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Invitation to the Game

Keep a "character chart." As you read more about each character, fill in the spaces on your chart.

Ch. 1 - April 2154 - The Last Rites


p.  1   domestic
p.  5   robotized
p.  7   drone
p.  9   pontificationg
p. 11   manifest
p. 12   garish
p. 13   acrid
p. 16   anarchy
p. 18   conspicuous
p. 22   raucous
p. 23   billet
p. 27   productive
p. 29   congenial

Chapter 2 - May to June 2154 - Into the Night Jungle


p. 30   gaudy
p. 33   co-conspirators
p. 35   aggressions
p. 36   anticlimax
p. 39   entrepreneur
p. 40   propaganda
p. 42   axiomatic
p. 43   labyrinthine
p. 44   portcullis
p. 50   fossil fuels

Try answering these questions as you read.

Questions for Chapters 1 & 2

How do you feel about Lisse's assignment to the Designated Area? Does it seem fair? Why or why not?

Would you feel happy doing a job that you knew a robot could do? Why?

Why did robots start doing the jobs people once did?

What do you think the students who are going to have jobs think about Lisse and her friends who have been assigned to a life of leisure?

How would you explain the bizarre night life of the DA?

Why do you think the main characters were invited to The Game?

From what point of view is the story being told?

Who is the narrator?

What is the setting?

What conflicts are being introduced?

Ch. 3 - June 17, 2154 - Bread and Circuses


p. 58   alien
p. 59   unique
p. 61   anteroom
p. 65   scenario
p. 66   fissure
p. 67   ellipse

Ch. 4 - July 2154 - The Treasure Seekers


p. 70   uninflected
p. 72   sterilization
p. 80   smug

Questions for Ch. 3 and 4.

How do the employed feel about the unemployed?

What is "The Game"?

What happens to them in "The Game"?

What is the significance in the newspaper headline Lisse sees on the ride home?

What are their outings like?

What do you think of "The Game"?

Ch. 5 - July 2154 - The Archbishop or the Grasshopper?


p. 89   mizzling

Ch. 6 - Autumn and Winter 2154 - The Milk of Paradise


p. 104    manipulate
p. 105    untainted
p. 106    dissuaded
p. 112    oppresive

Questions for Chapters 5 and 6.

How do you feel when you learn that the jelly in Scylla's hair was used to attach electrodes to her head in order to create her dream experiences?

If you had been a group member, would you have continued playing "The Game"?

Why do you think the employed dislike the unemployed so intensely even though they must know that teenagers like Lisse had no choice in determining their destiny?

What reasons might the government have for requiring that the unemployed live apart from the employed and that they dress differently? Why aren't the unemployed allowed access to any contemporary news or information?

Why does the author postpone the arrival of Benta and Rich instead of sending them immediately to the Designated Area with the others?

As the group goes out to meet Benta, a piece of paper blows by that says, "Down with the government. Work for the unemployed." It was written by an underground protest group. Lisse and the others ignore it. What is the significance of this scene?

In the beginning of Chapter 6, Lisse recalls the following fragment of a couplet from a nineteenth-century poem: "Beware, beware . . . for he on honeydew has fed and drunk the milk of Paradise." What do you think this means? Why do you think it came to Lisse's mind?

Why do you think that the author makes Rich such a disagreeable character?

Chapter 7 - May 2155 - Second Level


p. 118   trudged
p. 116   translucent
p. 121   lean-to
p. 123   subtlety
p. 128   plaiting

p. 137   aversion
p. 139   emigrate
p. 140   obstinate
p. 141   bole
p. 142   lichen

Questions for Chapters 7 & 8

Why is the game so different now?

Describe some difficulties they are having.

What have they discovered or concluded? Why?

How does each person's skill help them survive?

Re: Ch. 8: Explain each of their theories about where they are and/or what happened.

Chapter 9 - June 2155 - Out of the Egg


page 152   resignation
     153   intolerable
page 154   gleaned
page 156   unfledged
page 157   biodegradable
page 160   apathy
page 162   coaxed

Chapter 10 - June 2157 - Prize


page 170   meander
page 171   laborious

Questions for Chapters 9 and 10

What is the symbolism of the plastic capsule?

Explain the last line of the book.

Winning the game - what did they conclude?

Why weren't they asked?

Why were they not to have anything?

Why did they have to start from scratch?

How did they get out of depression?