Quiz Answers

Answers to the February 2021 Quiz

  1. What was the setting for Daphne du Maurier’s short story “The Birds”? – Cornwall in England, not California.
  2. This well-known 1947 Broadway play and the 1951 movie that was based on it take place in New Orleans and feature a woman who has “always depended on the kindness of strangers.”  Name the play and its author as well as the famous male actor who had the leading role in both the Broadway play and the movie. – A Streetcar Named Desire by Tennessee Williams.  Marlon Brando.
  3. Name the first book that featured Hannibal Lecter.  Who was the author? – Red Dragon (1981) by Thomas Harris.  The Silence of the Lambs (1988) was the second of four novels that featured Lecter.
  4. Robert Block’s best-known book is based on the real-life 1950s murderer Ed Gein.  Name the book and name the character who represents Gein in the 1960 movie that was based on Block’s novel. – Psycho (1959).  Norman Bates who was portrayed by Anthony Perkins.
  5. Who wrote The Stepford Wives?  What well-known author penned the screenplay? – Ira Levin wrote the book and William Goldman, author of The Princess Bride, wrote the screenplay.
  6. What was the setting for H. G. Wells’ 1898 novel The War of the Worlds? – England, not New Jersey.
  7. What Nobel prize winning southern author wrote movie scripts in Hollywood for a while due to his need for money? – William Faulkner
  8. What was the first name of the second Mrs. de Winter in Daphne Du Maurier’s novel Rebecca? – We don’t know because her first name is never given in the book or in the movies that have been based on it.
  9. The first movie based on Ian Fleming’s James Bond character was Dr. No in 1962.  Name the first James Bond novel to be published. – Casino Royale in 1954.  Dr. No, his sixth Bond novel, was published in 1958.
  10. The Philadelphia Story, written by Philip Barry, began as a romantic comedy on Broadway in 1939.  The 1940 film, which was based on the play, starred Katherine Hepburn in the same role she had in the Broadway play.  In 1956 it was re-imagined as a musical comedy film.  What was the name of the film, who composed the music and lyrics for it, and who took the Hepburn role in the movie musical? – High Society.  Cole Porter.  Grace Kelly.  It was Kelly’s last film before she married Prince Rainier III that same year and became Princess Grace of Monaco.
  11. Both the Broadway musical and the film, The Sound of Music, were based on what book?  Who was the author? – Both were based on the 1949 memoir The Story of the Trapp Family Singers by Maria von Trapp.
  12. This 1910 novel by French writer Gaston Leroux has been filmed many times – beginning with a silent movie in 1925 – and was the basis for a well-known 1986 musical.  Name the book and the composer of the music for the musical. – The Phantom of the Opera. Andrew Lloyd Webber.
  13. Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? is a 1968 science fiction novel by Philip K. Dick.  What is the name of the movie that was made from this book? – Blade Runner (1982)
  14. This 1939 novel about a family of “Okies” who travel to California to flee the dust bowl was made into a 1940 movie starring Henry Fonda.  Name the book and its author and, for extra credit, cite the source for the book’s title. – The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck.  It is based on the lyrics of “The Battle Hymn of the Republic” by Julia Ward Howe (“Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord: He is trampling out the vintage where the grapes of wrath are stored; He hath loosed the fateful lightning of His terrible swift sword: His truth is marching on.”)  Her lyrics, in turn, are based on Revelation 14: 19-20.  The title was suggested by Steinbeck’s wife Carol.
  15. Name the famous British actress who won her only Best Actress Academy Awards for her starring roles in two movies set in the Southern United States. – Vivien Leigh won for her portrayals of Scarlett O’Hara in Gone with the Wind (1939) and Blanche DuBois in A Streetcar Named Desire (1951).

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Answers to the August 2018 Quiz

  1. 1984 – George Orwell
  2. A Prayer for Owen Meany – John Irving
  3. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn – Betty Smith
  4. The Adventures of Tom Sawyer – Mark Twain
  5. Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland – Lewis Carroll
  6. And Then There Were None – Agatha Christie
  7. Anne of Green Gables – Lucy Maude Montgomery
  8. Atlas ShruggedAyn Rand
  9. The Book ThiefMarkus Zusak
  10. The Catcher in the Rye – J. D. Salinger
  11. Charlotte’s Web – E. B. White
  12. The Chronicles of Narnia (Series) – C. S. Lewis
  13. The Clan of the Cave Bear – Jean M. Auel
  14. The Color Purple – Alice Walker
  15. The Count of Monte Cristo – Alexandre Dumas (père)
  16. The Da Vinci Code – Dan Brown
  17. Dune – Frank Herbert
  18. Gone with the Wind – Margaret Mitchell
  19. The Grapes of Wrath – John Steinbeck
  20. Great Expectations – Charles Dickens
  21. The Great Gatsby – F. Scott Fitzgerald
  22. The Handmaid’s Tale – Margaret Atwood
  23. Harry Potter (Series) – J.K. Rowling
  24. The Help – Kathryn Stockett
  25. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy – Douglas Adams
  26. The Hunger Games (Series) – Suzanne Collins
  27. Jane Eyre – Charlotte Brontë
  28. The Little Prince – Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
  29. Little Women – Louisa May Alcott
  30. Lonesome Dove – Larry McMurtry
  31. The Lord of the Rings (Series) – J. R. R. Tolkien
  32. Outlander (Series) – Diana Gabaldon
  33. The Outsiders – S. E. Hinton
  34. The Pillars of the Earth – Ken Follett
  35. Pride and Prejudice – Jane Austen
  36. Rebecca – Daphne du Maurier
  37. The Stand – Stephen King
  38. To Kill a Mockingbird – Harper Lee
  39. Where the Red Fern Grows – Wilson Rawls
  40. Wuthering Heights – Emily Brontë

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Answers to the February 2018 Quiz

  1. “The Purloined Letter” – Edgar Allan Poe (C. Auguste Dupin)
  2. A Study in Scarlet – Arthur Conan Doyle (Sherlock Holmes)
  3. The Maltese Falcon – Dashiell Hammett (Sam Spade)
  4. The Thin Man – Dashiell Hammett (Nick and Nora Charles)
  5. Murder on the Orient Express – Agatha Christie (Hercule Poirot)
  6. The Murder at the Vicarage – Agatha Christie (Jane Marple)
  7. Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy – John le Carré (George Smiley)
  8. The Big Sleep – Raymond Chandler (Philip Marlowe)
  9. The Penguin Pool Murder – Stuart Palmer (Hildegard Withers)
  10. Death Takes a Bow – Frances and Richard Lockridge (Mr. and Mrs. North)
  11. A Morbid Taste for Bones – Ellis Peters (Brother Cadfael)
  12. I, The Jury – Mickey Spillane (Mike Hammer)
  13. Nevermore – Harold Schechter (Edgar Allan Poe)
  14. “Sherlock Holmes Arrives Too Late” – Maurice Leblanc (Arsène Lupin)
  15. The Lodger – Marie Belloc Lowndes (Mrs. Bunting)
  16. The Nine Tailors – Dorothy L. Sayers (Lord Peter Wimsey)
  17. The Red House Mystery – A. A. Milne (Tony Gillingham)
  18. Cover Her Face – P. D. James (Adam Dalgliesh)
  19. An Unsuitable Job for a Woman – P. D. James (Cordelia Gray)
  20. The Tin Roof Blowdown – James Lee Burke (Dave Robicheaux)
  21. The Three Taps – Father Ronald Knox (Miles Bredon)
  22. The Phantom of the Opera – Gaston Leroux (Raoul de Chagny)
  23. The House without a Key – Earl Derr Biggers (Charlie Chan)
  24. “The Blue Cross” – G. K. Chesterton (Father Brown)
  25. The Hollow Man – John Dickson Carr (Dr. Gideon Fell)
  26. The Silk Stocking Murders – Anthony Berkeley (Roger Sheringham)
  27. An Expert in Murder – Nicola Upson (Josephine Tey)
  28. The Daughter of Time – Josephine Tey (Alan Grant)
  29. The Daughters of Cain – Colin Dexter (Inspector Morse)
  30. The Floating Admiral – Agatha Christie, Dorothy L. Sayers, Ronald Knox, Anthony Berkeley, Victor Whitechurch, G. D. H. and Margaret Cole, Henry Wade, John Rhode, Milward Kennedy, Freeman Willis Crofts, Edgar Jepson, and Clement Dane (Inspector Thomas Rudge)

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Answers to the June 2017 Quiz

  1. A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court – Mark Twain
  2. Around the World in Eighty Days – Jules Verne
  3. The Sword in the Stone – T. H. White
  4. Watership Down – Richard Adams
  5. The Gang That Couldn’t Shoot Straight – Jimmy Breslin
  6. Riders of the Purple Sage – Zane Grey
  7. Guns, Germs, and Steel – Jared Diamond
  8. All the Light We Cannot See – Anthony Doerr
  9. Astrophysics for People in a Hurry – Neil DeGrasse Tyson
  10. The Very Hungry Caterpillar – Eric Carle
  11. One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest – Ken Kesey
  12. The Bonfire of the Vanities – Tom Wolfe
  13. Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy – John Le Carré
  14. The Heart is a Lonely Hunter – Carson McCullers
  15. The Manchurian Candidate – Richard Condon
  16. Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil – John Berendt
  17. The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat – Oliver Sacks
  18. I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings – Maya Angelou
  19. The Old Man and the Sea – Ernest Hemingway
  20. The Fault in Our Stars – John Green
  21. The Emperor of All Maladies – Siddhartha Mukherjee
  22. Friday the Rabbi Slept Late – Harry Kemelman
  23. One Hundred Years of Solitude – Gabriel García Márquez
  24. The Phantom of the Opera – Gaston Leroux
  25. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo – Stieg Larsson
  26. The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde – Robert Louis Stevenson
  27. Things Fall Apart – Chinua Achebe
  28. The Talented Mr. Ripley – Patricia Highsmith
  29. Their Eyes Were Watching God – Zora Neale Hurston
  30. The Master and Margarita – Mikhail Bulgakov

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Answers to the May 2017 Quiz

  1. B_n-H_r – Ben-Hur by Lew Wallace
  2. D_n   Q__x_t_ – Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes
  3. Fr__k_n_m_cs – Freakonomics by Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner
  4. _   T_l_   _f   Tw_   C_t__s – A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens
  5. Th_   Z__k__p_r’s   W_f_ –The Zookeeper’s Wife by Diane Ackerman
  6. Th_   Sw_rd   _n   th_   St_n_ – The Sword in the Stone by T. H. White
  7. _r__nd   th_   W_rld   _n   80   D_ys – Around the World in 80 Days by Jules Verne
  8. Fl_w_rs   f_r   _lg_rn_n – Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes
  9. _   B___t_f_l   M_nd – A Beautiful Mind by Sylvia Nasar
  10. S_l_nt    Spr_ng – Silent Spring by Rachel Carson
  11. Th_   M_rd_r   _f   R_g_r   _ckr_yd – The Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha Christie
  12. Th_   W_r   _f   th_   W_rlds – The War of the Worlds by H. G. Wells
  13. Th   G_rl   Wh_   Pl_y_d   w_th   F_r_ – The Girl Who Played with Fire by Stieg Larsson
  14. P_t   S_m_t_ry – Pet Sematary by Stephen King
  15. Th_   St_pf_rd   W_v_s – The Stepford Wives by Ira Levin
  16. Th_   H__s_   _f   th_   S_v_n   G_bl_s – The House of the Seven Gables by Nathaniel Hawthorne
  17. Th_   S__nd   _nd   th_   F_ry – The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner
  18. Th_   Gr__t   G_tsby – The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
  19. Th_   P__s_nw__d   B_bl_ – The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver
  20. G_ns,   G_rms,   _nd   St__l – Guns, Germs, and Steel by Jared Diamond
  21. Th_   _mp_r_r   _f   _ll   M_l_d__s – The Emperor of All Maladies by Siddhartha Mukherjee
  22. Th_   F__lt   _n   __r   St_rs – The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
  23. _nn_   K_r_n_n_ – Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy
  24. G_n_   w_th   th_   W_nd – Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell
  25. M_d_m_   B_v_ry – Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert
  26. Z_rb_   th_   Gr__k – Zorba the Greek by Nikos Kazantzakis
  27. Th_   M_nch_r__n   C_nd_d_t_ – The Manchurian Candidate by Richard Condon
  28. Th_   T_l_nt_d   Mr.   R_pl_y – The Talented Mr. Ripley by Patricia Highsmith
  29. M_dn_ght   _n   th_   G_rd_n   _f   G__d   _nd   _v_l – Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil by John Berendt
  30. Th_   _mm_rt_l   L_f_   _f   H_nr__tt_   L_cks – The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot

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Answers to the January 2017 Quiz

  1. Rhett Butler in Margaret Mitchell’s Gone with the Wind – Clark Gable
  2. Dorothy in L. Frank Baum’s The Wonderful Wizard of Oz – Judy Garland
  3. Yuri Zhivago  in Boris Pasternak’s Dr. Zhivago – Omar Sharif
  4. Sam Spade in Dashiell Hammett’s The Maltese Falcon – Humphrey Bogart
  5. McMurphy in Ken Kesey’s One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest – Jack Nicholson
  6. Scarlett O’Hara in Margaret Mitchell’s Gone  with the Wind – Vivien Leigh
  7. Blanche DuBois in Tennessee Williams’ play A Streetcar Named Desire – Vivien Leigh (Leigh, a British actress, is best known for her portrayal’s of two southern belles.)
  8. The Cowardly Lion in L. Frank Baum’s The Wonderful Wizard of Oz – Bert Lahr
  9. Benjamin Braddock in Charles Webb’s The Graduate – Dustin Hoffman
  10. Celie in Alice Walker’s The Color Purple – Whoopi Goldberg
  11. Michael Corleone in Mario Puzzo’s The Godfather – Al Pacino
  12.  Hermione Granger in J. K.  Rowling’s Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (or Harry Potter and The Philosopher’s Stone) – Emma Watson
  13. Forrest Gump in Winston Groom’s Forrest Gump – Tom Hanks
  14. Princess Buttercup in William Goldman’s The Princess Bride – Robin Wright
  15. Aibileen Clark in Kathryn Stockett’s The Help – Viola Davis
  16. Katniss Everdeen in Suzanne Collins’ The Hunger Games – Jennifer Lawrence
  17. Tom Joad in John Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath – Henry Fonda
  18. John Hammond in Michael Crichton’s Jurassic Park – Richard Attenborough
  19. Lora Meredith in Fannie Hurst’s Imitation of Life (1959) – Lana Turner
  20. Sophie Zawistowska in William Styron’s Sophie’s Choice – Meryl Streep

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Answers to the November 2016 Quiz

  1. Nick and Nora’s dog – Asta
  2. Dorothy’s dog – Toto
  3. The lion in C. S. Lewis’ classic The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe – Aslan
  4. Bill  Sikes’ dog – Bulls-Eye
  5. Dog that answered “the call of the wild” – Buck
  6. Harry Potter’s owl – Hedwig
  7. Mowgli’s black panther friend – Bagheera
  8. Mowgli’s bear friend – Baloo
  9. Famous collie in books, on TV, and in the movies – Lassie
  10. Evil snake in Disney’s Robin Hood – Sir Hiss
  11. Dog in The Phantom Tollbooth – Tock
  12. Wendy’s dog – Nana
  13. Beatrix Potter’s famous rabbit – Peter
  14. Rabid St. Bernard in a Stephen King novel – Cujo
  15. Dominant Berkshire Boar in Animal Farm – Napoleon
  16. Bengal tiger in Life of Pi – Richard Parker
  17. Melville’s white whale – Moby Dick
  18. Anna Sewell’s equine creation – Black Beauty
  19. E. B. White’s beloved spider – Charlotte
  20. Cherished dog in Disney movie that becomes rabid – Old Yeller
  21. Trouble-making Siamese cats in Lady and the Tramp – Si and Am
  22. Faithfull Skye Terrier that laid on his master’s grave in Edinburgh – Bobby
  23. Dr. Dolittle’s parrot – Polynesia
  24. Tarzan’s adoptive mother – Kala
  25. H. A. Rey’s curious creation – George

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Answers to the September 2016 Quiz

