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. At what age did George retire?

2. Who is the doctor that Kathleen plans to take George to after his hand has been bitten in Chapter 2?

3. When is the autograph dated in the novel that Howard receives as a gift from the hermit in Chapter 1?

4. How often does the narrator say Kathleen washes her hair in the summer in Chapter 2?

5. What objects did George begin repairing and trading after his retirement?

Short Essay Questions

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

2. How is Kathleen's behavior described when Howard Crosby arrives home late after having a seizure in Chapter 1, Part 2?

3. 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?

4. Who appears to be reading to George when he awakens in Chapter 1, Part 2? What book is being read?

5. How does the author go about illustrating the opposite natures of George and Howard in Chapter 2?

6. How does George become injured when he witnesses his father's seizure in Chapter 2, Part 1?

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

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

9. How does Howard find George after he's run away from home in Chapter 2, Part 2? What are his thoughts upon finding his son?

10. What does George discover in his mother's pamphlet in Chapter 2, Part 2? How does she respond when she finds him reading it?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Examine the imagery of the collapsing house in Chapter 1. In what ways does the house represent George’s body as he faces death? What are some specific examples of similes and metaphors that are used in describing the house? Where does George end up when the house collapses around him?

Essay Topic 2

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 3

Discuss the author’s style of dialogue in the novel. Why do you think that Paul Harding chooses not to use quotation marks when the characters speak to one another? How does this choice affect you as a reader? How is the choice reflective of the themes in the novel?

(see the answer keys)

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