The Glass Castle Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Jeannette Walls
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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. How long has Rex worked at the job in Battle Mountain before leaving it?

2. Rex and Rose Mary make some money for the family by:

3. How does Rose Mary try to keep Rex from spending the family's money?

4. How does Jeannette feel as she looks around her comfortable apartment?

5. What does Rose Mary inherit when her mother dies?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does Rose Mary's philosophy of life make it difficult for her to hold a job?

2. What is Rex's reaction to Rose Mary's plan to travel to West Virginia and what happens when the family gets ready to go?

3. What is Rose Mary's reply in Part 1 to Jeannette's asking her what she should tell others about her mother?

4. How does the author describe her father in Part 2 of the book?

5. Why do you think Rose Mary continues to refuse help from her adult children?

6. Why does Jeannette ask the cab driver to go back to the apartment after she sees her mother from afar in Part 1?

7. What are some of the unorthodox ways that the Walls parents get money and items for the house?

8. What is life like for the Walls children when they first move to Phoenix?

9. What gift does Jeannette ask her father for on her tenth birthday and how does he react?

10. What are some examples of the neglect that the children suffer during their time in both Battle Mountain and in Phoenix?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Throughout the book, Rex has difficulty holding a job and fully realizing his responsibilities, yet he does love his children and expresses it as best he can. Describe the dysfunctional yet caring relationship between this father and his children. Discuss examples of both times he failed his children, as well as and in which he was able to 'come through' or express his love for them in a meaningful way.

Essay Topic 2

The title of the memoir is significant in its symbolism as something unfinished, or unrealized within the author's family. Discuss the title and its significance, considering the following:

1) How does the glass castle represent the unrealized dreams of the family, or the things that the family may never have?

2) What does the glass castle mean to Rex? How does it represent Rex's unrealized potential?

2) Why do you feel that the author chose this title? How does it relate to the memoir as a whole, and to her feelings about her childhood?

Essay Topic 3

One of the most prominent themes of this book is that of forgiveness. Despite living in such difficult circumstances, and despite being the innocent victims of their parents' selfishness and poor decisions, the Walls children continue to welcome their parents into their lives, particularly as adults. Discuss the theme of forgiveness in "The Glass Castle". Cite examples from the book of how the author is able to forgive others, and herself as well. Consider:

1) How does Jeannette show that she forgives her parents, both as a child and an adult?

2) What is it about Jeannette's personality that allows her to show forgiveness?

3) How does the author's unusual upbringing actually help to develop this quality in her?

(see the answer keys)

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