  1. From what illness do the two protagonists in John Green’s novel The Fault in Our Stars suffer? – Cancer
  2. Where does the title of the book The Fault in Our Stars come from? – It is taken from Shakespeare’s play Julius Caesar where Cassius says, “The fault, dear Brutus is not in our stars / But in ourselves, that we are underlings.”
  3. Who was Hamnet? – He was Shakespeare’s only son.  Hamnet died at the age of 11, possibly from bubonic plague.
  4. In 1535 the first English translation of the Bible was printed in England.  Who is credited with the translation? – William Tyndale
  5. The first volume of this magnificent dictionary was published on February 1, 1884 – a quarter-century after it was begun.  Name the dictionary. – The Oxford English Dictionary
  6. What famous American writer was a prisoner of war in Dresden, Germany when it was extensively bombed by the United States during World War II? – Kurt Vonnegut
  7. Where was Elmore Leonard born? – New Orleans, Louisiana
  8. What is the real name of the author who published a novel under the name of Currer Bell? – Charlotte Brontë
  9. Heathcliff is one of the main characters in Wuthering Heights.  What is his full name? – He is simply called Heathclliff throughout the novel.
  10. Many authors had full-time professions before they became writers.  What was the profession of Arthur Conan Doyle? John Grisham? – Doyle was a physician and Grisham was an attorney.
  11. The Kitchen God’s Wife is the follow-up to what well-known novel by what well-known author? – The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan
  12. In a well-known short story by Herman Melville the title character says repeatedly to his employer, “I would prefer not to.”  What is the title of the short story? – “Bartleby, the Scrivener: A Story of Wall Street”
  13. Name Joan Rivers’ last book. – Diary of a Mad Diva
  14. What contemporary of Shakespeare wrote the plays Doctor Faustus and The Jew of Malta? – Christopher Marlowe
  15. Donna Tartt won the 2014 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction for what novel? – The Goldfinch
  16. Juno Díaz won the 2008 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction for what novel? – The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao
  17. What Irish writer wrote the play Juno and the Paycock? – Seán O’Casey
  18. Who wrote the 1957 novel Doctor Zhivago, and who played the part of Zhivago in the 1965 movie adaptation of the novel ? – Boris Pasternak wrote it and Omar Sharif played the part of Zhivago.
  19. Colson  Whitehead’s latest novel is an Oprah Winfrey book club pick.  Name it. – The Underground Railroad
  20. This  2010 book by Rebecca Skloot was very popular when published and remains on the New York Times paperback nonfiction bestseller list to this day.  Name it. – The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks

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Answers to the July 2016 Quiz

  • Beloved by Toni Morrison
  • Death Comes for the Archbishop by Willa Cather
  • Emma by Jane Austin
  • Ethan Frome by Edith Wharton
  • Excellent Women by Barbara Pym
  • Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë
  • Like Water for Chocolate by Laura Esquivel
  • Peyton Place by Grace Metalious
  • Silas Marner by George Eliot
  • The Awakening by Kate Chopin
  • The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath
  • The Color Purple by Alice Walker
  • The Good Earth by Pearl S. Buck
  • The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
  • The House on Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros
  • The Japanese Lover by Isabel Allende
  • The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan
  • The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver
  • The Red Tent by Anita Diamant
  • The Talented Mr. Ripley by Patricia Highsmith
  • Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston
  • To the Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf
  • Uncle Tom’s Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe
  • Wide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys
  • Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë

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Answers to the June 2016 Quiz

  1. This man probed the psyches of his patients using a concept he invented called psychoanalysis.  Name him. –  Sigmund Freud
  2.  This well-known Russian author suffered from epileptic seizures and was a compulsive gambler.  What was his name? – Fyodor Dostoyevsky
  3.  This Russian composer is remembered for his operas and symphonies as well as for the ballets Swan Lake and Sleeping Beauty. Who was he? – Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky
  4.  This famous amusement park is located on the southern edge of Brooklyn.  The first word in its name is the Dutch word for “rabbbit.”  Name this amusement park. – Coney Island
  5.  This German-born physicist was named Person of the Century by Time magazine in 2000.  Name him. – Albert Einstein
  6.  This composer is best known for his ragtime compositions which had an influence on the development of jazz.  A version of his composition, “The Entertainer” was used in the 1973 movie The Sting. – Scott Joplin
  7.  This film pioneer is best remembered (though not fondly by many) for his very popular, very racist 1915 silent film The Birth of a Nation.  In response to the criticism this film received, he directed Intolerance in 1916 which focused on intolerance throughout human history. Who was this famous/infamous man? – D. W. Griffith
  8.  This derogatory word refers to people who harbor a hatred of technology.  It refers to a group of disgruntled English textile workers who rebelled against new technologies that threatened their jobs. – Luddites
  9.  He was born Denton True Young on a farm in Ohio in 1867.  He received his nickname after throwing a number of warm-up pitches at a wooden fence.  Someone said the fence looked like a cyclone had hit it.  A famous baseball award is named after him.  Name the award. – The Cy Young Award
  10.  The American film director Hal Roach created this gang of children that is still fondly remembered.  Alfalfa was probably the best known of the bunch.  Name the group. – The Little Rascals
  11.  She and her lover, Alice B. Toklas, entertained many of the most famous writers and artists of their time in their apartment in Paris.  She also wrote several books.  Who was she? – Gertrude Stein
  12.  This English novelist was controversial for the sexual themes of many of his novels.  His last work, about a married woman who has an affair with someone outside her social class, was published in 1928, but was banned from the United States until 1959.  Name the author and the novel. – D. H. Lawrence, Lady Chatterley’s Lover
  13.  He is considered one of the greatest American songwriters who ever lived though he was born in Russia.  Two of his best loved compositions are “White Christmas,” and “God Bless America.”  His real name was Israel Isidore Balene, but he later changed his name.  By what name do we know him? – Irving Berlin
  14.  This 1927 classic movie is often referred to as the first “talkie” though most of it was your standard silent movie.  Al Jolson played a Jewish cantor’s son who wanted to sing popular music.  Name the movie. – The Jazz Singer
  15.  In the early part of the twentieth century Henry Ford mass produced an automobile and thereby revolutionized not only the auto industry, but many other industries as well.  He sold about 15 million of the first car model that he produced.  What was that car called? – The Model T
  16.  He was “born” in a 1928 Walt Disney cartoon, though his name in it was Steamboat Willie.  By what name did this iconic Disney character later become known? – Mickey Mouse
  17.  The Eighteenth Amendment created it, and the Twenty-First Amendment did away with it.  What was “it”? – Prohibition
  18.  One of the most moving documents to come out of World War II was the diary of a young Jewish girl in the Netherlands.  Found after her death, it became a book, a play, and a movie.  Name the girl. – Anne Frank
  19.  In 1935 this brother team – one a composer, the other a lyricist – created a work that some consider a Broadway musical though it is actually the first American opera.  Name the brothers and the opera. – George and Ira Gershwin, Porgy and Bess
  20.  “While working one day, [Pennsylvania engineer Richard] James accidentally dropped one of his springs and watched it smoothly step from his shelf to a stack of books to a tabletop and on down to the floor where it coiled back into a perfect cylinder.”  He immediately thought this spring would make a wonderful toy.  He showed it to his wife who gave it its name.  What name did she give it? – Slinky
  21.  This well-known American chef and writer moved to Paris in 1948, attended le Cordon Bleu cooking school and wrote a series of cookbooks including the very popular Mastering the Art of French Cooking.  She also appeared on public television for many years and won an Emmy Award.  Who was this talented woman? – Julia Childs
  22.  This composer/conductor was responsible for introducing millions of children (and adults) to classical music through his Young People’s Concerts which aired on CBS between 1958 and 1972.  Some of those concerts are still available on DVDs.  Who was the creator of those concerts? – Leonard Bernstein
  23.  Her 1962 book about the harmful effects of the pesticide DDT on birds and other wildlife was largely responsible for bringing the hazards of chemicals on ecosystems to the attention of millions of Americans.  One group of animals that was being effected, she claimed, was birds.  What was her name, and what was the name of her influential book? – Rachel Carson, Silent Spring
  24.  This Edward Albee play about a battling husband and wife was made into a 1966 motion picture starring Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton.  What is the name of Albee’s disturbing (in my opinion) play? – Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf
  25.  In 1980 at the end of the second season of the extremely popular TV series Dallas, someone shot the evil J. R. Ewing while he was in his office.  Throughout the summer everyone, or so it seemed, was talking about who they thought shot the rat.  Even the cast members didn’t know because every major cast member filmed a scene in which he/she was shown as the shooter.  On November 21, 1980 the assailant’s identity was disclosed to over 40 million viewers – including many cast members who didn’t know because a decision wasn’t made until the last minute.  Now, answer the question that was on everyone’s lips: Who shot J. R.? – Kristen Shepard who was Sue Ellen Ewing’s scheming sister

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Answers to the April 2016 Quiz

  1. In Owen Wister’s 1902 novel a character says, “When you call me that, smile.”  Who is he? – The Virginian which is also the title of the novel.
  2. Harper Lee recently died.  What was her first name? – Nelle (Ellen spelled backward)
  3. In what science fiction novel was the word “grok” coined? – Grok” was coined by science fiction writer Robert A. Heinlein in his 1961 novel Stranger in a Strange Land.
  4. Who did Zelda Sayre marry? – F. Scott Fitzgerald
  5. What famous poet was born on the island of Lesbos in 630 BCE? – Sappho
  6. The Bible (Matthew 7:3 KJV) speaks of a “mote” in one’s eye.  What is a “mote”? – It is a tiny speck of dust or some other small particle such as a splinter.
  7. In which Victor Hugo novel is La Esmeralda a major character? – The Hunchback of Notre Dame“Esmeralda” is the Spanish word for “emerald.”
  8. Which author (along with her husband) established Hogarth Press? – Virginia Woolf
  9. What is the title of Stephen King’s novel about a pet cemetery? – Pet Sematary
  10. The 1926 novel Show Boat was the basis for the Rodgers & Hammerstein musical of the same name.  Who wrote the novel? – Edna Ferber
  11. Stephen Dedalus was the alter ego of what famous writer? – James Joyce
  12. Name the valet in P. G. Wodehouse’s stories that feature the bumbling Bertie Wooster. – Jeeves
  13. What is the real name of author Robert Galbraith? – J. K. Rowling
  14. Who was the first American  to make his living as a writer? – Washington Irving
  15. What book was John Milton’s follow-up to Paradise Lost? – Paradise Regained
  16. What is Dune in Frank Herbert’s novel Dune? – a planet
  17. In what novel does Sancho Panza appear? – Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes
  18. What is Mr. Darcy’s first name in Pride and Prejudice? – Fitzwilliam
  19. In which tragedy by Shakespeare does a handkerchief play a major role? – Othello
  20. In which Charles Dickens novel does Nell Trent appear? – The Old Curiosity Shop

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Answers to the March 2016 Quiz

  1. remand – place a defendant on bail or in custody especially when a trial is adjourned He was remanded to the custody of his parents until the trial resumed.
  2. truculent – eager or quick to argue or fight; aggressively; defiant He was truculent until the day he died.
  3. chimera – something hoped or wished for that is illusory or impossible to achieve  Your ideas of complete equality are nothing more than a chimera. (Chimera in Greek mythology was a fire-breathing female monster with a lion’s head, a goat’s body, and a serpent’s tail.)
  4. pluperfect – more than perfect My granddaughter is the pluperfect child. (In Latin plus quam perfectum means more than perfect.)
  5. sibilant – sounded with a hissing effect (as with s or sh) He spoke in my ear with a sibilant whisper.
  6. beryl – commonly a woman’s name, but also a transparent pale green, blue, or yellow mineral consisting of a silicate of beryllium and aluminum which is sometimes used as a gemstone
  7. tonne – a metric ton equal to 1,000 kilograms (2,205 lbs.)
  8. cruciform – something shaped like or having a shape somewhat like a cross (from the Latin crux or cruc- which means cross)
  9. chandler – someone who manufactures or sells candles (also the basis for the word chandelier)
  10. collier – a coal miner (from coal + ier)
  11. Argentina – a country in South America derived from the Latin word argentum which means silver (Argentina is the only country named after an element – though there are some elements named after countries.)
  12. knight-errant – a medieval knight wandering in search of chivalrous adventures (Yes, I’m reading Don Quixote.)
  13. descry – a poetic or literary term meaning catch sight of
  14. scotch – put an end to; stifle We thought we would use Dad’s car, but he quickly scotched that idea.
  15. métier – a profession especially one that a person is good at His métier was carpentry and he made a good living at it.
  16. parlous – full of danger or uncertainty; precarious The economy was in a parlous state.
  17. suss – figure out; realize She sussed out immediately that something was wrong.
  18. visceral – related to one’s deep feelings rather than to one’s intellect
  19. nonplussed – surprised or confused; in the U.S. it can mean just the opposite: unperturbed (Such words are called auto-antonyms or contronyms.)
  20. miasma – an unpleasant smell or atmosphere A miasma of despair lay over the slums.

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Answers to the January 2016 Quiz

  1. Arthur Conan Doyle, second Sherlock Holmes novelThe Sign of the Four
  2. Arthur Conan Doyle, small seeds – “The Five Orange Pips”
  3. Nicholas Meyer, Holmes’ favorite amount – The Seven-Per-Cent Solution
  4. Richard Henry Dana, Jr., sailing – Two Years Before the Mast
  5. Dodie Smith, spotted dogs – The Hundred and One Dalmatians
  6. Jules Verne, travel by rail and steamer – Around the World in Eighty Days
  7. Jules Verne, travel by another means – 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea
  8. Nathaniel Hawthorne, a house – The House of Seven Gables
  9. Arthur Schlesinger, Jr., a white house – A Thousand Days: John F. Kennedy in the White House
  10. Arthur C. Clark, Hal – 2001: A Space Odyssey
  11. Khaled Hosseini, Mariam and Laila – A Thousand Splendid Suns
  12. John O’Hara, telephone number – Butterfield 8
  13. Dorothy L. Sayers, bells are ringing – The Nine Tailors
  14. Stephen R. Covey, help yourself – The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People
  15. Leon Uris, a street address is Warsaw – Mila 18
  16. Gary D. Chapman, relationships – The 5 Love Languages
  17. Anton Chekhov, relatives – The Three Sisters
  18. Alexander Dumas, Cardinal Richelieu – The Three Musketeers
  19. Charles Dickens, London and Paris – A Tale of Two Cities
  20. Gabriel Garcia Márquez, isolation – One Hundred Years of Solitude
  21. Alexander McCall Smith, I spy – The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency
  22. Mitch Albom, hereafter – The Five People You Meet in Heaven
  23. Graham Greene, Harry Lime – The Third Man
  24. Judy Blume, elementary school – Tale of a Fourth Grade Nothing
  25. W. Somerset Maugham, moon and money – The Moon and Sixpence

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Answers to the October 2015 Quiz

  1. Royal Flash by George MacDonald Fraser – Harry Flashman
  2. The Last of the Mohicans by James Fenimore Cooper – Chingachgook
  3. Girl with a Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier – Griet
  4. The Catcher in the Rye by J. D. Salinger – Holden Caulfield
  5. The Woman in White by Wilke Collins – Anne Catherick
  6. Don Quixote by Cervantes – Alonso Quixano
  7. The Old Man and The Sea by Ernest Hemingway – Santiago
  8. Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn – Amy Dunne
  9. The Invisible Man by H. G. Wells – Griffin
  10. The Taming of the Shrew by William Shakespeare – Katherina
  11. The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas – Edmond Dantès
  12. Mockingbird by Charles J. Shields – Harper Lee
  13. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson – Lisbeth Salander
  14. Enter the Saint by Leslie Charteris – Simon Templar
  15. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak – Liesel Meminger
  16. The Mayor of Casterbridge by Thomas Hardy – Michael Henchard
  17. The Hunchback of Notre Dame by Victor Hugo – Quasimodo
  18. The Manchurian Candidate by Richard Condon – Johnny Iselin
  19. Native Son by Richard Wright – Bigger Thomas
  20. Loving Frank by Nancy Horan – Frank Lloyd Wright
  21. The Sea-Wolf by Jack London – Wolf Larsen
  22. The Spy Who Came In From the Cold by John Le Carré – Alec Leamas
  23. The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini – Hassan
  24. The Princess Bride by William Goldman – Buttercup
  25. One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest by Ken Kesey – Randle McMurphy
  26. All the King’s Men by Robert Penn Warren – Willie Stark
  27. The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins – Rachael Watson
  28. Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney – Greg Heffley
  29. The Client by John Grisham – Mark Sway
  30. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J. K. Rowling – Sirius Black

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Answers to the September 2015 Quiz

