The Lotus Eaters: A Novel Test | Final Test - Hard

Tatjana Soli
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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 Darrow say he will do with Helen?

2. What does Thao wear to the dinner she prepares for Linh?

3. What did Linh do while separated from Darrow and Helen?

4. What do some people wonder about Darrow?

5. What does Linh realize about Helen?

Short Essay Questions

1. Who is Thao and what does she feel towards Linh and Helen?

2. What does Linh wish things were like and why aren't they?

3. What happens when Helen calls Tom?

4. What happens with Robert?

5. What does Robert ask Helen and what is her response?

6. What does Helen resent about Darrow?

7. Why do Tanner and Darrow get into a fight?

8. What happens to Darrow and Anderson?

9. What happens the morning after summer festivities and how does Helen feel about it?

10. What does Darrow's wife win the right to do?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Choose one of the following to discuss:

1. Choose two significant symbols and trace and analyze their appearance in The Lotus Eaters. Are these universal symbols? Would they be understood in any culture? Are there other symbols that would portray the same idea? What are they? Why do you think Soli chooses the symbols he does?

2. Choose two important metaphors and trace and analyze their appearance in the novel. Are these universal metaphors? Would they be understood in any culture? Are there other metaphors that would portray the same idea? What are they? Why do you think Soli chooses the metaphors she does?

3. Discuss Soli's use (or lack ) of literary device (such as foreshadowing, clifthangers, deux ex machina, etc...), and how they add or detract from the story. Does Soli use too many or too little literary techniques? State which of the five major elements of fiction the literary device is related to (style, character, plot, setting, theme).

Essay Topic 2

Often, authors will write about "what they know," and sometimes knowing a little about the author makes the books more interesting. Discuss the following:

1. Research and give a brief biographical sketch of Tatjana Soli.

2. What in Soli's background may have helped him in writing The Lotus Eaters? What may have influenced the way he depicts various characters and scenes?

3. Do you think there is always some of the author's own life in his/her novels? Why or why not? Give examples.

Essay Topic 3

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 Lotus Eaters and whether or not it fulfills all three, two or one of the reasons you mention. Give examples as to why The Lotus Eaters 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?

(see the answer keys)

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