When You Reach Me Short Essay - Answer Key

Rebecca Stead
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1. What is the premise of WHEN YOU REACH ME?

The novel is set in the late 1970s when a television game show called The $20,000 Pyramid, hosted by Dick Clark, was still shown throughout the country weekday mornings. It is this game show that Miranda's mother attempts to become a contestant on.

2. What does Miranda compare the game show postcard to in Chapter 1?

In Chapter 1, Miranda compares a postcard that has come from the producers of The $20,000 Pyramid to one of four odd notes she has received over the past few months. One of these notes predicts accurately the date on which Miranda's mother will be asked to appear on the show.

3. Explain Miranda's mother's situation regarding her job and personal life.

Chapter 2 shows that Miranda is the daughter of a single woman who works in a law office and who also dates Richard, one of the lawyers. Miranda's mother takes lots of office supplies from the office where she works, leaving Miranda and Richard convinced that she is terribly unhappy with her job. Miranda thinks her mother needs to hurry and win money on the game show.

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