  1. Who wrote The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo? – Stieg Larsson
  2. Who wrote The Girl in the Spider’s Web? – David Lagercrantz
  3. Name Jonathan Franzen’s latest novel. – Purity
  4. Name the famous neurologist and author who recently died at the age of 82. – Oliver Sacks
  5. This theoretical physicist has become almost totally immobilized by amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), but he continues to produce books such as A Brief History of Time. Name him. – Stephen Hawking
  6. Name the book that was recently released by Harper Lee. – Go Set a Watchman
  7. Name the author of The Girl on the Train. – Paula Hawkins
  8. Name the first of Elena Ferrante’s Neapolitan novels. – My Brilliant Friend
  9. Sue Grafton is writing a novel for each letter in the alphabet. Name her latest novel. – X
  10. Name E. L. James’ latest novel. – Grey: Fifty Shades of Grey as Told by Christian
  11. Name the current New York Times bestseller by Anthony Doerr. – All the Light We Cannot See
  12. Name the author of Finders Keepers. – Stephen King
  13. Name Laura Hillenbrand’s book that has recently been made into a movie. – Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption
  14. Name the bestselling nonfiction book by Rebecca Skloot. – The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks
  15. What is the name of the latest nonfiction book by David McCullough? – The Wright Brothers
  16. Name Erik Larson’s latest book. – Dead Wake: The Last Crossing of the Lusitania
  17. At ninety he has recently been diagnosed with brain cancer. Name him and his latest book. – President Jimmy Carter, A Full Life: Reflections at Ninety
  18. Tracy Daugherty has recently written a biography of author Joan Didion. Name it. – The Last Love Song: A Biography of Joan Didion
  19. Name the nonconformist singer who has just written an autobiography titled It’s a Long Story: My Life. – Willie Nelson (with David Ritz)
  20. Who wrote Jerry Lee Lewis: His Own Story? – Rick Bragg
  21. Who wrote Between the World and Me? – Ta-Nehisi Coates
  22. Who wrote Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Old School? – Jeff Kinney
  23. Who wrote Two Years Eight Months and Twenty-Eight Nights? – Salman Rushdie
  24. What recently deceased author wrote The Shepherd’s Crown? – Terry Pratchett
  25. A new Mitford novel, Come Rain or Come Shine, will be released on September 22. Name its author. – Jan Karon

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Answers to the July 2015 Quiz

  1. Truman Capote considered naming the protagonist of one of his works Connie Gustafson. What name did he finally give her? – Holly Golightly
  2. “A story has no beginning or end: arbitrarily one chooses that moment of experience from which to look back or from which to look ahead.” What book contains this opening sentence? – The End of the Affair by Graham Greene (1951)
  3. In 1872 Anna Stepanova Pirogova, the spurned mistress of a famous author’s friend, threw herself under the wheels of a train at the railway station in a small Russian town. Her grisly death was the inspiration for what great novel? – Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy
  4. Why did I begin a page called “Readings I’ve Enjoyed”? – Because I want you to read some of the literary treasure that are slowly slipping away.
  5. Who was known informally as “The Abominable Showman”? – David Merrick
  6. What are “little free libraries”? – They are small enclosures in neighorhoods with books that are free to anyone who wants one.
  7. Who wrote, “It has pleased me throughout the long series of Tarzanian exploits to draw comparisons between the manners of men and the manners of beasts and seldom to the advantage of men.” – Edgar Rice Burroughs in “The Tarzan Theme,” Writer’s Digest, June 1932
  8. In December 2013 I wrote about a musical instrument that you play without ever touching it. What is that instrument? – The Theremin
  9. And speaking of music, what is so unusual about the world-class British percussionist Evelyn Glennie? – She has been profoundly deaf since the age of 12
  10. What was USA Today’s 2013 book of the year? – The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
  11. Who said, “If I’m such a legend, why am I so lonely?” – Judy Garland
  12. What set of three books has the subtitle, “Single-Sitting Summaries of All-Time Great Books”? – The Great American Bathroom Book
  13. “This Salinger, he’s a short-story guy.  And he knows how to write about kids.  This book though, it’s too long.  Gets kind of monotonous.  And he should’ve cut out a lot about these jerks and all that crumby school.  They depress me.” What book was the reviewer critiquing? – J. D. Salinger’s Catcher in the Rye
  14. Who wrote The Power of Babel: A Natural History of Language? – Linguist John McWhorter
  15. Who, according the Guiness Book of World Records, is the best selling novelist in the world? – Agatha Christie
  16. “I said once in an interview that every word she writes is a lie including ‘and’ and ‘the.’ ” What writer made that statement, and of whom was she speaking? – Mary McCarthy said that about Lillian Hellman
  17. If you’re a fan of Shakespeare, where might you want to go while visiting Washington D.C.? – The Folger Shakespeare Library
  18. A famous writer asked Patrick French to write a tell-all biography about him. The resulting book was a devastating portrait of that famous writer. Name the subject of French’s book. – V. S. Naipaul
  19. When two German Jews, Hans Augusto Reyersbach and his wife Margaret, fled Nazi-controlled France during World War II, what was one of the few things they took with them? – The manuscript for the book Curious George
  20. “First There Was Pandemonium! Then All Hell Broke Loose!” is the title of a post I published last July. What is the post about? – John Milton’s Paradise Lost and words that he coined


Answers to the May 2015 Quiz

  1. What famous literary detective received an obituary notice in The New York Times in 1975? – Hercule Poirot
  2. Fairy tales as written by the brothers Grimm didn’t have the pleasant endings that Disney gave them. In a post I wrote, “. . . on the way into the church birds peck out one eye of each of the evil stepsisters, and on the way out they peck out the other.” What fairy tale has this grim (pun intended) ending? – Cinderella
  3. The Hardy Boys, Nancy Drew, Tom Swift, and the Bobbsey Twins all have the same father.  Who is he? –  Edward L. Stratemeyer
  4. What well-known writer of crime fiction and other types of novels said, “. . . I don’t think of them as bad guys. I just think of them as, for the most part, normal people who get up in the morning and they wonder what they’re going to have for breakfast, and they sneeze, and they wonder if they should call their mother, and then they rob a bank.  Because that’s the way they are . . . ”? – Elmore Leonard
  5. Name the well-known novelist who wrote this to her husband: “When we were at the Essex House and I had room service and I could buy all my Florence Lustig dresses, I found that I loved you very much.  But now that you’re in the army and getting $56 a month, I feel that my love has waned.” – Jacqueline Susann
  6. In 1983 Vanity Fair magazine began asking notable people to fill out a questionnaire, and each month the magazine still publishes someone’s responses. What is the questionnaire called? – The Proust Questionnaire
  7. The “Plus” in Book Notes Plus allows me to write about almost anything – including music. What famous movie music composer wrote the music for Captain BloodAnthony AdverseThe Adventures of Robin HoodThe Sea Hawk and The Private Lives of Elizabeth and Essex? – Erich Wolfgang Korngold
  8. Here’s what they put on the dust jacket: “This gritty street tale is a breakout book by an author who bears watching.  His wildly imaginative epic offers an edgy, sensual, and utterly unflinching visionary view of life that brilliantly defies categorization.” What do they really mean? – This gritty street tale (Black author from the hood) is a breakout book (Hail Mary pass) by an author who bears watching (as opposed to one you are actually going to want to read).  His wildly imaginative (wrote book high on mescaline) epic (long) offers an edgy (contains no adult voice of reason), sensual (soft porn), and utterly unflinching (has a lot of bad words) visionary (can’t be proven wrong yet) view of life that brilliantly defies categorization (even the author has no clue what he’s turned in).”
  9. A certain ancient library contained priceless works (such as the works of many of the great Greek playwrights) that were lost when it was destroyed. Name the library. – The Library at Alexandria
  10. Psychology Today did an article on a blockbuster erotic romance novel that was published in 2011. Name the novel. – Fifty Shades of Grey
  11. “I do not dedicate my book to any body; for I know nobody worth dedicating it to.  I have no friends, no children, no wife, no home; — no relations, no well-wishers; — nobody to love, and nobody to care for.  To whom shall I; to whom can I dedicate it?  To my Maker!  It is unworthy of him.  To my countrymen?  They are unworthy of me.  For the men of past ages I have very little veneration; for those of the present, not at all. . .” Who wrote this book dedication? – John Neal
  12. Noveln. A short story padded” is one of the delightful definitions in The Devil’s Dictionary. Who wrote the dictionary? (Hint: It wasn’t the devil.) – Ambrose Bierce
  13. In 1927, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle selected his 12 favorite Sherlock Holmes short stories for Strand Magazine. Which story was his favorite? – “The Adventure of the Speckled Band”
  14. Barbara Ann Kipfer wrote a book that might cheer you up when everything seems to be going wrong. What is the name of her book? – 14,000 Things to Be Happy About
  15. What singer was called “The Ghostess with the Mostess”? – Marni Nixon
  16. Name the book (and its author) from which the following quote comes: “The priest rose to take the crucifix; then she stretched forward her neck as one who is athirst, and gluing her lips to the body of the Man-God, she pressed upon it with all her expiring strength the fullest kiss of love that she had ever given.  Then he recited the Misereatur and the Indulgentiam, dipped his right thumb in the oil, and began to give extreme unction.  First upon the eyes, that had so coveted all worldly pomp; then upon the nostrils, that had been greedy of the warm breeze and amorous odors; then upon the mouth, that had uttered lies, that had curled with pride and cried out in lewdness; then upon the hands that had delighted in sensual touches; and finally upon the soles of the feet, so swift of yore, when she was running to satisfy her desires, and that would now walk no more.” – Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert
  17. Betsy Birkey is an artist. What is her specialty? – She turns books into works of art simply by folding their pages in certain ways.
  18. On June 22, 1954 Pauline Parker and her best friend Juliet Hulme asked Parker’s mother, Honorah Rieper, to go for a walk with them through Victoria Park in Christchurch, New Zealand.  As they walked through a wooded area the girls took out a stocking with a brick in it and bludgeoned Rieper to death. The girls served five years in prison for their crime. Juliet Hulme later moved to Great Britain, changed her name, and became a well-known mystery writer. What is her name now? – Anne Perry
  19. The clients of this book editor at Scribner’s included F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ernest Hemingway, and Thomas Wolfe. Name him. – Max Perkins
  20. Caslon, Times Roman, Bodoni, Ariel, and Blackletter are examples of what? – Fonts


Answers to the March 2015 Quiz

  1. Sly Uses (James Joyce) = Ulysses
  2. On Fire Then (Dante) = The Inferno
  3. Jove’s Best (Walter Isaacson) = Steve Jobs
  4. Alarm Sirens (George Eliot) = Silas Marner
  5. Nuke Born (Lauren Hillenbrand) = Unbroken
  6. Wander Apace (Leo Tolstoy) = War and Peace
  7. Slushiest Reason (F. Scott Fitzgerald) = The Sun Also Rises
  8. Frog-Eyed Fishy Fast (E. L. James) = Fifty Shades of Grey
  9. Wow! The Hit Ending (Margaret Mitchell) = Gone with the Wind
  10. The Ignorant Hitler (Paula Hawkins ) = The Girl on the Train
  11. Hang Gem Deranges (Dr. Seuss) = Green Eggs and Ham
  12. Good Rattling White-Hot Threat (Stieg Larsson) = The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo
  13. Daily Saying (William Faulkner) = As I Lay Dying
  14. A Fatal Worm Reels (Ernest Hemingway) = A Farewell to Arms
  15. Frothed Follies (William Golding) = Lord of the Flies
  16. Lustrous Faint Heart (John Green) = The Fault in Our Stars
  17. Her Red-Hot Arch Cry (Anton Chekhov) = The Cherry Orchard
  18. The Bike of Hot (Markus Zusak) = The Book Thief
  19. My! A Mad Brave (Gustave Flaubert) = Madame Bovary
  20. The Woman’s the Fighter (William Shakespeare) = The Taming of the Shrew
  21. Now Witty, Cheerier Eggheads (Zora Neale Hurston) = Their Eyes Were Watching God
  22. Haze of a Patterns (Edgar Rice Burroughs) = Tarzan of the Apes
  23. A Wittiest, Ace Fool (Charles Dickens) = A Tale of Two Cities
  24. Wart Hog Sheep Fart (John Steinbeck) = The Grapes of Wrath
  25. Ace Injured Dripped (Jane Austen) = Pride and Prejudice


Answers to the February 2015 Quiz

  1. Around the World in 80 Days (1956) – Jules Verne – David Niven, Cantinflas
  2. Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (1968) – Ian Fleming – Dick Van Dyke, Sally Anne Howes, Lionel Jeffries
  3. The Birds (1963) – Daphne Du Maurier – Rod Taylor, Tippi Hedren, Suzanne Pleschette
  4. Coal Miner’s Daughter (1980) – Loretta Lynn (autobiography) – Sissy Spacek, Tommy Lee Jones, Levon Helm
  5. Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1958) – Tennessee Williams – Paul Newman, Elizabeth Taylor, Burl Ives, Jack Carson
  6. East of Eden (1955) – John Steinbeck – James Dean, Julie Harris, Raymond Massey
  7. The Graduate (1967) – Charles Webb – Dustin Hoffman, Anne Bancroft, Katharine Ross
  8. A Few Good Men (1992) – Aaron Sorkin (play) – Tom Cruise, Jack Nicholson, Demi Moore
  9. Gigi (1958) – Colette – Leslie Caron, Louis Jourdan, Maurice Chevalier, Hermione Gingold
  10. Jezebel (1938) – Owen Davis (play) – Bette Davis, Henry Fonda, George Brent
  11. Inherit the Wind (1960) – Jerome Lawrence and Robert Edwin Lee (play) – Spencer Tracy, Fredric March, Gene Kelly
  12. Lolita (1962) – Vladimir Nabokov– James Mason, Shelley Winters, Sue Lyon
  13. Deliverance (1972) – James Dickey – Burt Reynolds, Jon Voight, Ned Beatty
  14. One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest (1975) – Ken Kesey – Jack Nicholson, Louise Fletcher
  15. Out of Africa (1985) – Karen Blixen (Isak Dinesen) – Meryl Streep, Robert Redford
  16. The Cider House Rules (1999) – John Irving – Tobey Maguire, Charlize Theron, Michael Caine
  17. Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001) – J.R.R. Tolkien – Elijah Wood, Ian McKellen, Orlando Bloom
  18. No Country for Old Men (2007) – Cormac McCarthy – Tommy Lee Jones, Josh Brolin, Woody Harrelson
  19. Julius Caesar (1953) – William Shakespeare – Marlon Brando, James Mason, John Gielgud
  20. A River Runs Through It (1992) – Norman Maclean – Brad Pitt, Craig Sheffer, Tom Skerritt
  21. The English Patient (1996) – Michael Ondaatje – Ralph Fiennes, Juliette Binoche, Willem Dafoe, Colin Firth
  22. The Lion in Winter (1968) – James Goldman (play) – Peter O’Toole, Katharine Hepburn, Anthony Hopkins
  23. Wait Until Dark (1967) – Frederick Knott (play) – Audrey Hepburn, Alan Arkin, Richard Crenna
  24. The Verdict (1982) – Barry Reed – Paul Newman, Charlotte Rampling, James Mason
  25. Oliver! (1968) – Charles Dickens – Ron Moody, Oliver Reed, Mark Lester


