The Rifle Test | Final Test - Medium

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This test consists of 5 multiple choice questions, 5 short answer questions, and 10 short essay questions.

Multiple Choice Questions

1. What breed of dog is Sissy?
(a) Collie
(b) Yorkshire Terrier
(c) She's a mutt
(d) Greyhound

2. According to the novel, how much pressure does a black powder charge generate?
(a) Very little
(b) 11,000 pounds per square inch
(c) Enough to blow up the average gun
(d) Two British tonnes

3. How long does Sissy live?
(a) About six years after Richard Allen Mesington is born
(b) Four years
(c) She's killed by a car when she's just a puppy
(d) At least fifteen years

4. Richard Allen Mesington dreams of learning how to throw what kind of a baseball pitch?
(a) A clean dropping curve
(b) A bodyline pitch
(c) A strike
(d) A fastball

5. Why doesn't Richard Allen Mesington play with the next door neighbor Harv Kline's son?
(a) Harv Kline's son is too young
(b) Harv Kline's son drowned as an infant
(c) Harv Kline's son is too old
(d) Harv Kline's son doesn't like guns

Short Answer Questions

1. How does Richard Allen Mesinger die?

2. According to the novel, what would Richard Allen Mesinger have done had he not been shot?

3. What does the Mesinger family do in the early evening of Christmas Eve, 1993?

4. After whom was Richard Allen Mesington named?

5. Academically, how does Richard Allen Mesington perform?

Short Essay Questions

1. Describe the chain of events that leads to the rifle being accidentally discharged.

2. How many people own the "sweet" rifle?

3. What does Richard Allen Mesinger think about his neighbor Harv Kline's antique gun?

4. Do you think that Harv Kline feels he got a fair exchange with Tim Harrow?

5. What happens when the rifle accidentally discharges above Harv Kline's fireplace?

6. Tim Harrow is characterized as a fringe "crazy" person; the narrative openly mocks him. What actions does he perform in the novel that would make you shun him in the real world?

7. The Mesinger family moves several times during the novel; what impact does this have on Richard Allen Mesinger?

8. Tim Harrow owns the "sweet" rifle for a few days. He buys it, wraps it up in cloth, and trades it away a few days later. As a character, Harrow has no narrative function beyond transporting the rifle from point A to point B, just like Sarah, an editor, an antique dealer, and a gun collector. Yet the novel spends a significant portion of its space developing Harrow as a character. Why?

9. Sarah steals the rifle from John Byam as he dies; does Tilson steal the rifle from Harv Kline?

10. Why does the novel spend so much time characterizing Richard Allen Mesinger?

(see the answer keys)

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