The Golden Fool Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Robin Hobb
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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 wrong with Tom's cottage?

2. What does Dutiful want Tom to teach him?

3. Who is the leader of the Piebalds?

4. What does Peottre do with the gown given to Narcheska for the ball?

5. How does Golden hurt his ankle?

Short Essay Questions

1. What does Dutiful want from Tom concerning the prince's betrothal party and what does he order Tom to do? How does Golden help with the prince's command to Tom?

2. What happens when Tom meets with the Queen in Chapter IV?

3. What occurs shortly before the Outislanders leave Buckkeep?

4. Who is Starling, where does Tom see her and what happens after Jinna's when Tom leaves Starling?

5. How does Tom speak with his daughter in Chapter III?

6. Who is Thick, what is his ability and what does Chade want Tom to do about Thick?

7. What happens in Dutiful's first skill lesson?

8. What do the Piebalds claim about the Witted, and what is actually true about the Piebalds?

9. Who goes riding with the prince and Lady Vance and what does Peottre announce?

10. What happens when Tom goes to Golden's quarters in Chapter XII?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

One of the common elements of fantasy is the presence of some sort of magic. Discuss the following:

1. What sort of cultural problems do you think the United States would have if it were suddenly discovered that 1% of its population possessed magical abilities similar to the Wit or the Skill?

2. If you had a choice between having the Wit or the Skill, which would you chose? Why?

3. Would you want to part of the 1% of the population that possesses magical abilities? Why or why not?

4. Do you think most people would use their magical abilities for good or evil? Explain.

Essay Topic 2

There are a number of interesting questions raised by "The Golden Fool". Questions that Hobb most likely want readers 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 Hobb's agenda. Analyze that idea throughout the book and discuss Hobb's 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 Hobb and see if/where her life may have influenced her writing.

Essay Topic 3

Whenever reading a science fiction or fantasy novel, one must become familiar with new terminology that explains concepts or ideas that are not a part of the "real" world. In the case of "The Golden Fool", much of the setting may seem familiar to the reader (i.e. it is in the "real" world), though there are new ideas and terms to learn. Discuss the following:

1. Find five terms that are a part of the world of "The Golden Fool" that occur in the "real" world but are used differently in "The Golden Fool".

2. Define the words as used in "The Golden Fool's" world and compare those five words as to how they are currently used in the American English language.

3. There are ways of learning about a new world or time when reading a science fiction or fantasy novel. Discuss the ways you were able to understand the world of "The Golden Fool". Did you have to look up any words? What does it mean to learn a word through its context? Do you have to do that in The Golden Fool? What word(s)?

4. Were there any words you never really understood from "The Golden Fool"? Which ones?

(see the answer keys)

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