Essay Topic 1
Compare and contrast Ralph and Lonnie. Both young men are trying to carve out new lives but seem to have different methods and goals. How are Ralph and Lonnie alike? How are they different? On what things do they agree? What is the thing that threatens to separate them? What other similarities and dissimilarities are there between the two characters?
Essay Topic 2
Moody is a master at dramatic devices. Choose an example of symbolism, metaphors, and irony, briefly describe them and identify the technique which they embody.
Essay Topic 3
What is the overall setting for the novel? Be sure to include geography, time period and any pertinent popular culture events. Why did Moody choose to use these places in the novel?
Essay Topic 4
Coming of age is an important theme in "Shaking the Nickel Bush". Can you cite an example to support this theme? Name two...
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