Tinkers Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Paul Harding
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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 month is it every year when Howard meets with the hermit in Chapter 1?

2. The narrator says of Howard in Chapter 2, "He resented his resentment because it was a sign of" what?

3. What author did the hermit whose tooth Howard pulls attend college with, according to the narrator in Chapter 1?

4. Where was George's cancer for which he first underwent radiation therapy?

5. Who is George's grandson that appears to be reading to him when he awakens in Chapter 1?

Short Essay Questions

1. How is the natural phenomenon of lightning used as a metaphor in Chapter 1?

2. What memories of George's are described "one hundred and sixty-eight hours" before George's death in Chapter 1?

3. What does the doctor say after examining George's injury in Chapter 2, Part 2?

4. What is ironic about George's role within his family, as illustrated in Chapter 2, Part 2?

5. What "odd jobs" of Howard Crosby's are described in Chapter 1?

6. How is George's condition described in the beginning of Chapter 1? Where is George located, and what does he ask for when he first awakens?

7. How would you describe the differences between George and Howard Crosby in terms of their successes in life?

8. How would you describe George's relationship to animals and nature based upon his actions in Chapter 2?

9. When is the only occurrence when George witnesses firsthand one of his father's seizures?

10. What does George think about as he begins his chores on Monday in Chapter 2, Part 1? What does Howard think about?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Discuss the narrative perspectives employed in Tinkers. Is the main body of the story told from a first, second, or third-person narrator? How does the narrative shift in the novel? What indications does the author give for these changes in narrative style? Is the main narrator’s perspective limited or omniscient? How would the story differ if it were related with a different narrator?

Essay Topic 2

Describe the fictional book The Reasonable Horologist by the Rev. Kenner Davenport. When was this book published? What is the book’s implied origins in George’s life? What does the book symbolize? How does the language of these excerpts differ from the main narrative of Tinkers?

Essay Topic 3

Discuss the types of hospital care that someone like Howard might have received at an establishment such as the Eastern Maine State Hospital in 1929. How many facilities such as this were there in the country?

(see the answer keys)

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