Answers to the January 2015 Quiz

  1. “No animals shall wear clothes,” is one of the commandments in this famous 1945 dystopian novel.  Name it and its author. – Animal Farm by George Orwell
  2. The Gathering Storm is the name of the first of six volumes written by a British statesman about World War II.  Name him. – Winston S. Churchill
  3. What Swedish orphan in children’s literature has the middle names Delicatessa Windowshade Mackrelmint Efraim’s Daughter? – Pippi Longstocking
  4. A certain 1873 novel is about a £20,000 wager made at a London Club?  The wager concerns travel.  Name both the novel and its author. – Around the World in Eighty Days by Jules Verne
  5. In 1972 Pat Conroy wrote a memoir based on a year he spent teaching some poor children on Daufuskie Island, an off-shore South Carolina island.  Name the memoir. – The Water is Wide
  6. Name the 1948 Norman Mailer novel about some Marines who land on the Japanese-held island of Anopopei?  It was based on his experiences during World War II. – The Naked and the Dead
  7. Name the classic 1969 Young Adult novel by William H. Armstrong about a dog, an African-American boy, and the boy’s sharecropper parents.  The novel is named after the dog. – Sounder
  8. Ayn Rand’s now-classic 1957 novel devotes over 50 consecutive pages to her philosophy called objectivism.  Name the novel. – Atlas Shrugged
  9. David Mamet won a Pulitzer Prize in 1984 for this play set in a Chicago real estate office.  Name it. – Glengarry Glen Ross
  10. In Rudyard Kipling’s The Jungle Book there is an animal named Hathi.  What kind of animal is he? – An elephant
  11. Roy Hobbs is an aging baseball marvel in this 1952 debut novel.  In 1984 it was made into a movie that starred Robert Redford.  Name the novel and (for extra credit) it’s author. – The Natural by Bernard Malamud
  12. What New Orleans born author briefly stopped writing supernatural novels in order to pen the historical novel The Feast of All Saints? – Anne Rice
  13. In 1921 Edith Wharton won the first Pulitzer Prize for Fiction ever awarded to a woman for her novel about life among the upper-class in New York City.  Name the novel. – The Age of Innocence
  14. John D. McDonald described the detective he created as a “tattered knight on a spavined [lame due to a disease called spavin] steed.”  Name the detective. – Travis McGee
  15. What 1973 fantasy novel by William Goldman contains characters named Buttercup, Wesley, Fezzik, and Inigo Montoya? – The Princess Bride
  16. By what name do Jem and Scout address their father in Harper Lee’s classic 1960 novel To Kill a Mockingbird? – Atticus
  17. In what country does the title character of Michael Ondaatje’s 1992 novel The English Patient spend the last days of his life? – Italy
  18. Name two James Michener books that were named after nations. – Mexico and Poland
  19. Name the 29 year old contemporary of Shakespeare who was stabbed to death during a dispute over a bill at a tavern.  Some people believe that he actually lived, and secretly penned some or all of Shakespeare’s plays. – Christopher Marlowe
  20. Psychologist Robert Buterworth has referred to this best-selling self-help author and TV personality as “like your mama, without hair.”  Who is he? – Dr. Phil


Answers to the November 2014 Quiz

  1. Fattoria (Italian) – Farm
  2. Magazzino (Italian) – Warehouse
  3. Morbido (Italian) – Soft
  4. Parente (Italian) – Relative (the Italian word for “parents” is “genitori.”)
  5. Patente (Italian) – License
  6. Rumore (Italian) – Sound, noise
  7. Absolvieren (German) – To complete something such as a course or examination
  8. Aktion (German) – Campaign
  9. Also (German) – Thus, therefore
  10. Aktuell (German) – Current, latest
  11. Ambulanz (German) – Outpatient department
  12. Blenden (German) – To dazzle, to fool
  13. Etikett  (German) – Label
  14. Fade (German) – Boring
  15. Fotograf (German) – Photographer
  16. Genial (German) – Brilliant
  17. Gift (German) – Poison
  18. Gymnasium (German) – High school
  19. Herd (German) – Stove
  20. Konsequent (German) – Consistent, logical
  21. List (German) – Cunning
  22. Artificial (English) – Having artistic and technical skill
  23. Awful (English) – Commanding awe, full of awe
  24. Balderdash (English) – A frothy liquid
  25. Brothel (English) – A vulgar or coarse person
  26. Bully (English) – Wonderful
  27. Buxom (English) – Meek
  28. Cute (English) – Keenly perceptive, short version of “acute”
  29. Defecate (English) – To purify
  30. Fantastic (English) – Existing only in one’s imagination
  31. Husband (English) – House owner
  32. Matrix (English) – A place where something is developed, womb, source
  33. Myriad (English) – 10,000
  34. Nervous (English) – Sinewy and vigorous
  35. Nice (English) – Ignorant


Answers to the October 2014 Quiz

  1. Name the 1930s movie monster that makes his last stand atop the Empire State Building. – King Kong
  2. Name the French National Anthem. – “The Marseillaise” (It was written during the French Revolution.)
  3. What is the nickname of the statuette that is presented to winners at the Academy Awards. – Oscar
  4. Name the well-known actress who starred in numerous musical movies with Fred Astaire. – Ginger Rogers
  5. This Greek statue is one of the most loved possessions of the Louvre though her arms have long been broken off.  Name it. – The Venus de Milo
  6. What three word message (in Latin) did Julius Caesar send to the Roman senate after he successfully conquered some lands in Asia? – “I came, I saw, I conquered (“veni, vidi, vici”)
  7. Name the cruel and destructive people who sacked Rome in the fifth century.  We remember them in an –ism word. – Vandals
  8. What was the name of the first permanent English settlement in North America? – Jamestown (1607)
  9. Draco, a rule of ancient Athens had some harsh laws.  We remember him through a commonly used English word.  What is it? – Draconian
  10. These laws prohibit businesses from opening on Sundays or from selling certain items such as liquor.  What are the laws called? – Blue Laws
  11. An unexpected winner is often said to be one of these.  What is the term? – Dark Horse
  12. Franklin Delano Roosevelt used these homey talks over the radio to reassure the people of the United States during the Great Depression.  What were the talks commonly called? – Fireside Chats
  13. Theodore Roosevelt was largely responsible for the completion of this vital waterway in the Americas.  What is it called? – The Panama Canal
  14. “The sum of attitudes, customs, and beliefs that distinguishes one group of people from another.”  What is it? – Culture
  15. These counterculture folks were most prominent in the United States during the 1960s.  What were they called? – Hippies
  16. What do we call excessive self-love and self-absorption? – Narcissism
  17. This publication by Benjamin Franklin offered proverbial wisdom, and humor.  Name it. – Poor Richard’s Almanac
  18. Name the two characters in Lewis Carroll’s Through the Looking-Glass who has identical speech, attitude and appearance. – Tweedledee and Tweedledum
  19. This famous play by Tennessee Williams takes place in New Orleans.  Name it. – A Streetcar Named Desire
  20. When Gulliver went to the land of the Houyhnhnms (intelligent horses) he encounter some coarse, filthy brutes who were called what? – Yahoos


Answers to the August 2014 Quiz

  1. She first appeared on stage in Paris in 1875, and has been a staple ever since.  She worked in a cigarette factory in Seville, and was quite liberated for her time. – Carmen from Georges Bizet’s opera of the same name.
  2. He is a professor of archaeology, but also an adventurer who carries a whip, and can’t seem to stay out of trouble.  And we thank him for that. – Henry “Indiana” Jones
  3. She is the dipsy red-head who is always getting into some absurd comic situation.  Her Cuban husband scolds her, but how can he (or we) resist her? – Lucy Ricardo
  4. He and his band of merry men steal from the rich, and give to the poor. – Robin Hood
  5. He fights valiantly against the Trojans, but he has a fatal flaw that ultimately costs him his life. – Achilles
  6. Her name has appeared on boxes of cake mix and numerous other products for many years.  She has even written cook books. – Betty Crocker
  7. In this New Testament story a man lies beaten and robbed on the side of the road, and everyone passes by without helping him – everyone, that is, except for this one man. – The Good Samaritan
  8. “Bah, humbug!” – Ebenezer Scrooge
  9. Back when cigarette advertisements were allowed on TV, this man rode his horse in the west, and contentedly smoked his cigarette. – The Marlboro Man
  10. She is a “gutter-snipe” who can’t speak English correctly.  He is a noted professor of phonetics. – Eliza Doolittle and Henry Higgins
  11. They are Shakespeare’s “star crossed lovers.” – Romeo and Juliet
  12. She follows the yellow brick road to a very strange land. – Dorothy Gale
  13. He is an African-American physician, husband and father in one of the most beloved comedy series that ever aired on TV.  Be sure to give his full first name. – Heathcliff “Cliff” Huxtable
  14. Actress Lynda Carter wrote the Time piece about this woman with magical powers. – Wonder Woman
  15. He didn’t mean to do it, but he killed his father and married his mother. – Oedipus
  16. She makes one mistake, and must wear the letter “A” for the rest of her life. – Hester Prynne
  17. She is the girl with the dragon tattoo. – Lizbeth Salander
  18. He is a World War II hero who takes over the family business after his father dies. – Michael Corleone
  19. Everything he touched turned to gold. – King Midas
  20. He played God, and created a monster. – Dr. Victor Frankenstein


Answers to the July 2014 Words At Play Quiz

  1. Attendre (French) – To wait for
  2. Comment (French) – How
  3. Figure (French) – Face
  4. Librairie (French) – Bookstore
  5. Occasion (French) – Opportunity
  6. Pain (French) – Bread
  7. Rester (French) – To remain
  8. Sale (French) – Dirty
  9. Bizarro (Spanish) – Brave
  10. Campo (Spanish) – Field, Countryside
  11. Compromiso (Spanish) – Promise, obligation
  12. Contestar (Spanish) – To answer
  13. Disgusto (Spanish) – Displeasure, misfortune
  14. Éxito (Spanish) – Success, hit (as in someone’s hit record)
  15. Fábrica (Spanish) – Factory
  16. Ganga (Spanish) – Bargain
  17. Molestar (Spanish) – To bother, to annoy
  18. Ropa (Spanish) – Clothing
  19. Sopa (Spanish) – Soup
  20. Camera (Italian) – Room
  21. Confetti (Italian) – Sugared almond
  22. Confrontare (Italian) – To compare
  23. Crema (Italian) – Custard
  24. Crudo (Italian) – Raw
  25. Educato (Italian) – Polite


Answers to the June 2014 Quiz

The name on the left is that of a character in a series.  The author’s name and the name of the series (if different from the main character’s name appear to the right of the dash.

  1. Harry Potter – J.K. Rowling
  2. Miss Marple – Agatha Christie
  3. Hercule Poirot – Agatha Christie
  4. Brother Cadfael – “Ellis Peters” (Edith Pargeter)
  5. Percy Jackson – Rick Riordan (Percy Jackson & the Olympians Series)
  6. Tarzan – Edgar Rice Burroughs
  7. James Bond – Ian Fleming
  8. George Smiley – John Le Carré
  9. Professor George Edward Challenger – Edgar Rice Burroughs
  10. Bertie Wooster – P. G. Wodehouse (The Jeeves Series)
  11. Katniss Everdeen – Suzanne Collins (The Hunger Games Series)
  12. Bella Swan – Stephenie Meyer (The Twilight Series)
  13. Inspector Adam Dalgliesh – P. D. James
  14. Christian Grey – E. L. James (The Fifty Shades Trilogy)
  15. Lisbeth Salander – Stieg Larsson (The Millennium Trilogy)
  16. Sookie Stackhouse – Charlaine Harris
  17. Lyra Belacqua – Philip Pullman (His Dark Materials Series)
  18. Nancy Drew – “Carolyn Keene” (pseudonym for various authors of the Nancy Drew series)
  19. Frank and Joe Hardy – “Franklin W. Dixon” (pseudonym for various authors of the Hardy Boys Series)
  20. Aslan – C. S. Lewis (The Chronicles of Narnia)
  21. Dave Robicheaux – James Lee Burke
  22. Father Tim – Jan Karon (The Mitford Years)
  23. John Carter – Edgar Rice Burroughs (The John Carter of Mars Series)
  24. Peter Rabbit – Beatrix Potter
  25. Amelia Bedilia – Peggy Parish
  26. C. Auguste Dupin – Edgar Allan Poe
  27. Lord Peter Wimsey – Dorothy L. Sayers
  28. Perry Mason – Erle Stanley Gardner
  29. Laura Ingalls – Laura Ingalls Wilder (The Little House Series)
  30. Greg Heffley – Jeff Kinney (The Diary of a Wimpy Kid Series)
  31. Curious George – H. A. and Margret Rey
  32. Hari Seldon – Isaac Asimov (The Foundation Trilogy)
  33. Arthur Dent – Douglas Adams (The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy Series)
  34. Mma Precious Ramotswe – Alexander McCall Smith (The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency Series)
  35. Lestat de Lioncourt – Anne Rice (The Vampire Chronicles)
  36. Alex Rider – Anthony Horowitz
  37. Daenerys Targaryen – George R. R. Martin (The A Song of Ice and Fire Series)
  38. Andrew “Ender” Wiggins – Orson Scott Card (The Ender’s Game Series)
  39. Dorothy Gale – L. Frank Baum (The Wizard of Oz Series)
  40. Liir – Gregory Maguire (The Wicked Years Series)
  41. Archie Goodwin – Rex Stout (The Nero Wolf Series)
  42. Philip Marlowe – Raymond Chandler
  43. Sigfried and Tristan Farnon – “James Herriot” (pseudonym for James Alfred Wight) (The All Creatures Great and Small Series)
  44. Father Brown – G. K. Chesterton
  45. Robert Langdon – Dan Brown
  46. Charlie Chan – Earl Derr Biggers
  47. Dr. Lancelot Priestley – “John Rhode” (pseudonym for John Street)
  48. Albert Campion – Margery Louise Allingham
  49. Roderick Alleyn – Ngaio Marsh
  50. Philo Vance – “S. S. Van Dine” (pseudonym of Willard Huntington Wright)


Answers to the May 2014 Quiz

  1. Six Days of the Condor by James Grady became Three Days of the Condor
  2. Alias Madame Doubtfire by Anne Fine became Mrs. Doubtfire
  3. Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep by Philip K. Dick became Blade Runner
  4. Lost Moon by Jim Lovell and Jeffrey Kluger became Apollo 13
  5. Wiseguy: Life in a Mafia Family by Nicholas Pileggi became Goodfellas
  6. First Blood by David Morrell became Rambo: First Blood
  7. Nothing Lasts Forever by Roderick Thorp became Die Hard
  8. 58 Minutes by Walter Wager became Die Hard 2
  9. Shoeless Joe by W. P. Kinsella became Field of Dreams
  10. The Sheep-Pig by Dick King-Smith became Babe
  11. Who Censored Roger Rabbit by Gary K. Wolf became Who Framed Roger Rabbit
  12. Supertoys Last All Summer Long by Brian Aldiss became Artificial Intelligence: AI
  13. The Greatest Gift by Philip Van Doren Stern became It’s a Wonderful Life
  14. Push by Sapphire became Precious
  15. A Prayer for Owen Meany by John Irving became Simon Birch
  16. The Body by Stephen King became Stand By Me
  17. We Can Remember It for You Wholesale by Philip K. Dick became Total Recall
  18. The Midwich Cuckoos by John Wyndham became Village of the Damned
  19. Ratman’s Notebooks by Stephen Gilbert became Willard
  20. Anna and the King of Siam by Margaret Landon became The King and I
  21. Liliom by Ferenc Molnar became Carousel
  22. Red Dragon by Thomas Harris became Manhunter
  23. Q & A by Vikas Swarup became Slumdog Millionaire
  24. Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH by Robert C. O’Brien became The Secret of NIMH
  25. Green Grow the Lilacs by Lynn Riggs became Oklahoma!
  26. The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson became The Haunting
  27. Point of Impact by Stephen Hunter became Shooter
  28. Queen Bees and Wannabes by Rosaling Wiseman became Mean Girls
  29. Rum Punch by Elmore Leonard became Jackie Brown
  30. I Am Legend by Richard Matheson became The Omega Man


Answers to the March 2014 Quiz

  1. William Shakespeare is primarily remembered as a writer, but he also worked in another profession.  Name his other profession. – He was an actor.
  2. Give the first names of the three Brontë sisters. – Charlotte, Emily and Anne
  3. How many circle of Hell are there in Dante’s Inferno? – Nine
  4. Who is the son of the town drunkard in Mark Twain’s The Adventures of Tom Sawyer? – Huckleberry Finn
  5. Name John Grisham’s first novel. – A Time to Kill
  6. When F. Scott Fitzgerald died in 1940 he left an unfinished novel.  What is the name of the novel? – The Last Tycoon
  7. Where is Yoknapatawpha County located? – It is a fictional Mississippi county in the novels of William Faulkner.
  8. In what state would you find Sleepy Hollow the town that was immortalized by Washington Irving? – New York
  9. What is the name of the current bestseller written by Donna Tartt? – The Goldfinch
  10. A famous American novelist drove an ambulance during WW I, and used his experiences as the basis for the novel A Farewell to Arms.  What is his name? – Ernest Hemingway
  11. What nonfiction book was the basis for the movie that recently won the Best Picture Oscar? – Twelve Years a Slave
  12. On which island did writer Ian Fleming live while he wrote his famous James Bond novels? – Jamaica
  13. Novelist Isabel Allende is most associated with Chile, but she was not born there.  In which country was Allende born? – Peru
  14. Poet Ricardo Neftrall Reyes Basoalto was born in Chile.  What was his pen name? – Pablo Neruda
  15. Name the series of novels by George R. R. Martin that form the basis for a popular HBO series. – A Game of Thrones
  16. Langston Hughes was a part of what major literary and cultural movement in New York City during the 1920s? – The Harlem Renaissance
  17. Where was novelist Juno Diaz born? – The Dominican Republic
  18. What was the title of the first Harry Potter novel? – In Great Britain it was titled Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone.  In the United States the title was changed to Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone.
  19. Gifts, quality time, words of affirmation, acts of service, and physical touch are the important elements in what current bestseller by what author? – The 5 Love Languages by Gary Chapman.
  20. Zora Neal Hurston died in obscurity and was almost forgotten, but has now become very popular.  Name her best know novel. – Their Eyes Were Watching God
  21. Name the author of the stories that feature a boy named Mowgli who is raised by wolves? – Rudyard Kipling
  22. Who wrote the novel Jurasic Park? – Michael Crichton
  23. Who created detective Sam Spade? – Dashiell Hammett
  24. With whom did Hammett have a long-lasting affair? – Author Lillian Hellman
  25. What is Japanese poet Matsuo Basho’s claim to fame? – He developed haiku.


