Z for Zachariah Test | Mid-Book 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. What does Ann see when she goes and looks out of the boundaries of her valley?

2. About what does Ann worry?

3. What did the man lay on top of his cart?

4. What does the man do after using the Geiger counter?

5. Since it is June, what is urgent that Ann do?

Short Essay Questions

1. What does the man do with his Geiger counter and then what terrible error does he make?

2. Why does Ann think someone is coming to her valley?

3. What does Ann decide to do as the stranger draws closer?

4. What does the approaching stranger do when he gets halfway across the flat part of the hill overlooking the green valley of Ann's home?

5. How does Ann get the tractor running and what planting decision does she make?

6. What does the man in the suit do when he finally arrives at Ann's house?

7. How does Ann describe the newly-arrived stranger?

8. What does Ann worry about when she discovers that Faro has returned?

9. Explain why Ann is alone in the valley.

10. How does Loomis manage to survive on his long journey walking from New York?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Many novels, and perhaps a majority, of novels end 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? Do you think Z for Zachariah ends on a happy note? Why or why not?

2. What are three reasons to read fiction? Discuss each one in light of Z for Zachariah and whether or not it fulfills all three, two or one of the reasons you mention. Give examples as to why Z for Zachariah 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

Ann makes the decision to observe the man who has decided to bathe in Burden Creek, which Ann knows is dead and probably poisoned either with radioactivity or some other by-product of the war. Discuss the following:

1. Does Ann make a wise decision to still not show herself when the man is entering the water?

2. Is Ann's decision not to run down and stop the man a lack of compassion? Kindness?

3. Would you have made the same decision that Ann makes? Why or why not?

4. Do you think Loomis is justified in being angry with Ann when he learns that she watched him enter the dangerous water and did nothing? Is he angry? Discuss the psychological/emotional dynamics of the situation.

5. Was Ann responsible for warning Loomis even if it reveals her presence? Do you have a responsibility to warn someone if you observe them doing something that could injure or kill them? Why or why not?

Essay Topic 3

In most fiction, readers would like all the loose ends to be neatly "tied up." Discuss the following:

1. Do you think Z for Zachariah is successful as an apocalyptic novel? Why or why not?

2. What about this book would motivate you to read another apocalyptic novel? What would discourage you from doing so?

3. Were all the "loose ends" satisfactorily settled for you? Why or why not?

4. Do you think that a reader expects that not all loose ends are tied up in a book in a series, unless it's the last book?

(see the answer keys)

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