|Name: _________________________||Period: ___________________|
This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.
Short Answer Questions
1. What does Reta notice on Norah's wrists?
2. What does Natalie remind her family about how long Norah has been wearing her garden gloves?
3. According to Reta, what is "full of isolated events"?
4. According to the friend who advised Reta as a young writer, what do obituaries contain?
5. According to Francis, why does everyone dismiss Norah's gloves at the hostel?
Short Essay Questions
1. Why does Reta make an exception in sending her letter to Russell Sandor, a short story writer?
2. Why don't the Winters' want to discuss the fact that Norah probably gave her Christmas package away?
3. When Reta and Tom consult a psychiatrist about Norah, what does he tell them and how do they respond?
4. Describe Reta and Lois's relationship.
5. Why is Lois's conversation with Arthur when she comes over to investigate about dinner significant?
6. Why does Reta sign her letter to Dennis Ford-Halpern, "Yours, Rita Orange d'Ville"?
7. What is Lois's true opinion of what happened to Norah that she is afraid to express?
8. What does Reta notice on Norah's wrists that cause Tom to forget his trilobites and research stress and trauma?
9. What is Reta's central point in her letter to Helt?
10. According to Gemma Walsh, Reta's friend who has been appointed Chair of Theology, the Christian faith is balance on the words "already" and "not yet." Why does Reta find this significant?
Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:
Essay Topic 1
Discuss the significance of goodness in the novel as an idea and a catalyst for change, responding to the following questions:
1. What does the concept of goodness mean to Reta?
2. What does the concept of goodness mean to Norah?
3. What is the overall message of goodness as an idea in the novel?
Essay Topic 2
Discuss the role of family in the novel, responding to the following questions:
1. What responsibilities do family members share?
2. Does Shields portray the Winters family as being functional or dysfunctional?
3. How are the Winters family members treated?
4. Who is accepted as a family member and who is not?
Essay Topic 3
Shields uses the first-person point of view to show Reta's thoughts and actions, though the focus of the novel is the mystery of Norah's disappearance and subsequent homelessness. Respond to the following questions:
1. Why do you think Shields chose the first-person instead of third-person ("she")?
2. How would the novel be different if the story was told from Norah's point of view?
3. Since the first-person is a limited perspective, how would using an omniscient point of view change the tone or meaning of the novel?
This section contains 872 words
(approx. 3 pages at 300 words per page)