First of all, a massive happy 21st birthday to Sophie! She has now joined the adult world and is being thrown in to all kinds of things 21 year olds aren’t ready for!
We have done the ‘Judge A Book’ challenge! In the last few years booktubers have been getting together with their friends to make fun of their book judgement just from the covers! The idea of the game is to show your opponent the cover of a book they don’t know anything about, and then they have to guess the story inside just using the cover for help. Simple? Not when you play it!
These are Sophie’s ideas of three books that I chose for her, how right she was and if she got a point or not:
An Offer You Can’t Refuse by Jill Mansell
Sophie’s thoughts: “It’s a romance between a man and a woman who meet on a street at night. He proposes to her while he’s drunk and she says ‘That’s an offer I can’t refuse’ (she’s a bit desperate.) The street on the cover looks Italian so obviously they’ve moved there. An Italian restaurant owner, Pablo, sweeps her off her feet and she chooses to marry him instead and she releases that’s the offer she can’t refuse.”
Summary: Lola has no intention of accepting when her boyfriend Dougie’s snobbish mother offers her £10,000 to break up with him. Then she discovers a secret that makes her think again. Dougie would probably have broken up with her in the long run, and this way she can help one of the people she loves most in the world. Ten years later, though, when Lola meets Dougie again, her feelings for him are as strong as ever. But she broke Dougie’s heart and he’s about to discover that she was paid to do it. She can never tell him the truth, so can she get him back? Well, Lola’s very attractive and very persuasive. But even she’s got her work cut out this time…
The Name on Your Wrist by Helen Hiorns
Sophie’s thoughts: “You’re born with a name on your wrist which is the name of your soul mate. It could be absolutely anyone in the world. You stay with them forever once you’ve found them. However the girl in the story meets her soulmate and they don’t actually love each other and she is in love with someone else. She then tries to hide the name on her wrist so people will let them be together.”
Summary: It’s the first thing they teach you when you start school. But they don’t need to; your parents tell you when you’re first learning how to say your name. It’s drummed into you whilst you’re taking your first stumbling steps. It’s your lullaby. From the moment it first appears, you don’t tell anyone the name on your wrist.
In Corin’s world, your carpinomen – the name of your soul mate, marked indelibly on your wrist from the age of two or three – is everything. It’s your most preciously guarded secret; a piece of knowledge that can give another person ultimate power over you. People spend years, even decades, searching for the one they’re supposed to be with. But what if you never find that person? Or you do, but you just don’t love them? What if you fall for someone else – someone other than the name on your wrist? And what if – like Corin – the last thing in the world you want is to be found?
I Was Here by Gayle Forman
Sophie’s thoughts: “There are two best friends that are girls, Meg dies. Meg’s best friend is distraught about her death, however discovers that Meg has left her messages on her computer before she dies. Meg has a boyfriend but knows that her best friend loves him also, she gives them her blessing to be together. Every year on the anniversary of Meg’s death they go to visit her gave.”
Summary: When her best friend Meg drinks a bottle of industrial-strength cleaner alone in a motel room, Cody is understandably shocked and devastated. She and Meg shared everything—so how was there no warning? But when Cody travels to Meg’s college town to pack up the belongings left behind, she discovers that there’s a lot that Meg never told her. About her old roommates, the sort of people Cody never would have met in her dead-end small town in Washington. About Ben McAllister, the boy with a guitar and a sneer, who broke Meg’s heart. And about an encrypted computer file that Cody can’t open—until she does, and suddenly everything Cody thought she knew about her best friend’s death gets thrown into question.
These are Sarah’s ideas of the three books Sophie chose for her:
Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes
Sarah’s Thoughts: “A scientist who creates circuit boards and makes them into mazes. He then gets mice to try and the mazes and if they go in the wrong place it blows up. He has named the mouse Algernon and when it manages to complete the maze he buys it flowers.”
Summary: Charlie Gordon, IQ 68, is a floor sweeper and the gentle butt of everyone’s jokes – until an experiment in the enhancement of human intelligence turns him into a genius. But then Algernon, the mouse whose triumphal experimental tranformation preceded his, fades and dies, and Charlie has to face the possibility that his salvation was only temporary.
Big Fish by Daniel Wallace
Sarah’s Thoughts: “A boy goes on a journey in to the middle of nowhere. Probably somewhere similar to Oz down a yellow brick road. He gets lost in a forest where there are only really really big trees. Eventually he comes across a secret pond where there is a big fish.”
Summary: Throughout William’s childhood, his much-absent father, Edward, regaled him with tall tales of his exploits as a young man. But now that his father is dying, William must get to know the real Edward Bloom, before it’s all too late. Inspired by the fragments of stories he’s gathered over the years, William recreates his father’s life in a series of legends and myths, through which he begins to understand Edward Bloom’s great feats – and great failings – at last finding a way to say goodbye.
Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
Sarah’s Thoughts: “Fahrenheit 451 is about an American man who is very bitter about the world because he could never become a fireman, therefore he became a murder. He chooses to kill his victims slowly. When he chooses someone to kill he sets fire to their houses when they’re asleep and waits until it reaches fahrenheit 451.”
Summary: Guy Montag is a fireman. In his world, where television rules and literature is on the brink of extinction, firemen start fires rather than put them out. His job is to destroy the most illegal of commodities, the printed book, along with the houses in which they are hidden. Montag never questions the destruction and ruin his actions produce, returning each day to his bland life and wife, Mildred, who spends all day with her television “family.” But then he meets an eccentric young neighbor, Clarisse, who introduces him to a past where people didn’t live in fear and to a present where one sees the world through the ideas in books instead of the mindless chatter of television. When Mildred attempts suicide and Clarisse suddenly disappears, Montag begins to question everything he has ever known. He starts hiding books in his home, and when his pilfering is discovered, the fireman has to run for his life.
I think the one thing that we both have proved from this experiment was that it’s a lot harder than it looks to judge a book by its cover. It’s fair to say that Sophie was the better person at making guesses! If you’re still reading this after the very long winded post, well done, you made it to the end!
We’re going to do another Judge a Book Challenge in the future because they are a lot of fun today when you have each other to make fun of!