Tales of the City 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 is the reason Edgar gives for telling Mrs. Madrigal he would take Mona back?

2. Why does Mary Ann consider moving back to Cleveland?

3. How does Edgar react when Mrs. Madrigal says she runs a house of her own?

4. Which tenant does Mary Ann meet while she takes out her trash?

5. Where does Connie first take Mary Ann?

Short Essay Questions

1. Discuss Mary Ann's initial reaction to the lifestyle in San Francisco.

2. What is the source of Edgar's bad temper and general unhappiness?

3. How does Mrs. Madrigal react when Mary Ann mentions the picture of the soldier in her bedroom?

4. How does Mrs. Madrigal comfort Edgar after he confesses that he is dying?

5. Mary Ann and Brian discuss secrets in San Francisco. Briefly state each of the character's views on this subject.

6. Briefly compare the two women in Edgar's life, Ruby Miller and Frannie.

7. At Frannie's party, what happens to the conductor and where does he go?

8. What is Mona worried about after Michael meets Jon?

9. Briefly discuss the scenario between Mary Ann and Beauchamp in the Mendocino cabin.

10. What happens that makes Michael admit to Jon that he is trying to make himself more attractive?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

How does Edgar's attitude toward his wife, Frannie, change over the course of the novel? Give specific examples from the book to support your answer.

Essay Topic 2

How does the narrative intersect the lives of the characters in unexpected ways? Give at least two examples from the book. How does this interconnectedness contribute to the overall plot? Why do you think the author felt the need to connect all the characters?

Essay Topic 3

Explore the symbolism of parrots in the novel. What do parrots symbolize? How do parrots impact the novel? Give specific examples from the book to support your discussion and make sure that you define symbolism in the essay.

(see the answer keys)

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