The Year of Magical Thinking 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 did Joan wish she could use to record the memories that she included in the book rather than writing about them?

2. What book did Joan read that made her realize the significance of things she was told about Quintana's condition in California?

3. How did John's father die?

4. Where was the funeral for John held?

5. Before Quintana became ill, where had she and her husband planned to spend Christmas night and a few days?

Short Essay Questions

1. What incidents indicated that Joan was not thinking clearly?

2. How would Quintana spend weekends when she was at Rusk Institute?

3. Why did Joan believe that there was a point at which the dead must be relinquished?

4. Why was Quintanna, Joan's and John's daughter in the hospital, when her father died?

5. What did Joan do Christmas morning 2004?

6. What advice about attending funerals did Joan read that was written by Emily Post in her 1922 book of etiquette?

7. What did it mean that post-mortem lividity was present in John's body?

8. Why wouldn't the funeral be the worst thing that a grieving person had to experience?

9. Why did Joan use to tell John her dreams.

10. What would John and Joan do after the 1992 Democratic convention?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

From the time Joan was a child, she thought a great deal about meaninglessness. Discuss how Joan found meaning in her life, giving examples and quotes from the book.

Essay Topic 2

Discuss the overall mood of the book and give examples of the change in mood from the beginning of the novel to the end.

Essay Topic 3

After Quintana's release from the hospital and when she flew to California, Joan believed that she might be beginning a new season of life. Discuss why Joan believed she was entering a new season of life and why that season was short-lived. Support your statements with quotes from the book.

(see the answer keys)

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