The Illearth War 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. How many Bloodguard are to go with Shetra and Covenant?

2. What does Troy learn that disgusts him?

3. Who is Foamfollower?

4. Who does Lord Hyrim want to aid?

5. Whose skin is like ice and he is almost dead but still alive?

Short Essay Questions

1. Who comes in from Ra and what news does the person bring?

2. What story does Covenant tell as the army arrives at the Rock Gardens of the Maerl?

3. With what is Covenant still struggling and what is his fear about it?

4. What do Elena and Covenant say to Troy separately as they discuss Troy's army?

5. How is Covenant viewed in the Land?

6. What does the man who picks up a hitchhiking Covenant say about a man in the next town?

7. What does Runick relate when he arrives to where the army is encamped?

8. Where is Covenant when Chapter 3 opens and what does he learn?

9. What do Covenant and Lord Mhoram discuss?

10. What does the Prologue reveal about Thomas Covenant's past?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

There are a number of interesting questions raised by The Illearth War. Questions that Donaldson 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 Donaldson' agenda. Analyze that idea throughout the book and discuss Donaldson' 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 Donaldson and see if/where his life may have influenced his writing.

Essay Topic 2

Many novels, and perhaps a majority, of novels ends on a happy note. Discuss the following:

1. Why do you think many (most?) people want what they perceive as a happy or good ending to a novel? Explain your opinion. Do you? Why or why not?

2. What are three reasons to read fiction? Discuss each one in light of The Illearth War and whether or not it fulfills all three, two or one of the reasons you mention. Give examples as to why The Illearth War is or is not successful in fulfilling the reasons you discuss.

3. Do you think reading solely for entertainment is as good a reason to read as any other? Why or why not? Can any work of fiction or non-fiction, no matter how poorly written, enlighten, teach, stimulate thought? Why or why not?

Essay Topic 3

Thomas Covenant is in some ways a larger-than-life hero and in other ways an anti-hero. Despite incredible odds, he usually comes out on top, in The Illearth War and in the others in the series. Discuss the following:

1. Does having a larger-than-life hero who is also an anti-hero make that person less of a hero? In other words, which is more admirable--a hero who ultimately always "lands on his feet," or one who strives against impossible odds and doesn't always succeed?

2. Does a character have to be successful in order to be a hero? Explain your answer.

3. Choose one other character besides Covenant who you might call a hero/heroine and explain why you choose that person. Illustrate your statements with examples from the text.

4. Does every work of fiction have to have a hero? Explain your answer.

(see the answer keys)

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