Waiting for Normal Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Leslie Connor
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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 does Addie ask her mother if she does?

2. Who does Dwight call when he learns that Denise was not around?

3. What do Elliot, Soula and Addie agree that life would be empty without?

4. For whom does Rick leave a note?

5. Why does Addie take a book instead of getting on the computer?

Short Essay Questions

1. What do Helena and her mother bring to Grandio's house and why doesn't Addie think she'll see Helena again?

2. Why does Helena have to see the school nurse?

3. How does Denise look when Addie returns home and what does Denise tell Addie?

4. What do Soula and Elliot give Addie for Christmas and what is Addie's response?

5. What were the reactions of Dwight and Grandio when they learned about Denise's disappearance when Addie is nine?

6. How does Hannah sum up her past to Addie?

7. What does Dwight do when he meets Addie after school on Valentine's Day?

8. What happens when Addie goes back to get Piccolo?

9. How does Addie react when she finds Hannah making breakfast the next morning?

10. Describe the conversation between Addie and Ms. Rivera.

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Many novels, and perhaps a majority, of novels ends on a happy note. Discuss the following:

1. Why do you think many (most?) people want what they perceive as a happy or good ending to a novel? Explain your opinion. Do you? Why or why not?

2. What are three reasons to read fiction? Discuss each one in light of "Waiting for Normal" and whether or not it fulfills all three, two or one of the reasons you mention. Give examples as to why "Waiting for Normal" is or is not successful in fulfilling the reasons you discuss.

3. Do you think reading solely for entertainment is as good a reason to read as any other? Why or why not? Can any work of fiction or non-fiction, no matter how poorly written, enlighten, teach, stimulate thought? Why or why not?

Essay Topic 2

Oftentimes, a book has more of a character-driven plot rather than action driven, and oftentimes the other way. Some books seem to balance the two. Discuss the following:

1. What do you think it means to say that a plot is character driven? Action driven?

2. How do you think a plot differs if it is character driven versus action driven?

3. Which type of plot do you find more interesting? Why?

4. Do you think it is possible to have a plot where action and character development share equal time? Why or why not.

5. What type of plot do you think "Waiting for Normal" is? Explain your response.

Essay Topic 3

Choose one of the following to discuss:

1. Choose two significant symbols and trace and analyze their appearance in "Waiting for Normal". Are these universal symbols? Would they be understood in any culture? Are there other symbols that would portray the same idea? What are they? Why do you think Connor chooses the symbols he does?

2. Choose two important metaphors and trace and analyze their appearance in the novel. Are these universal metaphors? Would they be understood in any culture? Are there other metaphors that would portray the same idea? What are they? Why do you think Connor chooses the metaphors she does?

3. Discuss Connor's use (or lack ) of literary device (such as foreshadowing, cliffhangers, deux ex machina, etc.), and how they add or detract from the story. Does Connor use too many or too little literary techniques? State which of the five major elements of fiction the literary device is related to (style, character, plot, setting, theme).

(see the answer keys)

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