Cue Card Sample

A book you enjoyed reading because you had to think a lot - Cue Card # 814

IELTS Speaking Part 2: IELTS Cue Card/ Candidate Task Card.

[The topic for your talk will be written on a card which the examiner will hand over to you. Read it carefully and then make some brief notes.]

Describe a book that you enjoyed reading because you had to think a lot.

You should say:

  • what this book was
  • why you decided to read it
  • what reading this book made you think about

and explain why you enjoyed reading this book.

[Instruction: You will have to talk about the topic for one to two minutes. You have one minute to think about what you are going to say. You can make some notes to help you if you wish.]

[Examiner: All right? Remember you have one to two minutes for this, so don't worry if I stop you. I'll tell you when the time is up. Can you start speaking now, please?]

Model Answer 1:
I have had the opportunity to read many books outside of my academic reading lists, which helped me learn every time something new and interesting. While some of these books make us happy, some others make us sad. However, there are some books which make us think at a different level which we were never used to doing before, and today I would like to talk about one such book.

The name of this book was “Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption”. As the name suggests, this book is written on the story of World War II, written by an American author named “Laura Hillenbrand”.

In this book, the author has tried to tell us an unforgettable story of a man's journey, whose name was Lieutenant Louis Zamperini, into extremity after crashing an American air force bomber in the Pacific Ocean. Then, the book also went on to describe the epic struggle of the young lieutenant who faced thousands of miles of open ocean ahead of him, leaping sharks, a foundering raft, thirst and starvation, enemy aircraft, and, beyond, a trial even greater.

Driven to the limits of endurance, the book also goes on to reveal how Zamperini would answer desperation with ingenuity; suffering, hope, resolve, humour, and brutality with rebellion.

Anyway, I decided to read this book because I wanted to learn a bit more about many untold stories about the most devastating war in human history. After reading the book, I thought that the story on it was an ultimate testament to the resilience of the human mind, body, and spirit of a person who could see nothing but death ahead of him. 

Anyway, I enjoyed reading the book because it offered a very beautiful and vivid description of the events surrounding Louis Zamperini. I enjoyed reading it also because the book brought out a particular phase of World War II into the light with a very well-researched story which only had got overlooked by historians in the past. In fact, it is arguably the most inspirational war-related book, I have ever read.

Model Answer 2:
A couple of years ago, I was really stressed out about my job because my new boss wanted me to complete the yearly audit work within an insanely short period of time. I was so stressed out and frustrated that I actually wanted to divert my mind and attention to something else for a while. So, I walked to a bookstore in my town one day and randomly started to check the books there until one particular book title caught my attention. The book was titled “The Prophet”. By the way, I never really had a philosophical mind, nor was I spiritual, but still something in some hidden corner of my heart told me that I should have read that book. So, I bought the book and started reading it.

The book, written by a Lebanese-American author called “Khalil Gibran”, was a collection of some timeless spiritual wisdom, express in some prose poetries, on a range of subjects where the chosen and beloved prophet, the main character in the book, delivers his wisdom, observation and recommendations on many aspects of life and death before ending his exile of 12 years.

It was a short read, but it actually made me think a lot as it introduced the concept of love, friendship, passion, pain, work, crime and punishment, beauty, self-knowledge, and so much more, to me in a completely new light to awaken the philosophical and spiritual side of me. In fact, for a while, I even started to believe that some of what the prophet actually said in the book seemed very much in tune with some of my own philosophy of life – the philosophy which I never cared to nurture for my personal growth.  

Anyway, I enjoyed reading the book, mainly because I felt like it provided some kind of road map to living a full and meaningful life. Besides, what I really liked about the book was that even though, I didn’t quite agree with some of the philosophies of life, presented in it, I was forced to reckon with them due to some realities of our world today.

Sample Answer 3:
Thank you for this interesting topic. I would like to talk about a book called "Thinking, Fast and Slow" written by Nobel laureate Daniel Kahneman for this topic. Also, I am grateful to you for the opportunity you have given me to talk about this topic

I had heard about this book from a friend who recommended it to me, as it discusses the cognitive processes involved in decision-making and provides a unique perspective on the way we think. I was immediately intrigued by this idea and decided to read it.

Reading this book made me think about the way we make decisions and how we often rely on heuristics or mental shortcuts, which may not always lead to the best outcomes. The book describes the two systems of thinking: System 1, which is fast and intuitive, and System 2, which is slow and deliberate. The author explains how both systems interact and how we can use this knowledge to improve our decision-making processes.

I enjoyed reading this book because it challenged my thinking and provided insights into the complexities of the human mind. The author presents his ideas in a clear and engaging way, with plenty of real-world examples to illustrate his points. The book is thought-provoking and encourages the reader to reflect on their own decision-making processes.

"Thinking, Fast and Slow" is a fascinating book that explores the way we think and make decisions. It challenged my thinking and provided valuable insights into the workings of the human mind. I would highly recommend it to anyone who is interested in psychology, decision-making, or simply wants to understand more about how their mind works.


Model Answer 4:
A book that I enjoyed reading because it required a lot of thinking was "The God of Small Things" by Arundhati Roy. I picked up this book after hearing a lot of good things about it from friends and family. I am glad to be able to tell you something about this book here.

It is a novel that tells the story of a family living in the state of Kerala, India, and how their lives are impacted by a tragic event.

Reading this book made me think deeply about the themes of love, loss, and the intricacies of human relationships. The author weaves together different narrative threads and jumps back and forth in time, which can be challenging to follow, but also adds to the richness of the story. It made me contemplate the way that small moments in our lives can have a huge impact on our futures and how our decisions can shape the lives of those around us.

What I enjoyed most about this book was the way that the author used language and imagery to create a vivid and immersive world. The writing was beautiful, and I found myself constantly re-reading sentences and paragraphs to fully appreciate their meaning. The characters were also incredibly well-developed, and I became emotionally invested in their stories.

"The God of Small Things" was a challenging and thought-provoking read that I thoroughly enjoyed. It made me think deeply about the complexities of human relationships and the way that our actions can have unintended consequences.

Part 3 - Details Discussion

Discussion topic: "Children and reading"

Q.  What are the most popular types of children's book in your country?
Q.  What are the benefits of parents reading books to their children?
Q.  Should parents always let children choose the books they read?

Discussion topic: "Electronic books"

Q.  How popular are electronic books in your country?
Q.  What are the advantages of parents reading electronic books (compared to printed books)?
Q.  Will electronic books ever completely replace printed books in the future?

Answer to these Part 3 questions - Speaking Sample 110: Part 3 - Details Discussion


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