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A Book Review Reading Answers
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Ritesh Prasad

Content Writer at Study Abroad Exams | Updated On - Mar 17, 2022

The IELTS reading section assesses students based on their ability to read a passage and answer subsequent questions. These are the KPIs that are used to evaluate a candidate's reading abilities in IELTS examination. The details are required to be remembered in IELTS reading from the passage that is presented to them. IELTS academic reading is a crucial section and students are required to look after their preparation accordingly. A book review IELTS reading answers is a topic which can be utilized by students to prepare themselves for IELTS reading assessment. Candidates face similar topics in IELTS reading practice papers.The topic includes question as mentioned below:

  1. Complete the summary.
  2. Yes, no and not given.

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Section 1

The Academic passage ‘A Book Review’ is a reading passage that appeared in an IELTS Test.

A Book Review

A BOOK REVIEW - DOG WILL HAVE HIS DAY BY FRED VARGAS (TRANSLATED BY SIAN REYNOLDS)

A
This is another crime thriller from the prize-winning novelist Fred Vargas. Despite the misleading first name and Spanish surname, the author is actually a French woman - Frédérique Audoin- Rouzeau. She adopted her nom de plume from the Ava Gardner character, the Spanish dancer Maria Vargas, in the 1954 film The Barefoot Contessa. Although a writer of crime fiction, Frederique Audoin-Rouzeau is primarily a medieval historian and archaeologist.
B
Her detective books are immensely popular: over 10 million copies have been sold worldwide and they have been translated into 45 languages. She is a little mystified by her success - after all, it is just a hobby - and finds it quite amusing. As an archaeologist specializing in epidemiology, She produced the definitive study on the transmission of the bubonic plague - a book that she says "after seven years of intensive work trying to find the real vector of the plague" sold only a thousand copies. It is even more paradoxical to learn that she wrote each of her novels in three weeks flat, during her annual summer holidays. Even when she took a break from archaeology to work full-time on her fiction, the first draft was still finished within the same time frame. She uses the ensuing months to polish and tidy the prose.
C
Perhaps by virtue of Vargas' archaeological background, Dog Will Have His Day starts with a bone. It turns out to be the top joint of a woman's big toe, found by chance in Paris by Louis Kehlweiler, a former special investigator for the Ministry of Justice. He presents his findings to the local police, who declines to do anything about it. However, Louis, convinced that a murder has taken place, decides to focus on finding the body to which the toe belongs.
D
Most of Vargas' characters are eccentrics in some way and Louis is no exception. He carries a toad named Bufo around in his pocket and consults it on matters of importance, although Louis says: "You have to keep it simple with Bufo, just basic ideas. He can't cope with anything else. Sometimes I try a bit harder, a bit of philosophy even, to improve his mind…. He was much more stupid when I first got him." Louis recruits the assistance of Marc Vandoosler, one of the 'evangelists' of a previous novel The Three Evangelists. The evangelists, actually unemployed Historians share a rundown house and Marc is the medieval researcher among them. Later, another of the evangelists, Mathias, the hunter-gatherer (a prehistoric specialist), joins the Undertaking.
E
the bone fragment had obviously passed through a dog's digestive system, Louis' first mission is to track down the dog in question. Ringo, a pitbull, is eventually identified as the culprit and his owner is tracked to a tiny Breton fishing village. There, Marc and Louis establish that the corpse of an old woman missing her big toe had been discovered on the beach a few days earlier. The investigation takes in some interesting characters, including a collector of antique typewriters. Although initially suspecting just one murder, Louis, with the help of Marc and Mathias, manages to solve three homicides and unmask a would-be mayoral candidate who is in fact wanted for crimes against humanity dating from the Second World War.
F
As an aficionado of crime fiction, I find Vargas' prose far from conventional. It is original, enthralling and witty, occasionally whimsical and surreal, but always with delightful simplicity. The main characters have their little catch phrases such as "I could do with a beer" (Louis) which makes them endearingly human. She has a cast of quirky provincial characters expertly portrayed; far removed from the darkly humorous, brutally violent, hard-edged Scandinavian realism which is so widely admired these days. Vargas definitely swims against the tide of realism - there is a lack of elaborate description - no detailed depictions of the meals eaten, clothes worn, music listened-to or cars driven. This is enormously refreshing: frankly, how essential is it to know the make of a vehicle or the brand of beer? Unless, of course, it is inextricably linked to the unraveling of the plot.
G
Comparatively speaking, the plot of this book appears at first to be a little on the light side although her bizarre characters and inventiveness keep the reader well entertained. However, the story suddenly becomes convoluted towards the end and the denouement rapidly ensues, leaving the reader feeling short- changed. It is not as ingenious or inspired as The Three Evangelists - one of her finest novels and a hard act to follow - but the well-judged inclusion of Marc leaves the reader wanting to see more of the other two evangelists. Despite some shortcomings, it is still a brilliant read and I remain a steadfast fan.

