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 at the pond?

2. About what does Ann tell Loomis?

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

4. What does Ann see when she goes and looks out of the boundaries of her valley?

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

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. How does Ann describe the newly-arrived stranger?

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

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

7. Why does Ann decide to go down to the farm yard and what does she discover?

8. Explain why Ann is alone in the valley.

9. What does Ann hear Loomis saying in his dreams and what does Ann think about what she hears?

10. What happens that convinces Ann that the man knows nothing about farm life and what is her response?

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

As the novel progresses, Ann feels that Loomis is more and more controlling of their lives. Discuss the following:

1. Discuss and analyze two scenes when you think Loomis is being controlling. Is Ann right to be defensive?

2. How much of Loomis' controlling is based upon the fact that he is considerably older than Ann? Do you think it is a legitimate thing that he, being much more knowledgeable about many things, should make more of the decisions?

3. How much of Loomis' controlling is based upon the fact that he is a male? Do you think Loomis would be as controlling of another man as he is of Ann?

4. Do you think Ann's assessment of Loomis' mental health is accurate? Why or why not? Discuss fully with examples.

Essay Topic 3

Discuss one of the following:

1. Define irony in literary terms. What do you think is the purpose of irony? Discuss the irony of the situation that it appears the man could die from his radiation poisoning in a "safe" valley when he has avoided the same thing while walking through hundreds of miles of dangerous country. What other irony occurs in Z for Zachariah? Discuss two or three incidences of irony and whether they enhance your reading experience.

2. Define symbolism in literary terms. Discuss the use and meaning of five symbols you choose to analyze from Z for Zachariah. What do they symbolize? Is the symbolism obvious? Effective? Does the symbolism contribute to the enjoyment of reading?

3. Trace and analyze the use of foreshadowing throughout Z for Zachariah. List at least five things that occur later in the novel that are foreshadowed earlier in the novel. Does foreshadowing increase your motivation to complete a book? Why or why not?

(see the answer keys)

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