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. Of what does Loomis say Ann's family probably died?

2. What bothers Ann about the man and her chickens?

3. What does Ann decide to do about safety?

4. From where is the pond fed?

5. What does the man set up in the front yard?

Short Essay Questions

1. Who is the stranger and what was his job before the war?

2. What does Loomis say he was developing before the war?

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

4. Why doesn't Ann think the arriving stranger is in a car and what does she think about what he is bringing?

5. 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?

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

7. Why is the man there?

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

9. How does Mr. Loomis seem later that evening, and what does Ann give him?

10. Explain why Ann's parents left her home when they left to discover the effects of the war?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Samuel Taylor Coleridge once said that in reading fantastical or non-realistic literature, the reader must be willing to suspend his/her disbelief. Discuss the following:

1. In Chapter 6, Ann along with the reader learns that John Loomis walks from New York to somewhere in Pennsylvania through hundreds of miles of radiation-laden country, along with other poisons such as nerve gas. Is it possible to suspend one's disbelief in order to "play along" with the scenario the author sets up? Is it likely that in the 1960s, a plastic would have been invented that protected one from the effects of radiation exposure? Does this unlikely scenario make you more or less inclined to be engaged with the rest of the story? Explain your answers.

2. What are two other improbable situations in this book that one has to accept in order to engage with the story? Do you have trouble with either situation you name?

3. Are there any situations that stretch your imagination too far and makes you unable to accept the basic premise of the book? What is (are) it (they)?

4. Are you willing in your reading experiences to accept some unrealistic situations in order to become engaged in a book? What would be the purpose of doing so?

Essay Topic 2

Ann watches the progress of the stranger and begins to worry that it might be someone who means her harm. Ann decides to hide all evidence of her existence by burying her garden and releasing her animals, then climbing up to a cave in the hills over her valley. Discuss the following:

1. Does it seem likely a fifteen-year-old girl would retreat from what is likely the only other human being in her surroundings for miles?

2. If you were Ann, would you adopt the same procedure to observe the person from afar for awhile? Do you think it would occur to you to do this?

3. How likely is it that the approaching human would harm another human who may be his/her only way to interact with someone else?

Essay Topic 3

Z for Zachariah could be said to be a "bildungsroman" of Ann, the main character. Discuss the following:

1. Define the concepts "bildungsroman" and "coming of age."

2. Thoroughly trace and analyze Z for Zachariah as a bildungsroman of Ann. Give specific examples. What does Ann learn? How has she changed? Is the change for the better?

3. Do you think young people in our modern culture go through a coming of age period? Do you think the concept of "coming of age" is inherent in the human experience? Why or why not?

4. Do you think you have lived through a "coming of age" period in your own life? Discuss as thoroughly as you willing to share.

(see the answer keys)

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