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 the man do after using the Geiger counter?

2. Why doesn't Loomis go with Ann?

3. Where has Ann been on the morning of the opening of the book?

4. How does Ann spend much of the next day?

5. What does Ann observe as she sits in her cave at night?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does the man discover his terrible error about the Creek and what does he do?

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

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

4. How does Ann become inspired to make a salad?

5. Why is Mr. Loomis at Burden Creek when Ann returns from picking greens, and how does he think the Creek can be used?

6. Why does Ann bring Loomis into her home?

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

8. What is the situation in the valley about the water supply?

9. 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?

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

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

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?

Essay Topic 2

Discuss the following:

1. Do you think Ann is wise to leave the valley? Do you think the implication is that her dream of teaching children is prophetic and that she will find others? Why or why not?

2. Would you have chosen the same route as Ann, i.e., leaving the valley. Why or why not?

3. How well do you think Ann will survive journeying out into a dangerous world?

4. Do you think Mr. Loomis redeems himself by pointing Ann in a likely direction to begin her journey? Give an in depth response.

Essay Topic 3

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?

(see the answer keys)

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