Bean Trees Chapter 12

Chapter 12

  1. Why do the natives celebrate New Year’s Day in the desert around Tuscon?
  2. What amazes Taylor about the desert?
  3. Mattie says “all things that looked dead were just dormant. As soon as the rains came they would sprout leaves and grow.” Whom might this be true of?
  4. How do Taylor and her friends react to the rains?
  5. What is the rattler a reminder of?
  6. What tells Taylor that something is terribly wrong with Turtle?
  7. Who saves Turtle and how?
  8. What is the physical damage to Turtle? What may be the psychological damage?
  9. With what words does Lou Ann try to comfort Taylor?
  10. Why does Taylor avoid Turtle the evening of the assault?
  11. Why has Taylor stopped eating?
  12. Why does Taylor start crying?
  13. Why is Taylor so depressed?

New Characters

  • the detective
  • the social worker
  • the medical examiner

Cultural and Historical Allusions

  • Christopher Reeve
  • Quickdraw McGraw
  • Snow White
  • Lone Ranger
  • McDonald’s

Medical, Natural, and Geographic Allusions

  • thunder
  • lightening
  • Tucson Valley
  • Saguaros
  • Ocotillos
  • Greasewood bushes
  • pink and red clouds
  • owl hoots
  • sheep baas
  • spadefoot toad
  • rattlesnake
  • song sparrow
  • catatonic
  • sexual molestation
  • asphyxiation
  • pedophilia
  • perpetrator
  • deviant
  • maleficent

Great Quotes

  • “The three of us had no idea where we were headed, or why, but the air had sparks in it. I felt as though I had a blind date with destiny, and someone heard a rumor that destiny looked like Christopher Reeve.” (160)
  • “The sloped desert plain that lay between us and the city was like a palm stretched out for a fortuneteller to read, with its mounds and hillocks, its life lines and heart lines of dry stream beds.” (161)
  • “As the storm moved closer it broke into hundreds of pieces so the rain fell here and there from the high clouds in long, curving gray plumes.” (162)
  • “I’d skipped dinner; I wasn’t eating much these days. When I was young and growing a lot, and Mama couldn’t feed me enough, she used to say I had a hollow leg. Now I felt like I had a hollow everything. Nothing in the world could have filled that space.” (170)
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