Answers to the February 2014 Quiz

  1. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
  2. The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C. S. Lewis
  3. The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck
  4. Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut
  5. One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest by Ken Kesey
  6. The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway
  7. Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf
  8. The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner
  9. Native Son by Richard Wright
  10. Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe
  11. Are You There God?  It’s Me, Margaret by Judy Blume
  12. On the Road by Jack Kerouac
  13. The Big Sleep by Raymond Chandler
  14. The French Lieutenant’s Woman by John Fowles
  15. The Spy Who Came in from the Cold by John le Carré
  16. Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace
  17. Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neal Hurston
  18. Naked Lunch by William S. Burroughs
  19. White Noise by Don DeLillo
  20. Gravity’s Rainbow by Thomas Pynchon
  21. Rabbit Run by John Updike
  22. The Moviegoer by Walker Percy
  23. Deliverance by James Dickey
  24. Herzog by Saul Bellow
  25. Falconer by John Cheever
  26. Dog Soldiers by Robert Stone
  27. The Assistant by Bernard Malamud
  28. The Sheltering Sky by Paul Bowles
  29. The Confessions of Nat Turner by William Styron
  30. The Golden Notebook by Doris Lessing
  31. The Power and the Glory by Graham Greene
  32. The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie by Muriel Spark
  33. Wide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys
  34. The Corrections by Jonathan Franzen
  35. American Pastoral by Philip Roth

You can find the entire list at Goodreads along with readers’ comments.


Answers to the January 2014 Quiz

  1. The first Sherlock Holmes story by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and a novel by Nathaniel Hawthorne – A Study in Scarlet and (The) Scarlet Letter
  2. A novel by Margaret Mitchell and a novel by Kenneth Grahame – Gone with the Wind and (The) Wind in the Willows
  3. A novel by John Grisham and a novel by Harper Lee – A Time to Kill and (To) Kill a Mockingbird
  4. A novel by Gillian Flynn and the first in a trilogy of novels by Stieg Larsson – Gone Girl and (The) Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
  5. A nonfiction book by Stephen Ambrose and a novel by Fyodor Dostoevsky – Band of Brothers and (The) Brothers Karamazov
  6. A novel by Richard Wright and a novel by Gregory Maguire – Native Son and Son of a Witch
  7. A novel by F. Scott Fitzgerald and an epic poem by John Milton – This Side of Paradise and Paradise Lost
  8. A novel by Louisa May Alcott and a novel by D. H. Lawrence – Little Women and Women in Love
  9. A novella by Ernest Hemingway and a nonfiction book by Rachel Carson – The Old Man and the Sea and (The) Sea Around Us
  10. A novel by Jack Kerouac and a nonfiction book by F. A. Hayek – On the Road and (The) Road to Serfdom
  11. A novel by John Fowles and a novel by Wilkie Collins – The French Lieutenant’s Woman and (The) Woman in White
  12. A novel by Salman Rushdie and a play by Mark Medoff – Midnight’s Children and Children of a Lesser God
  13. A novel by Anthony Burgess and a nonfiction book by Piper Kernan – A Clockwork Orange and Orange is the New Black
  14. A novel by Stephenie Meyer and a novel by Elie Wiesel – Breaking Dawn and Dawn
  15. A novel by Markus Zusak and a novel by Clive Cussler and Justin Scott – The Book Thief and (The) Thief
  16. A novel by Antoine de Saint-Exupery and a novel by Pat Conroy – The Little Prince and (The) Prince of Tides
  17. A novel by Penelope Lively (I couldn’t resist!) and a novel by Frederick Forsyth – Judgment Day and (The) Day of the Jackal
  18. A novel by Henry Miller and a novel by Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn – Tropic of Cancer and Cancer Ward
  19. A novel by Erich Segal and a novel by David Wroblewski – Love Story and The Story of Edgar Sawtelle
  20. A novel by Neil White and a short story by Bret Harte – In The Sanctuary of Outcasts and “(The) Outcasts of Poker Flat
  21. A novel by Mitch Albom and a nonfiction book by Todd Burpo and Lynn Vincent – The First Phone Call from Heaven and Heaven Is for Real
  22. A nonfiction book by Sigmund Freud and an autobiography by Barack Obama –The Interpretation of Dreams and Dreams from My Father
  23. A self-help book by Dale Carnegie and a novel by Geraldine Brooks – How to Win Friends and Influence People and People of the Book
  24. A novel by Ernest J. Gaines and a nonfiction book by John Gray – A Gathering of Old Men and Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus
  25. A children’s book by Margaret Wise Brown and a novel by W. Somerset Maugham – Goodnight Moon and (The) Moon and Sixpence


Answers to the December 2013 Quiz

  1. Fifty Shades of Grey was written by P. D. James.  (False. It was written by E. L. James)
  2. The Catcher in the Rye was written by J. D. Salinger.  (True.)
  3. The Odyssey was written by Virgil.  (False.  It was written by Homer.  Virgil wrote the epic poem Aeneid.)
  4. Jane Eyre was written by Currer Bell.  (Both true and false.  Currer Bell was a pen name used by Charlotte Brontë so that the author of Jane Eyre would seem to be a man.)
  5. “George Orwell” was a pen name used by Eric Arthur Blair.  (True.)
  6. Ian Fleming wrote Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. (True.  He wrote it for his son, Casper.)
  7. Utopia was written in English by Thomas More. (False.  More, an Englishman, wrote it, but he wrote it in Latin.  So we have to read it in translation.)
  8. Ralph Ellison wrote The Invisible Man. (False.  Ellison wrote Invisible Man.  H. G. Wells wrote the science fiction novel The Invisible Man.)
  9. The musical My Fair Lady was written by George Bernard Shaw.  (False.  The musical was written by Alan Jay Lerner and Frederick Loewe, but it was based on Shaw’s play Pygmalion.)
  10. Adam Dalgliesh is a character created by British mystery writer P. D. James.  (True.)
  11. Huck helps Tom, a slave, escape in (The) Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. (False.  The slave’s name is Jim.  You’re thinking of Tom Sawyer.)
  12. “Boz” was an early pen name used by Charles Dickens. (True.)
  13. The story for 101 Dalmatians was created by Walt Disney.  (False.  The book 101 Dalmatians was written by Dodie Smith in 1956.  Disney used it as the basis for a 1961 movie.)
  14. The full title of Jonathan Swift’s book about the adventures of Lemuel Gulliver is Travels into Several Remote Nations of the World. In Four Parts. By Lemuel Gulliver, First a Surgeon, and then a Captain of Several Ships.  (True.)
  15. Romance novelist Danielle Steel has been married and divorced five times. (True.)
  16. The character “Dill” in To Kill a Mockingbird is based on Truman Capote. (True.  Capote lived next to Harper Lee for a while when they were children.)
  17. Aldous Huxley got the name for his novel Brave New World from a play by William Shakespeare. (True.  The play is The Tempest in which Miranda on seeing Alonso for the first time says, “O brave new world that has such people in’t!”)
  18. Though he was a celebrated writer, Ernest Hemingway never won a Nobel or Pulitzer Prize.  (False.  He won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 1953 and the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1954.)
  19. John Kennedy Toole’s novel A Confederacy of Dunces was highly sought after by book publishers.  (False.  The novel was turned down by several publishers, and was finally published by LSU Press in 1980 only after author Walker Percy read and championed the novel.  It won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 1981 and is now considered a classic.  Toole, however, didn’t live to see the success of his masterpiece.  Considering himself a failure, he committed suicide in 1969 at the age of 31.)
  20. In Charles Dickens’ Bleak House a man suddenly erupts into flames and dies – a case of spontaneous combustion. (True.)
  21. Moby Dick was inspired by an actual incident in which a whale rammed and sank a whaling ship. (True)
  22. The Hobbit was written by C. S. Lewis. (False.  The Hobbit was written by J.R.R. Tolkien.  Tolkien and Lewis were friends.)
  23. Stieg Larsson died after completing his “Millennium” series.  (False.  He intended to write ten books in the series, but died after completing only three.)
  24. Edgar Rice Burroughs, creator of Tarzan, also wrote a number of science fantasy books including A Princess of Mars.  (True.  Walt Disney Pictures filmed and released A Princess of Mars as the movie John Carter in 2012.  It bombed in the United States, but set box office records in Russia.)
  25. Winston Churchill wrote a number of bestselling novels in the early part of the 20th century.  (Both True and False.  No, not that Churchill; the Winston Churchill from Saint Louis, Missouri wrote the novels.  He and the more famous Winston Churchill met and exchanged letters occasionally, and agreed that the British statesman and author would include his middle initial (S for Spencer) to distinguish himself from the American novelist.)


Answers to the November 2013 Quiz

  1. This 19th century French sci-fi writer wrote books about men who traveled beneath the earth, beneath the sea, and even to the moon.  He influenced such writers as H. G. Wells, Ray Bradbury, and Arthur C. Clark. – Jules Verne (10,201 points, #519)
  2. She is possibly the best known victim of the holocaust.  She lived in Amsterdam and is known for the diary she kept while she and her family were hiding from the Nazis. She died in the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp the year WW II ended. – Anne Frank (10,832 points, #481)
  3. He was the son of former slaves.  He managed to get a good education and to found a black university in Alabama that is very well known.  He and W. E. B. Dubois were at odds concerning how black men and women should act in order to progress in a white dominated society. – Booker T. Washington (11,327 points, #458)
  4. She was a prominent British novelist during the first half of the 20th century, a feminist, and a prominent member of the Bloomsbury group.  She wrote the novel Mrs. Dalloway, and gave a series of lectures which became a nonfiction book called A Room of One’s Own.  She battled mental illness through much of her life, and finally, in despair, filled her pockets with rocks, and drowned herself in a river. – Virginia Woolf (11,529 points, #441)
  5. He is often called the father of the essay.  In life he was a wealthy Frenchman who had thoughts about many, many things – including friendship, how to live, and even cannibals – and wrote about them over many years.  He would often go back to previously completed essays and revise them to reflect his changing thoughts. – Michel De Montaigne (11,676 points, #432)
  6. Her 1962 book, Silent Spring, had a tremendous impact on how we think about the chemicals we use to control pests – both plants and animals – and on the entire field of environmental science.  She also wrote a popular book entitled The Sea Around Us. – Rachel Carson (12,844 points, #377)
  7. He created the first English language translation of the Bible, and was an early critic of certain teachings and practices of the Catholic Church.  He died from a stroke in 1384.  The Council of Constance (1415) declared him a heretic and banned his writings.  His body was exhumed and destroyed. – John Wycliffe (13,645 points, #337)
  8. He is remembered for his often macabre short stories, and for his poems.  He is also credited with creating a Sherlock Holmes-like detective before Sherlock Holmes ever existed.  Many of his short stories are staples of anthologies, and most people have read his poem about a certain black bird. – Edgar Allan Poe (14,685, #279)
  9. This Prague-born author’s last name with –esque added to it denotes something that is surreal, complex or nightmarish.  His most famous short story is about a man who wakes one morning to find that he has turned into a giant bug.  He asked a friend to burn his unpublished works when he died, but – lucky for us – his friend decided not to carry out the authors wishes. – Franz Kafka (15,755 points, #233)
  10. He invented dynamite only to see it used in war instead of for peaceful purposes that would benefit mankind.  When his brother died, newspapers mistakenly reported that he, not his brother, had died.  He was stunned by the negative things that people said about him before the erroneous obituary was corrected.  He used part of his fortune to set up a number of prestigious prizes including one in literature. – Alfred Nobel (16,250 points, #217)
  11. This Cambridge don is best known for his theories – and published works – in the field of economics.  One of his theories is that government should increase spending during a time of recession in order to counter the loss of activity in the private sector. – John Maynard Keynes (16,789 points, #201)
  12. Most people would agree that any alteration in the Western Canon that would add women writers would absolutely have to include this British novelist.  Her best known novel, first published 200 years ago this year, has been filmed for television and the movies well over a dozen times. – Jane Austen (17,921 points, #168)
  13. Faust (especially part 1) is considered one of the greatest of literary works, and this brilliant German writer and thinker wrote it.  He led a long productive life, and was in love with love up until the very moment of his death at age 82. – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (19,162 points, #131)
  14. This great British thinker was an early proponent of using a scientific method in order to properly investigate the world around us.  He proposed the use of inductive reasoning – in which we go from the specific to the general – in all investigations.  His two principal works were The Advancement of Learning and Novum Organum (which he never completed).  While investigating the use of snow to preserve meat he became chilled, and died. – Francis Bacon (20,273 points, #84)
  15. He was a crusader for social reform in Great Britain, but he made his points through the novels he wrote, not through blistering speeches.  He has created some of the most memorable characters in English literature, and is probably regarded second only to his fellow countryman William Shakespeare in the hearts of those who love literature. – Charles Dickens (20,666 points, #70)
  16. We remember him as one of the founding fathers, but that was only one of this Renaissance man’s fields of interest.  He was a scientist, an able diplomat, a printer, and an author among other things.  It was he who fine-tuned Thomas Jefferson’s draft of the Declaration of Independence, wrote an almanac which contained sayings that we still use, and wrote a brief autobiography. – Benjamin Franklin (20,988 points, #54)
  17. The mother of Mary Shelley (author of Frankenstein) this woman is remembered principally as an early fighter in the battle for women’s rights.  In 1792, long before the women’s suffrage movement began, she wrote a book entitled Vindication of the Rights of Women which encouraged women to resist domination by men. – Mary Wollstonecraft (21,114 points, #45)
  18. This Russian is one of the most famous writers who ever lived.  He was also a religious fanatic, and firmly believed that the Russian peasants should be treated better.  His complicated, contradictory life makes one wonder how he was able to see so clearly into the psyches of the characters he wrote about. – Leo Tolstoy (21,239, #34)
  19. He was a native of Florence, Italy, and when he wrote his masterpiece – a magnificent three part poem about a man’s journey through Hell, Purgatory, and Paradise – he wrote it in his native dialect rather than in Latin because he was writing it for the common people, not for scholars.  Modern Italian is based on that dialect. – Dante Alighieri (21,280 points, #30)
  20. This man had great influence in two radically different fields: mathematics and philosophy.  In mathematics his major contribution was the development of the Cartesian coordinates, a system for graphing equations.  In philosophy his major work was his Meditations in which he declares, “I think, therefore I am.” – René Decartes (21,348 points, #25)
  21. No one before him ever explored the human mind the way this man did.  He is the father of modern day psychology and psychiatry.  He had many disciples who broke away from his thinking, and developed their own theories.  However, it can be argued that they might not have given the human psyche so much thought if their mentor had never existed.  He wrote many works including The Interpretation of Dreams and Civilization and Its Discontents. – Sigmund Freud (21,550, #15)
  22. At one time half the world was ruled by people who followed the philosophy of this German philosopher and champion of the common man.  Though we may disagree with his beliefs, without a doubt he is one of the most influential people who ever lived. – Karl Marx (21,566 points, #14)
  23. When it comes to theology, there are few men who have had as much influence as this man whose major work, Summa Theologica (written between 1265 and 1274), harmonized the thoughts of the great philosophers with the teachings of the Catholic Church.  He remains the Church’s most important philosopher. – Thomas Aquinas (21,685 points, #8)
  24. This German priest developed grave doubts about some of the Catholic Church’s teaching concerning indulgences, the validity of some of the sacraments, and the role of the Church in a nation’s politics.  His actions set off a chain of events that would be known as the Protestant Reformation. – Martin Luther (21,753 points, #3)
  25. Only because of this goldsmith’s invention did the ideas of the people in this quiz receive wide dissemination.  To the authors of 1,000 Years, 1,000People, the invention of movable type and the printing press is the most important achievement of the last 1,000 years, and its inventor deserves the prize.  And what book lover would dare to disagree? – Johannes Gutenberg (21,768 points, #1)

_ _ _

Ten Who Almost Made It, but Didn’t

  • Lady Godiva
  • Amerigo Vespucci
  • Pocahontas
  • Pyotr Ilich Tchaikovsky
  • Ronald Reagan
  • John Kennedy
  • Oprah Winfrey
  • William Gates
  • Carl Ripken, Jr.
  • Diana, Princess of Wales


Answers to the October 2013 Quiz

Here are the answers to the October 2013 Quiz of the Month which is based on the book 1,000 Years, 1,000 People: Ranking the Men and Women Who Shaped the Millennium.

