Take four middle school students, a 20-title booklist, months of preparation, a computer, and 25 very detailed questions. Reproduce that scenario 94 times around the state and you have Battle-of-the-Books, a statewide literary activity which climaxes during one week each February as teams huddle around a computer in their individual schools to test their knowledge of the plots, characters, and settings of the books on that year’s list.

Displaying their participation ribbons immediately after the competition are the members of this year’s team at T.J. Walker Middle School in Sturgeon Bay. (Left to right) Izzy Hitzman, Charles Malek, Calvin Gordon and Tim Dahl tied with seven other teams for fourteenth place. Makayla Keller was the alternate team member who attended every practice.

For more information about Battle-of-the-Books, visit the Web site of the sponsoring organization, The Wisconsin Educational Media and Technology Association (WEMTA), at