BRACEBRIDGE, ON – As the matches wound down, the tension heated up.

Students from 29 different schools across Trillium Lakelands DSB competed for the championship in the seventh annual Battle of the Books, held at the Rene Caisse Theatre in Bracebridge.

As questions were read, Reach-for-the-Top style, to teams of four students, hands waited restlessly on buzzers, ready to pounce for a chance to answer.

“Your answer, please….” says the quote-reader, and the students huddle to prepare their best guess.

They’ve read, as teams, 10 books – both fiction and non-fiction, some with an aboriginal flavor, others with appeal for boys.

Organizers Sue Milner and Mary Ellen Boyd said the event helps foster confidence and enjoyment in reading, even among students who might otherwise be less interested.

“This event put purpose and challenge into what is sometimes thought of as a purely academic activity,” Boyd said. “Kids respond to that, and to the fact that they can form teams and divide up the reading on their own.”

This years winners?

Leslie Frost PS defeated Riverside PS for the Junior title; J. Douglas Hodgson ES all-boys team defeated Bobcaygeon PS (last year’s champion in both divisions) for the Intermediate title.