  1. This writer of children’s books is best known for Green Eggs and Ham. – Theodore Seuss Geisel aka Dr. Seuss (1,028 points, #998)
  2. This Lebanese Christian’s somewhat mystical writings are still popular though he died in 1931.  His best known book is The Prophet. – Kahlil Gibran (1,999 points, #950)
  3. Speaking of mysticism, this Catholic woman – born to Castilian aristocracy – became an ascetic and founded a new order of nuns.  Her influence throughout Europe was very important during the Counter-Reformation.  She is the author of Life and the Way of Perfection. – Teresa of Ávila (2,038 points, #949)
  4.  A German veteran of WW I wrote a book that detailed the horrors of war.  He was forced to flee Germany, and his books were banned and burned during Hitler’s reign. – Erich Maria Remarque (2,927 points, #908)
  5. This 19th century French writer’s genre was “swaggering romantic novels” in the words of the authors.  A few of his 400 or so books – some written by ghostwriters – are still popular.  His son was also a well-known novelist, but didn’t make the list. – Alexander Dumas père (3,289 points, #874)
  6. After working in entomology for 25 years, he became a researcher in the field of human sexuality.  He wrote two best-sellers based on his research (which included filming group sexual encounters among his staff and their spouses). – Alfred Kinsey (3,569 points, #849)
  7. He was a journalist, poet, novelist, librettist and more.  He is best known as one of the leading figures of the Harlem Renaissance during the 1920s.  The title of Lorraine Hansberry’s famous play, A Raisin in the Sun, is taken from one of his poems. – Langston Hughes (3,649 points, #844)
  8. Her still-popular book, Etiquette, published in 1922, tells us how to act in any social situation.  She describes how we should handle ourselves during a presidential visit and warns young ladies to avoid cabarets.  Her book, which has sold over a million copies, was the bible of officer training schools during WW II. – Emily Post (5,403 points, #779)
  9. You may know him best as a perennial presidential candidate, but he will be remembered as a man who fought to correct the wrongs of industry.  His 1965 exposé Unsafe at Any Speed detailed the auto industry’s lack of interest in producing safe cars, and brought about the demise of the Chevrolet Corvair four years later. – Ralph Nader (5,988 points, #744)
  10. He and fellow Frenchman Émile Gagnan invented scuba (self-contained underwater breathing apparatus) diving.  His exploits and his research ship, Calypso, were mainstays of public TV for many years.  He also wrote numerous books about the sea, and our need to preserve it and its treasures. – Jacques Cousteau (7,116 points, #685)
  11. “I have seen so little of the world,” he said, “that I have nothing but thin air to concoct my stories of.”  Yet this man, born into a sin-haunted, guilt-dominated Puritan environment, wrote a number of novels that are still popular.  His best known novel is the story of a sinner named Hester Prynne. – Nathaniel Hawthorne  (7,298 points, #675)
  12. She was Italy’s first female doctor, but she is best known for the unconventional teaching methods she used to educate children in the slums of Rome.  Though her ideas are not used today in many public schools, there are numerous private schools throughout the U.S. that employ her teaching ideas.  Many of her books concerning teaching children are still in print. – Maria Montessori (7,740 points, #650)
  13. This French aristocrat came to America to study our prison system, and ended up writing a two-volume composition on the workings of our political system.  He predicted that our form of democracy would dominate Europe one day. – Alexis de Tocqueville (8,472 points, #611)
  14. Some say that this Argentinean poet, essayist, short story writer, and translator was the most influential Latin American writer of the twentieth century.  Many of his short stories have to do with fantasy and magical realism.  “The Garden of Forking Paths” is one of his best known short stories. – Jorge Luis Borges (10,814 points, #483)
  15. This British aristocrat’s works are the most read in the world after the Bible and the works of William Shakespeare.  More than 400 million of her detective novels have been sold over the years.  As I reported in a recent post, her most famous detective is about to make a comeback. – Agatha Christie (12,781 points, #382)
  16. Erasmus referred to him as “a man for all seasons” because his beliefs never changed with the political weather.  Indeed, his refusal to acknowledge Henry VIII’s religious supremacy over that of the Catholic Church lead to his beheading and eventual sainthood in the Catholic Church.  He wrote a well-known book which would have the English title Nowhere.  However, he wrote it in Latin, so if you want to read it in the author’s original English, you’ll have to find a Latin to English translation. – Thomas More (13,477 points, #345)
  17. His two best known novels – two of the earliest ever written in the English language – could hardly be more different.  The first, published in 1719, was made into a very popular Walt Disney adventure movie while the other, published in 1722, has been banned or challenged at times mostly because of its strong sexual content – its title character engages in prostitution and incest. – Daniel Defoe (16,849 points, #197)
  18. He was a famous Russian short story writer and playwright.  His works don’t have strong plots, so he was often criticized – even by other writers.  “Where do your stories take you?” asked Tolstoy.  “From the sofa to the junk room and back!”  Regardless, his plays such as The Cherry Orchard and short stories such as “The Lady with the Pet Dog” remain popular over 100 years after his death at age 44. – Anton Chekhov (16,976 points, #192)
  19. No less than Ernest Hemingway, who could be stingy with his praise of other writers, declared that all modern American literature came from one novel by this popular writer.  This writer and noted wit also wrote a number of books about his travels abroad.  For a while he lived in a house adjacent to one owned by Harriet Beecher Stowe in Hartford, Connecticut. – Mark Twain (17,292 points, #188)
  20. This Irishman penned a novel about one day in the life of a Dublin salesman which, I dare to say, is probably read by only a small fraction of those who purchase it.  Be that as it may, it is considered one of the greatest novels ever written.  Some of his other works are much more accessible. – James Joyce (17,809 points, #171)
  21. This Russian is considered one of the greatest novelists of all time.  Though his novels are filled with characters who lead sad, futile, guilt-ridden lives, his works remain very popular.  He spent four years in Siberia after being found guilty of treason.  He suffered from epilepsy. – Fyodor Dostoyevsky (20,421 points, #77)
  22. This Japanese writer’s novel, The Tale of the Genji, is considered to be the first novel ever written, and is considered the greatest work in the history of Japanese literature.  After her husband’s death, she spent time in the royal court and then wrote about what she saw and heard.  Her book was started in 1002 and finished in 1005 – barely making her eligible for this quiz.  She died around 1031. – Murasaki Shikibu (20,583 points, #73)
  23. He was a man who failed at almost everything he attempted.  Finally at age 57 his greatest work – a novel about a delusional man and his chivalrous adventures – was published.  He would be shocked to know that his Spanish language novel is one of the great influences on the European novels that followed.  – Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra (21,130 points, #44)
  24. His voyage in the Pacific led this scientist to believe that animals (including humans) have evolved over the ages.  His book about his theories has been both condemned and highly praised.  Like him or hate him, his influence on mankind cannot be disputed. – Charles Darwin (21,689 points, #7)
  25. He is the most famous playwright and poet who ever lived.  He created immortal characters, and delved into the human psyche as no writer had ever done before.  Yet, we know very little about his life, and would have lost his works had they not been collected by friends shortly after his death.  Consider what we would have lost. – William Shakespeare (21,709 points, #5)


Answers to the September 2013 Quiz

  1. Don Quixote – Sancho Panza (Miguel Cervantes)
  2. Perry Mason – Della Street (Erle Stanley Gardner – the Perry Mason series)
  3. Nero Wolfe – Archie Goodwin (Rex Stout – the Nero Wolfe series)
  4. Harry Potter – Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger – the Harry Potter series)
  5. John Falstaff – Pistol and Bardolf (William Shakespeare – Henry IV, Part 1, Henry IV, Part 2, Henry V, and The Merry Wives of Windsor)
  6. Sherlock Holmes – Dr. John Watson (Arthur Conan Doyle – the Sherlock Holmes series)
  7. C. Auguste Dupin – The Narrator who is unnamed (Edgar Allan Poe – “Murder in the Rue Morgue,” “The Mystery of Marie Roget,” and “The Purloined Letter”)
  8. Robinson Crusoe – Friday (Daniel Defoe – Robinson Crusoe or more correctly The Life and Strange Surprizing Adventures of Robinson Crusoe, Of York, Mariner: Who lived Eight and Twenty Years, all alone in an un-inhabited Island on the Coast of America, near the Mouth of the Great River of Oroonoque; Having been cast on Shore by Shipwreck, wherein all the Men perished but himself. With An Account how he was at last as strangely deliver’d by Pyrates)
  9. Sal Paradise – Dean Moriarty (Jack Kerouac – On the Road)
  10. Hamlet – Horatio (William Shakespeare – Hamlet)
  11. Tom Sawyer – Huckleberry Finn (Mark Twain – The Adventures of Tom Sawyer)
  12. Huckleberry Finn – Tom (Mark Twain – The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn)
  13. John Grady Cole – Lacey Rawklins (Cormack McCarthy – All the Pretty Horses)
  14. Frodo Baggins – Samwise Gamgee (J. R. R. Tolkien – Lord of the Rings)
  15. Robin Hood – Friar Tuck and Little John (Robin Hood appears in a number of books including Ivanhoe by Sir Walter Scott and The Merry Adventures of Robin Hood compiled by Howard Pyle)
  16. James Bond – Felix Leiter (the James Bond novels)
  17. Professor Pierre Aronnax – Conseil and Ned Land (Jules Verne – 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea)
  18. Winnie-the-Pooh – Piglet (A. A. Milne – Winnie-the-Pooh)
  19. Dorothy Gale – Toto, the Scarecrow, the Tin Woodman, and the Cowardly Lion (L. Frank Baum – The Wonderful Wizard of Oz)
  20. Peter Pan – Tinker Bell, Wendy, John, Michael, and The Lost Boys (J. M. Barrie – Peter Pan)
  21. Captain Hook – Smee (J. M. Barrie – Peter Pan)
  22. Encyclopedia Brown – Sally Kimball (Donald J. Sobol – The Encyclopedia Brown series)
  23. Nick Charles – Nora Charles (Dashiell Hammett – The Thin Man)
  24. Bertie Wooster – Jeeves (P. G. Wodehouse – various short stories and novels)
  25. Gilgamesh – Enkidu (The Epic of Gilgamesh)
  26. Inspector Morse – Detective Sergeant Robbie Lewis (Colin Dexter – The Inspector Morse series)
  27. Achilles – Patroclus (Homer – The Iliad)
  28. Beowulf – Hrothgar (Beowulf)
  29. Paul Bunyan – Babe the Blue Ox
  30. Scout and Jem – Dill (Harper Lee – To Kill a Mockingbird)
  31. Westley (The Dread Pirate Roberts) – Inigo Montoya and Fezzik (William Goldman – The Princess Bride)
  32. Hawkeye Pierce – Trapper John McIntyre (Richard Hooker – M*A*S*H)
  33. Hawkeye – Chingachgook and Uncas (James Fenimore Cooper – The Last of the Mohicans)
  34. Robert Langdon – Sophie Neveu (Ron Brown – The Da Vinci Code)
  35. Antigone – Ismene (Sophocles – Antigone)
  36. Willie Stark – Jack Burden (Robert Penn Warren – All the King’s Men)
  37. Mikael Blomkvist – Lisbeth Salender (Stieg Larsson – The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, The Girl Who Played with Fire, and The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest)
  38. Dr. Alan Grant – Dr. Ellie Satler (Michael Crighton – Jurasic Park)
  39. Professor Henry Higgins – Colonel Pickering (George Bernard Shaw – Pygmalion)
  40. Romeo – Mercutio (Shakespeare – Romeo and Juliet)


Answers to the August 2013 Quiz

  1. “Call me Ishmael.” – Moby Dick by Herman Melville (1851)
  2. “Scarlett O’Hara was not beautiful, but men seldom realized it when caught by her charm as the Tarleton twins were.” – Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell (1936)
  3. “Ships at a distance have every man’s wish on board.  For some they come in with the tide.  For others they sail forever on the horizon, never out of sight, never landing until the Watcher turns his eyes away in resignation, his dreams mocked to death by Time.  That is the life of men.” – Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neal Hurston (1937)
  4. “All happy families are alike; each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.” – Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy (1877)
  5. “I have never begun a novel with more misgiving.” – The Razor’s Edge by W. Somerset Maugham (1944)
  6. “It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen.” – 1984 by George Orwell (1949)
  7. “Mr. and Mrs. Dursley, of number four Privet Drive, were proud to say that they were perfectly normal, thank you very much.” – Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J. K. Rowling (1997)
  8. “A story has no beginning or end: arbitrarily one chooses that moment of experience from which to look back or from which to look ahead.” – The End of the Affair by Graham Greene (1951)
  9. “Dr. Jonasson was woken by a nurse five minutes before the helicopter was expected to land.  It was just before 1:30 in the morning.” – The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest by Stieg Larsson (2010 in the U. S.)
  10. “Mae Mobley was born on a early Sunday morning in August, 1960.  A church baby we like to call it.” – The Help by Kathryn Stockett (2009)
  11. “A green hunting cap squeezed the top of the fleshy balloon of a head.  The green earflaps, full of large ears and uncut hair and the fine bristles that grew in the ears themselves, stuck out on either side like turn signals indicating two directions at once.  Full pursed lips protruded beneath the bushy black moustache and, at their corners, sank into little folds filled with disapproval and potato chip crumbs.” – A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole (1980)
  12. “In my younger and more vulnerable years my father gave me some advice that I’ve been turning over in my mind ever since.  ‘Whenever you feel like criticizing any one,’ he told me, ‘just remember that all the people in this world haven’t had the advantages that you’ve had.’ ” – The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald (1925)
  13. “I am neither dead nor in a state of suspended animation.  Call me Jack-the-Bear, for I am in a state of hibernation.” – Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison (1952)
  14. “The stranger came early in February, one wintry day, through a biting wind and a driving snow, the last snowfall of the year, over the down, walking from Bramblehurst railway station, and carrying a little black portmanteau in his thickly gloved hand.  H was wrapped up from head to foot, and the brim of his soft felt hat hid every inch of his face but the shiny tip of his nose; the snow piled itself against his shoulders and chest, and added a white crest to the burden he carried.” – The Invisible Man by H. G. Wells (1897)
  15. “Someone must have slandered Joseph K., for one morning, without having done anything truly wrong, he was arrested.” – The Trial by Franz Kafka (1925)
  16. “Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again.” – Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier (1938)
  17. “It was a queer, sultry summer, the summer they executed the Rosenbergs, and I didn’t know what I was doing in New York.” – The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath (1963)
  18. “You better not never tell nobody but God.” – The Color Purple by Alice Walker (1982)
  19. “In the town there were two mutes and they were always together.” – The Heart is a Lonely Hunter by Carson McCullers (1940)
  20. “Many years later as he faced the firing squad, Colonel Aureliano Buendia was to remember that distant afternoon when his father took him to discover ice.” – One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez (1967)
  21. “Whether I shall turn out to be the hero of my own life, or whether that station will be held by anybody else, these pages must show.” – David Copperfield by Charles Dickens (1850)
  22. “Through the fence, between the curling flower spaces, I could see them hitting.” – The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner (1929)
  23. “I am a sick man . . . I am a spiteful man.” – Notes from Underground by Fyodor Dostoyevsky (1864)
  24.  “All this happened, more or less.” – Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut (1969)
  25.  “It was a pleasure to burn.” – Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury (1953)


