|Name: _________________________||Period: ___________________|
This test consists of 5 short answer questions and 1 (of 3) essay topics.
Short Answer Questions
1. According to the novel, how fast does a black powder charge burn?
2. Richard Allen Mesington dreams of learning how to throw what kind of a baseball pitch?
3. What clears the "mummified grease" (p. 92) from the touchhole of the "sweet" rifle?
4. According to the novel, how much time elapses between the spark setting off the "sweet" rifle and Richard Allen Mesinger's death?
5. How many close friends does Richard Allen Mesington have during the first few years of his life?
Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:
Essay Topic 1
The novel infers the rifle has a will of its own--after killing Richard David Mesinger it sits in a gun cabinet "Waiting" (p. 105). Describe the narrative effect of this anthropomorphizing of the rifle. Why is the rifle treated like this?
Essay Topic 2
Why does the novel spend so much time characterizing Richard Allen Mesinger? After all, his interaction with the rifle lasts less than one second and the narrative makes it clear that Mesinger never even knew he was being killed. Within the narrative, what difference does it make that Mesinger was who he was?
Essay Topic 3
Of the major characters in the novel (Cornish McManus, John Byam, Tim Harrow, Harv Kline, and Richard Allen Mesinger), are any of them villains? If not, why not. If so, who is a villain and why do you consider them to be a villain?
This section contains 817 words
(approx. 3 pages at 300 words per page)