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Section 2

Questions 28 to 36

Complete the summary below.
Choose NO MORE THAN THREE WORDS AND/OR A NUMBER from the text for each answer.
Write your answers in boxes 28-36 on your answer sheet.

Fred Vargas is the 28________ of Frédérique Audoin-Rouzeau. She has two main professions, and writing crime novels is her 29________. She thinks it is funny that her fiction is so popular, in contrast to her academic writing, which does not sell so well. It took many years of research before she published her book about the 30 _________ whereas she can write the first draft of a detective story in just 31 __________ , although it takes quite a bit longer to correct and change the 32 ________.
Dog Will Have His Day is a story about a piece of human bone, and Louis Kehlweiler's attempts to solve a murder mystery. Kehlweller is a typical example of Vargas' heroes, many of whom are 33 __________: in his case, he has a pet toad who he chats to regularly. He enlists the help of Marc and Mathias, both 34 ______ who had featured as evangelists in an earlier Vargas novel. They end up in a small 35 ________ where they learn that a woman's body had recently been found on the beach. In the course of their investigation, they uncover more murders and 36 _________a war criminal.

Q28. Fred Vargas is the ________ of Frédérique Audoin-Rouzeau.

Answer: nom de plume
Supporting Sentence: Despite the misleading first name and Spanish surname, the author is actually a French woman - Frederique Audoin Rouzeau. She adopted her nom de plume from the Ava Gardner character, the Spanish dancer Maria Vargas, in the film The Barefoot Contessa.
Keywords: nom de plume, Spanish surname, French woman, Spanish dancer.
Keyword Location: Paragraph : A, Line : 3 and 4
Explanation: The term 'nom de plume' means pseudonym or pen name, which a writer uses instead of his/ her real name. Here, it is clearly mentioned in the first paragraph that the French woman Frederique Audoin Rouzeau who is an author adopted her name Ava Gardner character, the well known persona in the movie Barefoot Contessa.


Q29. She has two main professions, and writing crime novels is her ________.

Answer: Hobby
Supporting Sentence: She is a little mystified by her success - after all, it is just a hobby - and finds it quite amusing.
Keywords: hobby, mystified, amusing.
Keyword Location: Paragraph : B, Line : 2 and 3
Explanation: According to Paragraph B, the detective books written by the author Frederique Audoin Rouzeau are extremely popular in the whole world, even though they have been translated into different languages. This immense success is quite shocking to herself because she loves to write as writing is her hobby.

Q30. It took many years of research before she published her book about the _________

Answer: Plague
Supporting Sentence: As an archaeologist specializing in epidemiology, she produced the definitive study on the transmission of the bubonic plague - a book that she says "after seven years of intensive work trying to find the real vector of the plague" sold only a thousand copies.
Keywords: plague, archaeologist, epidemiology, definitive study, intensive work, thousand copies.
Keyword Location: Paragraph : B, Line : 3-6
Explanation: It is clearly mentioned in the Paragraph B that Frederique Audoin Rouzeau who is a writer and an archaeologist specializing in epidemiology too started the definitive study on the transmission of plague and as she remarked in her well known book that after seven years of work and research she is trying to find the real vector of this disease.

