No losers in Battle of the Books finale

Stéphanie Alcaraz-Robinson
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Pierrefonds Comprehensive High School wins against Westmount’s Selwyn House School

West Island’s Pierrefonds Comprehensive High School team won at the recent final of the Battle of the Books against Selwyn House School with an impressive number of correct answers. The team scored 83 points.

The atmosphere was intense in Dorval’s Lester B Pearson School Board offices, as both teams concentrated to answer as much trivia about the preselected books they needed to read. Parents, siblings and friends were present to cheer on both teams. Applauses, screams and booing were heard, as the students tried to concentrate and give as many good answers as they could possibly do. 14 books were preselected this year.

The Pierrefonds Comprehensive High School team was all smiles after the literary trivia contest, which tested students' knowledge of books. The PCHS spokesperson Erin Oldford, surprised everyone with her astounding easiness to answer questions. She said that “basically, I just went over the questions over, and over, and over, for like hours! My parents helped me out a lot, and we practiced after school and had meetings.”

She stunned the crowd with her memory and answered rapidly almost every question correctly. “I can’t say that I’ve memorized everything. It’s also connecting the dots between everything.”

She read every single book and admitted that sometimes, “things get mixed up.” She will, for example, recognize a quote but not remember from which book it came from. But, with each book’s different topic, she could put them in context. She had read all the books and says she’s proud of winning, but also making new friends – teamwork was very important as well.

Young Jesse Caruso, spokesperson of the Selwyn House squad, felt good about his team’s performance, despite losing, stating that he had a great experience and got to have “lots of fun.” The six teenage boys came together and tried to give out as many correct answers as possible, but still were not able to compete against an incredible performance given by the Pierrefonds team. His proud mom looked upon him – she was there to cheer him on, win or lose.

“We all helped out each other,” Caruso is what Caruso said about his experience. His participation to the event encouraged him to pursue in reading more books – as he confided that he hadn’t managed to read all the ones that were on the Battle of the books list.

Organizations: Selwyn House, Pierrefonds Comprehensive High School, Lester B Pearson School Board

Geographic location: Westmount

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  • Kathryn Lukian-Byrnes
    May 22, 2014 - 14:31

    Congratulations to the PCHC team. It couldn't have happened to a better team.