The Pale King 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 is revealed to be a joke in Chapter 14?

2. What title does Lane Dean Jr. have in Chapter 16?

3. In Chapter 13, what part of the character's body is not affected by the sweat attacks?

4. In Chapter 9, what does the author say is the IRS' biggest strength?

5. Why doesn't Dean break up with his girlfriend in Chapter 6?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does David feel while Ms. Neti-Neti leads him into the IRS REC?

2. Why does Sylvanshine talk to Reynolds over the phone in Chapter 30?

3. What makes Chapter 36 stand apart from the rest of the novel?

4. What makes Chapter 20 confusing in the construction of this novel?

5. In Chapter 22, why does David take a long time getting to the train?

6. What is the purpose of Chapter 11?

7. In Chapter 9, what does the author say about the first few pages of any book?

8. How do Sylvanshine and Reynolds prepare Fogle for his interview in Chapter 49?

9. In Chapter 5, what has happened to the boy's mother?

10. In Chapter 27, why is the word "profitable" not used officially?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

Explore the purpose and role of supernatural powers in this novel. How are psychic abilities used in the novel? How are phantoms used?

Essay Topic 2

Consider the use of nick names and code words in the IRS. What do these terms suggest about the agency? What do they reveal about the IRS employees? How do they influence the setting of the IRS REC?

Essay Topic 3

Even though this novel has many characters, what makes David the protagonist of this novel? Compare his role in the novel to definitions of protagonists. How can a protagonist still exist in such a disjointed novel?

(see the answer keys)

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