The Paris Wife: A Novel Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Paula McLain
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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 was the visit to Gertrude Stein unusual?

2. What did Hadley's mother say about a wife who likes sex?

3. What does Hadley impulsively do when she writes her first letter to Ernest?

4. Sherwood Anderson recommends that ________________.

5. How does Hadley respond to Ernest's assignment?

Short Essay Questions

1. Describe the confrontation between Ernest and Hadley about Pauline.

2. How does Ernest's writing change after his visit to Stein?

3. What does Ernest write about his family?

4. Why did Hadley set sail for the United States with Bumby?

5. What did Hadley and her sister Fonnie do in 1904?

6. Why do Ernest and Hadley decide to return to Paris?

7. Why did Hadley not want to go to the suffragette meeting with Fonnie?

8. What does Gertrude Stein say about the baby and the lost manuscripts?

9. Where do the Hadley and Ernest live right after their marriage, and how do they have the money to sustain them?

10. What does Pauline suggest about The Torrents of Spring and how does Hadley feel about the suggestion?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

Oftentimes, a book has more of a character-driven plot rather than action driven, and oftentimes the other way. Some books seem to balance the two. Discuss the following:

1. What do you think it means to say that a plot is character driven? Action driven?

2. How do you think a plot differs if it is character driven versus action driven?

3. Which type of plot do you find more interesting? Why?

4. Do you think it is possible to have a plot where action and character development share equal time? Why or why not.

5. What type of plot is present in The Paris Wife? Explain your response.

Essay Topic 2

There are a number of interesting questions raised by The Paris Wife. The questions are ones that McLain most likely wants 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 McLain' agenda. Analyze that idea throughout the book and discuss McLain' 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 McLain and see if/where his life may have influenced his writing.

Essay Topic 3

Discuss the following:

1. Who is/are the protagonists of the story and why?

2. Who is/are the antagonists of the story and why?

3. Which 3 secondary characters have the greatest impact on the plot?

4. Are any of the characters dispensable and which ones? Why or why not?

5. Do you think this is a character-driven plot or an action-driven plot? Explain.

(see the answer keys)

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