First, let me say straight off that I don’t generally condone blatant sarcasm, especially when uttered by a young adult.  And secondly, I also don’t really find it appropriate to celebrate bad test scores. Combine a sarcastic young adult with bad test scores, well, normally, I’d be off on a tirade about what’s wrong with youth today, how can we laugh at sub-par work, don’t kids know they need to take school more seriously?

Except the other night, skimming through my son’s copy of “F in Exams: The Very Best Totally Wrong Test Answers” by Richard Benson, I found myself barely able to contain my laughter - this compilation of obviously wrong answers to test questions is downright hysterical.  Example: “What happens during puberty? Answer: He says goodbye to his childhood and enters adultery.”

The book covers, among other subjects, Biology, Chemistry, Psychology, Math and English.  Based on the subject matter, I assume these exams were administered to college-aged students - but the creatively inaccurate answers are perfect for middle school and high school aged kids. What child, when in the throes of endless homework, mid-term exams or a final essay wouldn’t appreciate:  “Upon ascending the throne the first thing queen Elizabeth did was to…?  Answer:  Sit down.”

But don’t think “F in Exams” is meant solely for a younger audience.  Needless to say I couldn’t put it down and I truly believe this is the perfect book to share with your teenager together.  Now’s your chance to enjoy a few, fleeting moments with your child – surprise them with the book, open to page 120, and read: “What was Abraham Lincoln’s greatest achievement?  Answer: Having his face craved in rock!”  I can almost guarantee your normally ‘too cool for you’ son or daughter will sit down and want to read more! 

And besides, if they are struggling with studying for a test, at least they will know others have struggled mightily before them! (And hopefully it will make them want to study just a wee bit harder lest their answers one day end up in a book.)

Title: F in Exams:  The Very Best Totally Wrong Answers

Author: Richard Benson

Publisher:  Chronicle Books

Pages: 128

Ages:  7th Grade and Up

Reviewed by Jenny Tananbaum, NJ Kids Staff