Talking God 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 does the pathologist say about the cause of death of the body?

2. What does Kennedy tell Leaphorn at lunch?

3. Who does Fleck call to demand money?

4. Who is Hilario Madreid-Pena?

5. What has Fleck done to earn 10,000 dollars?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is Leroy Fleck's most pressing personal problem?

2. Describe what Joe Leaphorn finds at the crime scene Kennedy asks him to investigate.

3. Who has called Catherine Perry and what does she think he wants?

4. What is one source of cash for Fleck to help his mother and who does he contact about it?

5. What ceremony is Jim Chee observing and why is he there?

6. What has Henry Highhawk asked the Smithsonian to do?

7. What is a possible break Leaphorn makes in the case as he revisits the scene at dusk?

8. What frustrates Leaphorn about the dead body in the desert, and also what about the corpse puzzles Leaphorn.

9. What does Janet Pete tell Jim Chee when she calls him at his office?

10. About what does Jay Kennedy call Joe Leaphorn?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Talking God belongs to the detective/crime/mystery genre. Discuss the following:

1. Define the literary term "genre" and give several examples of three other genres in addition to the detective/crime/mystery genre.

2. Discuss two reasons why it might be useful to label a text by genre and two reasons it might be disadvantageous to label a text by genre.

3. What do you think is the difference between a suspense novel and a murder mystery?

4. Many in the world of academe do not see mystery as a serious genre, that its primary purpose is entertainment and not "worthy" of being studied by serious students of literature? Respond to that idea.

Essay Topic 2

In most fiction, readers would like all the loose ends to be neatly "tied up." Discuss the following:

1. Do you think Talking God is successful as a detective novel? Why or why not.

2. What about this book would motivate you to read another of Tony Hillerman series about Joe Leaphorn and the Navajo? What would discourage you from doing so?

3. Were all the "loose ends" satisfactorily settled for you? Why or why not.

Essay Topic 3

Discuss the following:

1. What is a plot? What are the most important elements of a plot and their definition? Do all novels have a plot? Why or why not?

2. Write a brief synopsis of the plot of Talking God, identifying where the various elements of the plot occur (Exposition, rising action, climax, falling action, resolution or denouement). Do you find it difficult to identify the plot? Why or why not? What about the various elements of the plot?

3. Identify the major sub-plots and their elements (They may not contain every element of a major plot). Do the sub-plots add to the main plot? Why or why not. Are the sub-plots interesting in and of themselves? Why or why not.

(see the answer keys)

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