Unless Test | Final 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. The nature of _______dominates the conversation between Reta and Danielle at lunch.

2. What does Arthur accidentally knock over during his first visit at Reta's?

3. According to Lois, who makes fun of the list in her recipe box?

4. What do Reta and Tom speculate about Norah's wrists?

5. Who does Arthur frighten when he accidentally knocks over the object at Reta's house?

Short Essay Questions

1. What issue does Reta take with Emily Helt's book review in the Chicago Tribune?

2. Why is Lois's conversation with Arthur when she comes over to investigate about dinner significant?

3. What does Reta and Tom's walk in Orangetown cemetery represent?

4. Why does an older friend of Reta's advise her to read obituaries as a young writer?

5. What is Reta's impression of Arthur Springer when she finally meets him at her home in January and how do they get into a heated discussion?

6. As Reta and Arthur have their heated discussion, what three things happen that interrupt them that provide comic relief to the serious conversation?

7. In her letter to Russell Sandor, Reta states that she fears nothing. Why does she feel this way and how does she prove it in her letter?

8. What does Reta notice on Norah's wrists that cause Tom to forget his trilobites and research stress and trauma?

9. Why don't the Winters' want to discuss the fact that Norah probably gave her Christmas package away?

10. What rationale does Reta offer about the importance of novels despite moral injustice in the world?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Compare and contrast Reta and Danielle's views on women, responding to the following questions:

1. What observations do Reta and Danielle make about society's perception of women?

2. How do Reta and Danielle feel about the roles women have in society?

Essay Topic 2

As a novel, "Unless" functions as a mystery. As such, there are clues provided to lead the reader in many directions. What are some true and false leads surrounding Norah's disappearance? How does Shields utilize flashbacks and dialogue to create suspension in the novel?

Essay Topic 3

Discuss the role of minor characters in the novel.

1. Identify three minor characters and their relationship to the major characters.

2. Describe these three minor characters' physical and psychological attributes. Are they flat or round?

(see the answer keys)

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