The Comfort of Strangers 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 topic most often consumes Mary's dreams while on vacation?

2. Which of the following is NOT a type of map offered in the kiosks around Venice?

3. Which of the following best describes the ritual Mary and Colin both go through each evening before leaving for dinner?

4. Where do Mary and Colin spend the night in this chapter?

5. What position did Robert's father hold in London?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why does Mary begin thinking of her children in this chapter? What does she wish she had done?

2. What is unusual about Robert's interactions with Mary and Colin in this chapter?

3. Describe the gallery in Robert and Caroline's apartment

4. What does Robert offer Mary and Colin at the end of the chapter? How do they react? How does Robert counteract?

5. What does Mary notice about Colin's body as he lays sleeping in Robert and Caroline's apartment?

6. Describe Colin and Mary's nightly ritual (in the hotel room) before leaving for dinner

7. Describe the scene involving the older tourists that Colin observes from his balcony. How does the version of the story Colin tells Mary differ from the actual situation?

8. Describe the display in the department store window that both Mary and Colin comment on.

9. Describe the setting of the first chapter

10. How does Robert's father react to him soiling his study? How does this make Robert feel?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Throughout The Comfort of Strangers Ian McEwan foreshadows the tragic final event in the novel. Select three events in the novel that foreshadow this event. Discuss how these events act as foreshadowing and how their significance becomes evident when the final scene occurs.

Cite several specific examples from the novel to support your ideas.

Essay Topic 2

One of the themes The Comfort of Strangers explores is sexuality. Discuss what the novel has to say about this theme. Cite several specific examples from the novel to support your ideas.

Essay Topic 3

While Mary's children never appear in the novel, their influence is felt on the story. In your essay:

1) describe Mary's children and their life circumstances.

2) discuss at least two events where the children play a role in the scene

3) discuss the significance of the children in the scene. What do they represent?

Cite several specific examples from the novel to support your ideas.

(see the answer keys)

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