Thursday, April 12, 2012

Battle of the Books--Official timer

Because so many children in Burlington are under the witness protection plan, I can't include a photo of them.

Teams from nineteen schools met at Burlington Public Library to battle over book knowledge.    They needed a timer.  I'm their "local author" and frankly, I just love this competition so I was happy to do it.  What happens is two teams face off in four different rooms of the library.  Each takes turns answering a question.  They must answer with the title of the book for three points and the author for two.  Lots of times they just recite a rosary bead sequence of Canadian authors although they often begin with Eric Walters.  The rest of us seem to only be known by our surnames.  Often the kids would include "McNicoll"in their prayers with  one bright lad starting straight at me to detect any clue by my expression.  "Bah, Eric Walters never wrote anything about dragons," I thought during the fantasy questions. Or did he?  Maybe I should suggest that to him. 

The team had 30 seconds to answer and then the other team got a crack.   It was a tough job frought with technology anxiety.  "Can't I just use my watch?" was the first thing I asked about the job.  But no. Here's the timer.

Note the almost exact timing of 30 seconds here.  For thirty-eight extra seconds I pondered the answer myself..
I practised clicking on, off and clear.  All set to go, pumped even.  Here's one of my favourite questions.
 "In which book does Luke's friend Gracie disappear during an unexpected tornado?"
The kids, of course, blurted out the same answer that popped into my brain.  "Eric Walters.  Safe House."
"Try again," said Marnie, our volunteer inquisitor.
"Little, McNicoll."
"Time!" I called expertly, I must say.

The answer.  I wish I could put it in tiny letters upside down so you would have to turn your screen upside down to read it:
Valerie Sherrard,  The Glory Wind

I'm looking forward to reading the book, and many more mentioned during this fearsome battle.  I return in a couple weeks for the final showdown and to introduce them to my new title crush.candy.corpse.

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