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Last Updated on July 29, 2019, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 164

1. Is there hope for Eddie at the end? Where might he end up?

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2. Discuss the portrayal of different classes and races in the novel.

3. What is the relationship between the buried onion Eddie imagines beneath the pavement and the heritage of farmworkers in communities like Fresno?

4. What can we infer about the prospects of the next generation by looking at the younger adolescents Eddie encounters?

5. Mr. Stiles hires Eddie, and then reluctantly turns him in to the police. How does Eddie view him? How do you interpret his actions?

6. Are Eddie's misfortunes merely bad luck?

7. Although Eddie is pursued by several young women, he largely disdains their advances. Why? How are women characters represented in the novel?

8. Is Eddie's decision to join the Navy a positive choice? How should we interpret his departure from Fresno?

9. What does Eddie realize when he meets the onion seller in the fields at the end of the book? How could this be seen as a sign of hope?

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