The Californios 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 Juan say to Eileen?

2. What does Eileen feel as she suddenly wakens?

3. Who is sitting on a bench by his front door?

4. By what was Juan's people's settlement destroyed?

5. What does Sean not understand?

Short Essay Questions

1. What does Silva believe about the area and how do most of the others react to his beliefs?

2. How does Sean come to be a sailor?

3. Why do Juan and the others leave camp in the middle of the night?

4. Why is the Mulkerin family's hope in Sean Mulkerin?

5. Describe the Mulkerin's discussion about gold after Sean arrives home.

6. Why does Juan not think there is a reason to share much about his people and their history?

7. What can be seen from the Mulkerin front porch?

8. Where is Eileen raised and how does she come to be in California?

9. Who is Juan?

10. What does Juan say about men following them and what is Sean's response?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Discuss the following:

1. What do you think are the characteristics of a successful novel?

2. Analyze and discuss "The Californios" based upon the criteria you decide upon in #1 and judge if "The Californios" is a successful novel.

3. Do you think the criteria for a successful novel should be different if it is written as serious literary fiction versus fiction that is solely written for entertainment? Why or why not? Would most adults consider "The Californios" a successful novel? What about those in academe?

Essay Topic 2

There are a number of interesting questions raised by "The Californios", questions that most readers may want to consider and think through carefully. Discuss the following:

1. What does the term "author agenda" mean?

2. Name one idea/concept you think may have been a part of the L'Amour's agenda. Analyze that idea throughout the book and discuss L'Amours' probable agenda concerning that idea.

2. Do you think writers who have an agenda for writing should point it out in a preface?

3. How often do you think fiction is written with a clear agenda in mind by the author?

4. Research the life of L'Amour and see if/where his life may have influenced his writing.

Essay Topic 3

Oftentimes, a book has more of a character-driven plot rather than action driven, and sometimes it is the other way around. Some books seem to balance the two. Discuss the following:

1. What do you think it means to say that a plot is character driven? Action driven?

2. How do you think a plot differs if it is character driven versus action driven?

3. Which type of plot do you find more interesting? Why?

4. Do you think it is possible to have a plot where action and character development share equal time? Why or why not.

5. What type of plot do you think "The Californios" is? Explain your response.

(see the answer keys)

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