with Samuel? Use examples from your own life and the text to support your answer.

Essay Topic 3

Titles often play a vital role in making a person decide to read a particular book. Discuss the following:

1. Fully explain why you think "Reservation Blues" is titled as such. Do you think it is the best title for the book? Why or why not? Can you think of a better title? Why would you choose it?

2. How important is a title in influencing you to consider reading a book? Explain your answer.

3. Do you think a title needs to have direct relevance to a book's content? Explain your answer.

4. Have you ever read a book that when you finished, you do not understand the relevance of the title? Does it discourage you from "trusting" that particular author again?

(see the answer keys)

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