Answers to the July 2013 Quiz

  1. London, Paris, Carton – A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens
  2. Detective, Train, Stabbing – Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie
  3. Boy, Dust, Wendy – Peter Pan by J. M. Barre
  4. Paris, Gypsy, Archdeacon – The Hunchback of Notre Dame by Victor Hugo
  5. Man, Bug, Transformation – “The Metamorphosis” by Franz Kafka
  6. Dogs, Spots, Coat – The 101 Dalmatians by Dodie Smith
  7. Savannah, Murder, Graveyard – Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil by John Berendt
  8. Lacks, Cancer, Cells – The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot
  9. President, Brainwash, Chinese – The Manchurian Candidate by Richard Condon
  10. Journey, Cyclops, Island – The Odyssey by Homer
  11. Magician, Brave, World – The Tempest by William Shakespeare
  12. Atlanta, Maids, Racism – The Help by Kathryn Stockett
  13. Teachers, Lies, Lesbian – The Children’s Hour by Lillian Hellman
  14. Black, Bird, Detective – The Maltese Falcon by Dashell Hammett
  15. Black, Bird, Nevermore – “The Raven” by Edgar Allan Poe
  16. Physician, Revolution, Russia – Dr. Zhivago by Boris Pasternak
  17. Butler, War, Georgia – Gone With the Wind by Margaret Mitchell
  18. Infant, Apes, Jungle – Tarzan of the Apes by Edgar Rice Burroughs
  19. Books, Firemen, Future – Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
  20. Deaf, Blind, Water – The Story of My Life by Helen Keller or The Miracle Worker by William Gibson
  21. Lawyer, Scout, Racism – To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
  22. Labrador, Destructive, Beloved – Marley and Me by John Grogan
  23. Hospital, Nurse, Lobotomy – One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest by Ken Kesey
  24. Boys, Stranded, Piggy – Lord of the Flies by William Golding
  25. Boy, Slave, Raft – The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain
  26. Marooned, Footprints, Friday – Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe
  27. Submarine, Professor, Harpoonist – Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea by Jules Verne
  28. Murder, Louvre, Symbologist – The Da Vinci Code by Ron Brown
  29. Buttercup, Wish, Inigo – The Princess Bride by William Goldman
  30. Belted, Flayed, Lazarushian – “Gunga Din” by Rudyard Kipling


Answers to the June 2013 Quiz

  1. He was the Trojan who harried the Greeks and killed Achilles’ friend Patroklos.  He hated the Greeks, and let them know over and over how little he thought of them and their abilities as warriors.  Hector, to hector someone.
  2. He was a herald for the Greeks in the Trojan War.  Because of his booming voice, everyone could hear him.  Stentor, a stentorian voice
  3. He was a great Athenian lawmaker – wise and fair.  Now lawmakers who fit that mold are called by his name.  Solon, solon
  4. He was the first legislator to produce a written code of law for Athens.  Some of his laws were harsh, so now someone who imposes harsh measures is said to be like him.  Draco, draconian
  5. He was said to be invincible because his mother dipped him in the river Styx which runs through the Underworld.  Unfortunately, the part of his body by which she held him was not touched by the water, and he was later killed by Paris.  Now someone who has a fatal flaw is said to have this.  Achilles, Achilles heel
  6. As a young man he was told that he would kill his father and marry his mother, and he did so without realizing what he had done for many years.  Sigmund Freud used his name to describe a psychological condition where a child has sexual desires for its parent of the opposite sex.  Oedipus, Oedipus complex
  7. This was an army of warrior women who were as fearless as any army of men.  From their name we get the word used to describe a woman who is strong and aggressive.  Amazons, amazon
  8. A love that is chaste, and leads us to think lofty thoughts is said to be of this type.  It is named after the Greek writer who described it in his work Symposium.   Plato, Platonic love
  9. The Greeks tricked the Trojans into accepting a present that lead to their defeat.  The term has been broadened to mean anything that seems harmless, but isn’t.  Trojan horse
  10. He was the son of Zeus and a mortal woman.  It is said that he angered the gods by killing and serving his son to the gods.  His punishment was to spend eternity in the underworld standing in a pool of water that receded as he bent over to take a drink, and with a tree full of fruit just out of reach above his head.  From his name we get a verb that means to tease someone into wanting something they can never have.  Tantalus, to tantalize
  11. This child of two Greek gods was born with both male and female sex organs.  His name is a portmanteau of his parents’ names, and is used to designate any plant or animal with both male and female reproductive organs.  Hermaphrodite (Hermes +Aphrodite), hermaphrodite
  12. It took him ten years to get back to his home in Ithica after the Trojan War.  Now, his name is used to designate an extended, wandering journey.  Odysseus, odyssey
  13. He was the Greek god who reigned over the underworld.  Hades, hades (hell)
  14. The Latin name of the goddess of love is used to denote a type of disease that people get through sexual contact. Venus (Aphrodite in Greek mythology), venereal disease
  15. Zeus, who was married to Hera, loved to make love to the mountain nymphs (among others).  One of the nymphs told Hera stories while Zeus played around.  When Hera discovered what was going on she punished the nymph by declairing that she would no longer be able to speak except to repeat what others yelled.  Echo, echo
  16. She was the messenger of the Greek gods and the personification of the rainbow.  Her name is now associated with a colorful part of the eye and a plant that produces colorful flowers.  Iris, iris
  17. This was originally a horn.  Now depictions of it show it filled to overflowing with various foods.  It is called “the horn of plenty.”  Cornucopia, cornucopia
  18. She was the daughter of King Priam of Troy.  Apollo wanted to have an affair with her, and she set the price high – she wanted to be able to see the future.  Apollo granted her wish, but she later decided against the tryst, so Apollo modified her gift.  She was able to see the future, but no one would believe what she told them.  Now a person whose warnings of misfortune are disregarded is said to be like her.  Cassandra
  19. This word originated as the name of a river in Turkey that follows a curving path.  It is now used to designate a journey that follows a convoluted course.  Maeander River, meander
  20. He was the last king of Lydia and he was noted for his great wealth.  Anyone who is very, very rich is said to be as rich as this king was.  Croesus, as rich as Croesus (Croesus considered going to war with the Persians, who were led by Cyrus the Great, but decided to consult the Delphic oracles first.  When he asked what would happen if he went to war against the Persians, the answer was that if he did, he would cause a great empire to fall.  Taking that as approval for his war, he fought the Persians and lost.  The oracles were right – he caused the downfall of his own empire.)
  21. He was the god of time.  We now use his name in a word that means “sequential order,” and another than refers to something that is permanent – it doesn’t change with time.  Chronos, chronological, chronic
  22. He was a beautiful man – the son of a Greek god and a nymph.  He saw his reflection in a pool of water, and refused to leave it.  Eventually he starved to death.  Narcissus, narcissism
  23. He was the god who took revenge against arrogant people.  His name is now used to describe one’s enemy.  Nemesis, nemesis
  24. He was the god of dreams.  Now a medicine that puts one into a dream-like state bears his name.  Morpheus, morphine
  25. He wanted vast wealth and he got it.  Everything he touched, including food and people, turned to gold.  His name is used to describe someone who seems to be lucky when it comes to amassing wealth.  King Midas, the Midas touch.


Answers to the May 2013 Quiz

  1. “The priest rose to take the crucifix; then she stretched forward her neck as one who is athirst, and gluing her lips to the body of the Man-God, she pressed upon it with all her expiring strength the fullest kiss of love that she had ever given.  Then he recited the Misereatur and the Indulgentiam, dipped his right thumb in the oil, and began to give extreme unction.  First upon the eyes, that had so coveted all worldly pomp; then upon the nostrils, that had been greedy of the warm breeze and amorous odors; then upon the mouth, that had uttered lies, that had curled with pride and cried out in lewdness; then upon the hands that had delighted in sensual touches; and finally upon the soles of the feet, so swift of yore, when she was running to satisfy her desires, and that would now walk no more.” – Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert (Emma Bovary does not simply receive the last sacrament, instead Flaubert ties each part of her body that is anointed into a catalog of the sins she committed with it.  Brilliant!)
  2. “An unhappy alternative is before you, Elizabeth.  From this day you must be a stranger to one of your parents.  Your mother will never see you again if you do not marry Mr. Collins, and I will never see you again if you do.” – Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
  3. “Sure,” the Boss had said, lounging easy, “sure, there’s some graft, but there’s just enough to make the wheels turn without squeaking.  And remember this.  There never was a machine rigged up by man didn’t represent some loss of energy.” – All the King’s Men by Robert Penn Warren (Warren, who based his novel on Louisiana governor Huey P. Long,  taught at LSU from 1933 – 1942.  He won the Pulitzer Prize in 1947 for All the King’s Men and won two more Pulitzer Prizes – in 1958 and 1979 – for his poetry.  He is the only author to ever win Pulitzers in both the fiction and poetry categories.)
  4. “If you bethink yourself of any crime unreconciled as yet to heaven and grace, solicit for it straight . . . I would not kill thy unprepared spirit.  No, heaven forfend!  I would not kill thy soul.” – “Othello” by William Shakespeare
  5. “I will proceed with my history, telling the story as I go along of small cities, of men no less than of great.  For most of those which were great once are small today; and those which used to be small were great in my own time.  Knowing, therefore, that human prosperity never abides long in the same place, I shall pay attention to both alike.” – Histories by Herodotus
  6. “Has there ever been a child like Eva?  Yes, there have been; but their names are always on grave-stones, and their sweet smiles, their heavenly eyes, their singular words and ways, are among the buried treasures of yearning hearts.” – Uncle Tom’s Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe
  7. “I took her hand in mine, and we went out of the ruined place, and, as the morning mists had risen long ago when I first left the forge, so, the evening mists were rising now, and in all the broad expanse of tranquil light they showed to me, I saw no shadow of another parting from her.” – Great Expectations by Charles Dickens (This is the revised, happy ending.  The first ending, which has Pip and Estella going their separate ways was so unpopular that Dickens was forced to change it.)
  8. “Blind who now has eyes, beggar who now is rich, he will grope his way toward a foreign soil, a stick tapping before him step by step.  Revealed at last, brother and father both to the children he embraces, to his mother son and husband both–he sowed the loins his father sowed, he spilled his father’s blood!” – “Oedipus Rex” by Sophocles
  9. “Leaving New Orleans also frightened me considerably.  Outside of the City limits the heart of darkness, the true wasteland begins.” – A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole (The novel was published by LSU Press in 1980 – 11 years after Toole committed suicide.  It was finally published thanks largely to writer Walker Percy’s influence and the tireless efforts of Toole’s eccentric mother, Thelma.  Toole was posthumously awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 1981, and the novel that no one wanted to publish is now considered an essential work of modern Southern literature.)
  10. “ ‘Which is it today,’ I asked, ‘morphine or cocaine?’  He raised his eyes languidly from the old black-letter volume which he had opened.  ‘It is cocaine,’ he said, ‘a seven-per-cent solution. Would you care to try it?’ ” – “The Sign of the Four” by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle  (The Seven-Per-Cent Solution, a 1974 novel by American writer Nicholas Meyer, deals in part with Sherlock Holmes’ recovery from cocaine addiction with the help of Sigmund Freud.  The novel was made into a movie featuring an all-star cast in 1976.)
  11. “Well, I’m your guardian.  We both know that, so there’s no need of much discussion there.  Now, your father says you’re to be reared as a Protestant.  I’ve no objection to that, I’m sure, although it does seem a shame that you should be deprived of the exquisite mysteries of some of the eastern religions.  However, your father always was a stick-in-the-mud about some things.  Not that I mean to speak ill of my own brother.” – Auntie Mame by Patrick Dennis (Dennis was not really an orphan, and this is a novel, not an autobiography.  Mame Dennis is based on Marion Tanner, Patrick’s aunt.)
  12. “Was this the face that launch’d a thousand ships and burnt the topless towers of Ilium?  Sweet Helen, make me immortal with a kiss.” – Doctor Faustus by Christopher Marlowe (c. 1592)
  13. “A dry martini,” he said. “One.  In a deep champagne goblet . . . Just a moment.  Three measures of Gordon’s, one of vodka, half a measure of Kina Lillet. Shake it very well until it’s ice-cold, then add a large thin slice of lemon-peel.  Got it?” – Casino Royale (1953) by Ian Fleming (Spoken by Bond, James Bond.  This was Fleming’s first James Bond novel.  He also wrote Chitty Chitty Bang Bang in 1964 for his son Caspar.)
  14. “Aro paid no attention to our exchange.  He leaned his head to one side, fascinated. ‘I hear her strange heart,’ he murmured with an almost musical lilt to his words.  ‘I smell her strange scent.’  Then his hazy eyes shifted to me.  ‘In truth, young Bella, immortality does become you most extraordinarily,’ he said.  ‘It is as if you were designed for this life.’ ” – Breaking Dawn by Stephenie Meyer (This is the last book in her Twilight saga.)
  15. “Old Man Warner snorted. ‘Pack of crazy fools,’ he said.  ‘Listening to the young folks, nothing’s good enough for them.  Next thing you know, they’ll be wanting to go back to living in caves, nobody work any more, live that way for a while.  Used to be a saying about “Lottery in June, corn be heavy soon.”  First thing you know, we’d all be eating stewed chickenweed and acorns.  There’s always been a lottery,’ he added petulantly.  ‘Bad enough to see young Joe Summers up there joking with everybody.’ ” – “The Lottery” by Shirley Jackson
  16. “Was it possible they heard not?  Almighty God!—no, no!  They heard!—they suspected!—they knew!—they were making a mockery of my horror!—this I thought, and this I think.  But anything was better than this agony!  Anything was more tolerable than this derision!  I could bear those hypocritical smiles no longer!  I felt that I must scream or die!—and now—again!—hark! louder! louder! louder! louder!— . . . ‘Villains,’ I shrieked, ‘dissemble no more!  I admit the deed!—tear up the planks!—here, here!—it is the beating of his hideous heart!’ ” – “The Tell-Tale Heart” by Edgar Allen Poe
  17. “ ‘Well,’ she said.  ‘You know everything now, M. Poirot.  What are you going to do about it?  If it must all come out, can’t you lay the blame upon me and me only?  I would have stabbed that man twelve times willingly.’ ” – Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie
  18. “. . . He was afraid for the minute, but it is impossible for a mongoose to stay frightened for any length of time, and though _____ had never met a live cobra before, his mother had fed him on dead ones, and he knew that all a grown mongoose’s business in life was to fight and eat snakes.  Nag knew that too and, at the bottom of his cold heart, he was afraid.” – Rikki-Tikki-Tavi” by Rudyard Kipling


Answers to the April 2013 Quiz

  1. What are the first three words in the Bible?  In the beginning
  2. What is the last word in the Bible?  Amen (Hebrew for “so be it”)
  3. What does a librocubicularist do?  A librocubicularist reads in bed. (Some people contend that this is not a valid word, and it is not in my dictionary, though I did find it in many places on the internet.)
  4. Who is Sherlock Holmes smarter (or at least older) brother?  Mycroft Holmes (He spends most of his time at the Diogenes Club – which he co-founded.  Sherlock mentions this in the story, “The Greek Interpreter.”)
  5. What 1956 novel by Grace Metalious was on the best-seller list for two years, and (for extra credit) what was the name of its 1961 sequel?  Peyton Place and Return to Peyton Place
  6. What best-selling cookbook was penned by Irma Rombauer and illustrated by her daughter, Marion Rombauer Becker?  Joy of Cooking (It was first published in 1931 and is still in print.)
  7. What 1960s self-help book was aimed at people who wanted to feel OK?  I’m OK, You’re OK by Thomas A Harris
  8. What George Bernard Shaw play inspired the Broadway musical My Fair LadyPygmalion
  9. What word was printed on the lower right-hand corner of the front cover of Life magazine’s final weekly issue (December 29, 1972)?  Goodbye (OK, so this question is not really about a book, but I thought you would find it interesting.)Life Final Weekly Issue 1972
  10. What book was the basis for the 1975 film Three Days of the Condor?  It was based on James Grady’s 1974 novel Six Days of the Condor.
  11. What was Lady Chatterley’s first name?  Her name was Constance – which she wasn’t.
  12. What epic poem by Homer chronicles events near the end of the Trojan War?  The Iliad
  13. What’s the magic cave-opening phrase in Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves?  Open sesame
  14. Which immortal Spanish and English writers died on April 23, 1616?  Miguel de Cervantes (68 years old) and William Shakespeare (52 years old)
  15. What was Captain Ahab’s peg leg made of?  It was made of sperm whale jaw ivory.
  16. Who wrote the 1957 best-seller Kids Say the Darndest Things?  Art Linkletter (He died on May 26, 2010 at the age of 97.)
  17. What Henri Charriere best-seller describes his escape from Devil’s Island?  Papillon (It is the French word for “butterfly.”  The book is much better than the movie.)
  18. Who was the first novelist to present a typed manuscript to his publisher?  Mark Twain (It was either The Adventures of Tom Sawyer published in 1876 or Life on the Mississippi published in 1883 – there seems to be some disagreement.)
  19. Who, beginning in 1908, wrote a total of 54 western novels?  Zane Grey (If you’re interested in Grey, begin by reading Riders of the Purple Sage.)
  20. Who is the most-translated English author after Shakespeare?  Agatha Christie (This may have been true in 1976, but may not be true today.)
  21. What playwright had four plays running simultaneously on Broadway during 1966?  Neil Simon (The four plays were Sweet Charity, The Star-Spangled Girl, The Odd Couple, and Barefoot in the Park.)
  22. What U.S. president’s mother wrote an autobiography titled Times to Remember?  Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy
  23. Name the 1991 novel by James Michner about the publishing business that is told from the points of view of the writer, the editor, the critic, and the reader.  The Novel
  24. What 1965 Thomas Pynchon novel introduces a heroine named Oedipa Maas?  The Crying of Lot 49
  25. Who took time off from writing tales of the high seas to pen Picasso: A Biography and Joseph Banks: A Life?  Patrick O’Brian (better known as the author of Master and Commander)
  26. What John Fowles novel brings a Hollywood writer back to Oxford to bury a college friend?  Daniel Martin
  27. What novelist and philosopher was known as Alyssa Rosenbaum in her native St. Petersburg before changing her name when she moved to America?  Ayn Rand
  28. What quadriplegic sleuth uses police officer Amelia Sachs as his “legs and eyes” in a number of Jeffrey Deaver thrillers?  Lincoln Rhyme
  29. What Barbara Robinson children’s book describes what happens when “the worst kids in the history of the world” misinterpret the Christmas story?  The Best Christmas Pageant Ever
  30. What incendiary how-to book did author William Powell later renounce as “a misguided and potentially dangerous publication”?  The Anarchist Cookbook (It was not a food cookbook at all.)
  31. What Mark Medoff play features a teacher at a school for the deaf engaged in a sign-language battle of wits with a defiant kitchen maid?  Children of a Lesser God
  32. What detective from Michael Connelly’s books was named after a 15th century Flemish painter?  Hieronymus (Harry) Bosch
  33. What novel did Sylvia Plath initially publish under the pen name “Victoria Lucas,” because she felt it wasn’t a serious work?  The Bell Jar
  34. Which fictional spy was based on decorated Scottish World War II commando Patrick Dalzel-Job?  James Bond (You can find out more about the very interesting life of Dalzel-Job here.)
  35. What type of dog is Tock, who wears a clock face on his side, in The Phantom Tollbooth?  He is a watchdog. (In 1969 MGM released a combination live-action/animation version of Norton Juster’s 1961 children’s book.  It was directed by Chuck Jones, and marked the end of MGM’s ventures into animated films.)


Answers to the March 2013 Quiz

  1. Accused murderer accidentally hangs himself while trying to escape London mob – Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens
  2. Architect found innocent after admitting he destroyed Government housing project – The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand
  3. Man planning to marry found to have crazed wife locked in attic – Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë
  4. Boy raised by wild animals in Indian jungle – The Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling
  5. Man lobotomized after numerous altercations with nurse in mental hospital – One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest by Ken Kesey
  6. Slave beaten to death by New Orleans area plantation owner – Uncle Tom’s Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe
  7. “Gutter Snipe” reportedly transformed into “Lady” by noted phonetics professor – Pygmalion by George Bernard Shaw
  8. Woman forced to choose which of her two children must die – Sophie’s Choice by William Styron
  9. Adulteress throws self under moving train – Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy
  10. Maids write tell-all about employment in southern white society – The Help by Kathryn Stockett
  11. Teacher falsely accused of lesbian relationship commits suicide – The Children’s Hour by Lillian Hellman
  12. King kills his father, and marries woman old enough to be his mother – Oedipus Rex by Sophocles
  13. Vicious attacks by birds reported in small Cornish town – “The Birds” by Agatha Christie
  14. Fireman hunted for not burning books – Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
  15. Man makes trip through Hell, Purgatory and Heaven, and lives to tell about it – The Divine Comedy by Dante
  16. Mysterious millionaire found murdered in swimming pool – The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
  17. Prominent white southern attorney defends black man charged with rape of white woman – To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
  18. Well-known London detective falls to death during clash with criminal mastermind – “The Final Problem” by Arthur Conan Doyle
  19. Chauffeur kills boss’ daughter, and burns body in furnace – Native Son by Richard Wright
  20. White boy and escaped slave raft down Mississippi River – Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain
  21. Doctor with multiple personalities kills selves – Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by by Robert Louis Stevenson
  22. Woman’s cells live on after her death – The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot
  23. Book exposes unsanitary practices in meat packing industry – The Jungle by Upton Sinclair
  24. Frenchman visits America, and writes tell-all about what he saw – Democracy in America by Alexis de Tocqueville
  25. Boys marooned on island savage each other – Lord of the Flies by William Golding


Answers to the February 2013 Quiz

  1. “Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn.” – Gone with the Wind (1939) based on the 1936 novel by Margaret Mitchell
  2. “I’m going to make him an offer he can’t refuse” – The Godfather (1972) based on the 1969 novel by Mario Puzo
  3. “I’ll get you, my pretty, and your little dog, too!” – The Wizard of Oz (1939) based on the 1900 novel The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum
  4. “Love means never having to say you’re sorry.” – Love Story (1970) based on the 1970 novel by Erich Segel
  5. “The stuff that dreams are made of.” – The Maltese Falcon (1941) based on the 1930 novel by Dashiell Hammett
  6. “They call me Mister Tibbs.” – In the Heat of the Night (1967) based on the 1965 novel by John Ball
  7. “A census taker once tried to test me.  I ate his liver with some fava beans and a nice Chianti.” – Silence of the Lambs (1991) based on the 1988 novel by Thomas Harris
  8. “Bond.  James Bond.” – Dr. No (1962) based on the 1958 novel by Ian Fleming
  9. “I’m walking here!  I’m walking here!” – Midnight Cowboy (1969) based on the 1965 novel by James Leo Herlihy
  10. “You know how to whistle, don’t you, Steve?  You just put your lips together and blow.” – To Have and Have Not (1944) based on the 1937 novel by Ernest Hemingway
  11. You’re gonna need a bigger boat.” – Jaws (1975) based on the 1974 novel by Peter Benchley
  12. “You can’t handle the truth!” – A Few Good Men (1992) based on the 1989 novel by Aaron Sorkin
  13. “I have always depended on the kindness of strangers.” – A Streetcar Named Desire (1951) based on the 1947 play by Tennessee Williams
  14. “Mama always said life was like a box of chocolates.  You never know what you’re gonna get.” – Forrest Gump (1994) based on the 1986 novel by Winston Groom
  15. “Oh, Jerry, don’t let’s ask for the moon.  We have the stars.” – Now, Voyager (1942) based on the 1941 novel by Oliver Higgins Prouty
  16. “It’s alive!  It’s alive!” – Frankenstein (1931) based on the 1818 novel by Mary Shelley
  17. “If you build it, he will come.” – Field of Dreams (1989) based on the 1982 novel Shoeless Joe by W. P. Kinsella
  18. “Houston, we have a problem.” – Apollo 13 (1995) based on the 1994 book Lost Moon: The Perilous Voyage of Apollo 13 by Jim Lovell and Jeffrey Kluger
  19. “A boy’s best friend is his mother.” – Psycho (1960) based on the 1959 novel by Robert Bloch
  20. “Gentlemen, you can’t fight in here!  This is a War Room!” – Dr. Strangelove (1964) based on the 1958 novel Red Alert by Peter George
  21. “Here’s Johnny!” – The Shining (1980) based on the 1977 novel by Stephen King
  22. “Mother of mercy, is this the end of Rico?” – Little Caesar (1930) based on the 1929 novel by W. R. Burnett
  23. “Listen to them.  Children of the night.  What music they make.” – Dracula (1931) based on the 1897 novel by Bram Stoker
  24. “Sawyer, you’re going out there a youngster, but you’ve got to come back a star!” – 42nd Street (1933) based on the 1932 novel by Bradford Ropes
  25. “Mrs. Robinson, you’re trying to seduce me.  Aren’t you?” – The Graduate (1967) based on the 1963 novel by Charles Webb
  26. “Life is a banquet, and most poor suckers are starving to death!” – Auntie Mame (1958) based on the 1955 novel by Patrick Dennis
  27. “I want to be alone.” – Grand Hotel (1932) based on the 1929 novel Menschen im Hotel by Vicki Baum and the 1930 play of the same name
  28. “What we’ve got here is failure to communicate.” – Cool Hand Luke (1967) based on the 1965 novel by Donald Pearce
  29. “One morning I shot an elephant in my pajamas.  How he got in my pajamas, I don’t know.” – Animal Crackers (1930) based on the 1928 play by George S. Kaufman, Bert Kalmar, Harry Ruby and Morris Ryskind
  30. “Take your stinking paws off me, you damned dirty ape.” – Planet of the Apes (1968) based on the 1963 novel La planète des singes by Pierre Boulle


Answers to the January 2013 Quiz

  1. The Wicked Witch of the West from L. Frank Baum’s The Wonderful Wizard of Oz
  2. Count Dracula from Bram Stoker’s Dracula
  3. Bill Sikes from Charles Dicken’s Oliver Twist
  4. Police Inspector Javert from Victor Hugo’s Les Miserables
  5. Iago from Shakespeare’s Othello
  6. Professor James Moriarty from Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s “The Final Problem”
  7. Simon Legree from Harriet Beecher Stowe’s Uncle Tom’s Cabin
  8. Mrs. Danvers from Daphne du Maurier’s Rebecca
  9. Lord Voldemort from J.K. Rowling Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone
  10. Hannibal Lecter from Thomas Harris’ Red Dragon (the book that introduced us to “Hannibal the cannibal”)
  11. Oddjob from Ian Flemings’s Goldfinger (He was played by Harold Sakata.  Born Toshiyuki Sakata in Hawaii, he was of Japanese descent.)
  12. Cruella De Vil from The Hundred and One Dalmatians by Dodie Smith
  13. The White Witch from C. S. Lewis’ Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe
  14. The Jackal in Frederick Forsyth’s The Day of the Jackal
  15. Mr. Hyde from Robert Louis Stevenson’s Dr. Jekyl and Mr. Hyde


Answers to the December 2012 Quiz

  1. “This above all, to thine own self be true.” – Hamlet, Act I scene 3
  2. “How the mighty have fallen.” – 2 Samuel 1:25
  3. “The quality of mercy is not strain’d, it droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven upon the place beneath. It is twice blest: it blesseth him that gives and him that takes.” – The Merchant of Venice, Act IV scene 1
  4. “Oh, beware, my lord, of jealousy!  It is the green-eyed monster which doth mock the meat it feeds on.” – Othello, Act III scene 2
  5. “Judge not, lest ye be judged.” – The Sermon on the Mount, Matthew 7, 1-2
  6. “God helps those who help themselves.” – Benjamin Franklin in Poor Richard’s Almanac (and possibly Aesop before him)
  7. “The fool doth think he is wise, but the wise man knows himself to be a fool.” – As You Like It, Act V scene 3
  8. 8.                  “For he today who sheds his blood with me shall be my brother.” – Henry V, Act IV scene 3
  9. “I charge thee, fling away ambition: by that sin fell the angels.” – King Henry VIII, Act III scene 2
  10. “The devil can cite Scripture for his purpose.” – The Merchant of Venice, Act I scene 3
  11. “The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy . . .” – John 10:10
  12. “Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.” – Psalm 119:11
  13. “To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven.” – Ecclesiastes 3:1
  14. “My righteousness I hold fast, and will not let it go: my heart shall not reproach me so long as I live.” – Job 27:6
  15. “This, too, shall pass” – Attributed to Persian Sufi poets.
  16. “God moves in a mysterious way, His wonders to perform.” – From a 19th century hymn by the English poet William Cowper
  17. “Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall.” – Proverbs 16:18
  18. “Spare the rod and spoil the child.” – Samuel Butler in Hudibras, 1664
  19. “Have more than thou showest, speak less than thou knowest, lend less than thou owest.” – King Lear Act I scene 4
  20. “I had most need of blessing, and ‘Amen’ stuck in my throat.” – Macbeth, Act II Scene 2
  21. “Heav’n has no rage, like love to hatred turn’d, nor Hell a fury, like a woman scorn’d.” – William Congreve, in The Mourning Bride, 1697
  22. “Forbear to judge, for we are sinners all.”  – Henry VI, Part 2, Act III scene 3
  23. “God hath given you one face, and you make yourselves another.” – Hamlet, Act III scene 1
  24. “Few love to hear the sins they love to act.” – Pericles, Prince of Tyre, Act I scene 1
  25. “Be what you would seem to be . . .” – Lewis Carroll in Alice in Wonderland


Answers to the 2012 Christmas Quiz

  1. A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens
  2. The Turn of the Screw by Henry James
  3. “The Little Match Girl” by Hans Christian Andersen
  4. The Pickwick Papers by Charles Dickens
  5. Old Christmas by Washington Irving
  6. “The Adventure of the Blue Carbuncle” by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
  7. Moby Dick by Herman Melville
  8. Told after Supper by Jerome K. Jerome
  9. How the Grinch Stole Christmas by Dr. Seuss
  10. The Merry Book of Christmas by Larry Wilde
  11. Little House on the Prairie by Laura Ingalls Wilder


Answers to the November 2012 Quiz

  1. MameAuntie Mame by Patrick Dennis
  2. OklahomaGreen Grow the Lilacs by Lynn Riggs
  3. South PacificTales of the South Pacific by James Michener
  4. GigiGigi by Colette
  5. My Fair LadyPygmalion by George Bernard Shaw
  6. CandideCandide by Voltaire
  7. CamelotThe Once and Future King by T. H. White
  8. Cabaret – Goodbye to Berlin by Christopher Isherwood and I am a Camera by John Van Druten
  9. Man of La ManchaDon Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes
  10. Hello DollyThe Matchmaker by Thornton Wilder
  11. West Side StoryRomeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare
  12. The King and IAnna and the King of Siam by Margaret Landon
  13. Show BoatShow Boat by Edna Ferber
  14. Oliver!Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens
  15. Big RiverHuckleberry Finn by Mark Twain
  16. Phantom of the OperaThe Phantom of the Opera by Gaston Leroux
  17. Les Misérables–  Les Misérables by Victor Hugo
  18. Fiddler on the RoofTevye the Milkman and Other Tales by Sholem Aleichem
  19. CarouselLiliom by Ferenc Molnár
  20. Jekyl and HydeThe Strange Case of Dr. Jekyl and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson


Answers to the October 2012 Quiz

  1. The thin man’s name is Clyde Wynant (not Nick Charles), and he is the eccentric patriarch of the Wynant family.  This was Hammett’s last novel.  Six Thin Man movies were made starring William Powell and Myrna Loy (and Asta, of course).
  2. The purpose is to see which townsperson will be stoned to death.
  3. Charley is Steinbeck’s pet poodle.
  4. London and Paris are the two cities.
  5. They are three former judges serving time in a federal prison who blackmail closeted gay men.
  6. Quasimodo
  7. Dolls are barbiturates taken by the women in the novel.
  8. It is taken from Meditation XVII of John Donne’s Devotions upon Emergent Occasions (“. . . therefore never sent to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee.”)
  9. It is a literal translation of Beelzebub (often considered to be synonymous with Satan), and the name they gave the pig’s head that they put on a stick.
  10. Wuthering is the sound a strong wind makes.
  11. Pied means multicolored or splotched.  Piebald, a related word, means having variegated markings especially spotted in black and white (in horses, for example).
  12. The letter is an A, and it stands for adultery.
  13. Pips are seeds.
  14. Mrs. Warren’s profession is prostitution.
  15. Lady Chatterley’s lover is the gamekeeper, Oliver Mellors.
  16. He doesn’t tell us his name.  In the first line of the novel he says, “Call me Jack-the-Bear, for I am in a state of hibernation.”
  17. She is Lisbeth Salander, and she is in all three of Larsson’s Millennium Series novels.
  18. It is a vacancy on the town council of Pagford, England.
  19. The substance is cocaine that Sherlock Holmes takes from time to time.
  20. The sanctuary is the Hansen’s Disease Center in Carville, Louisiana.

3 Responses to Quiz Answers

  1. Pingback: Book Notes October Quiz « East Baton Rouge Parish Library InfoBlog

  2. Pingback: Book Notes November Quiz « East Baton Rouge Parish Library InfoBlog

  3. Pingback: Christmas Quiz | Book Notes Plus

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