Q31. whereas she can write the first draft of a detective story in just __________,

Answer: Three weeks
Supporting Sentence: It is even more paradoxical to learn that she wrote each of her novels in three weeks flat, during her annual summer holidays.
Keywords: three weeks, paradoxical, three weeks
Keyword Location: Paragraph : B, Line : 6-7
Explanation: As it is clearly expressed in the fourth line of paragraph B that Frederique Audoin Rouzeau, the well known writer wrote most of her novels in three weeks and it was during her annual summer holidays.

Q32. although it takes quite a bit longer to correct and change the ________.

Answer: Prose
Supporting Sentence: She uses the ensuing months to polish and tidy the prose.
Keywords: prose, polish, tidy
Keyword Location: Paragraph : B, Line : 9
Explanation: According to Paragraph B, the writings of Frederique Audoin Rouzeau who was an archaeologist too were intensively popular worldwide. She wrote most of her novels during her annual summer holidays. After some years, she took a break from archeology and worked full time on her novels. She uses the ensuing time to brighten and renovate her fiction.

Q33. Kehlweller is a typical example of Vargas' heroes, many of whom are __________:

Answer: Eccentrics
Supporting Sentence: Most of Vargas' characters are eccentrics in some way and Louis is no exception.
Keywords: eccentrics, Vargas' characters, Louis, exception.
Keyword Location: Paragraph : D, Line : First
Explanation: As it is clearly mentioned in the first line of Paragraph D that most of the characters presented in Frederique's writings are strange and unusual in nature, and Louis is one of them.

Q34. Marc and Mathias, both ______ who had featured as evangelists in an earlier Vargas novel.

Answer: Historians
Supporting Sentence: The evangelists, actually unemployed historians, share a rundown house and Marc is the medieval researcher among them.
Keywords: historians, unemployed historians, rundown house, Marc, medieval researcher.
Keyword Location: Paragraph : D, Line : 6
Explanation: According to Paragraph D, Marc Vandoosler, one of the evangelists of a previous novel written by Frederique 'The Three Evangelists'. They are actually unemployed historians who share a rundown house and Marc is the medieval researcher among them.

Q35. They end up in a small ________ where they learn that a woman's body had recently been found on the beach.

Answer: Fishing Village
Supporting Sentence: Ringo, a pit bull, is eventually identified as the culprit and his owner is tracked to a tiny Breton fishing village.
Keywords: fishing village, Ringo, the culprit, Breton fishing village.
Keyword Location: Paragraph : E, Line : 2
Explanation: Here is a synopsis of various characters presented in one of the novels of Frederique. According to Paragraph E, Louis, a character in her novels whose first aim is to track down the dog in question, and Ringo, who is a pit bull, identified the criminal and his owner is tracked to a little Breton fishing village.

Q36. In the course of their investigation, they uncover more murders and _________a war criminal.

Answer: Unmask
Supporting Sentence: Although initially suspecting just one murder, Louis with the help of Marc and Mathias, manages to solve three homicides and unmask a would be mayoral candidate who is in fact wanted for crime against humanity dating from the second world war.
Keywords: unmask, suspecting, Marc and Mathias, three homicides, mayoral candidate.
Keyword Location: Paragraph : E, Line : Last
Explanation: It is clearly expressed in the last line of Paragraph E that Louis, a well known character in Frederique's novel with the help of his two companions Marc and Mathias manages to solve three homicides and unveil a would be official candidate, who is wanted for crimes against humanity.

Questions 37 to 40

Do the following statements agree with the views of the writer in SECTION 3?
In boxes 37-40 on your answer sheet, write

  • YES - if the statement agrees with the views of the writer
  • NO - if the statement contradicts the views of the writer
  • NOT GIVEN - if it is impossible to say what the writer thinks about this

Q37. Vargas' style of writing is typical of crime fiction.

Answer: No
Supporting Sentence: As an aficionado of crime fiction, I find Vargas' prose far from conventional. It is original, enthralling and witty, occasionally whimsical and surreal but always with delightful simplicity.
Keywords: prose, conventional, original, enthralling, witty, delightful, simplicity.
Keyword Location: Paragraph : F, Line : 1 & 2
Explanation: The author is enthusiastic and fond of crime fiction. But according to him/her, Vargas' fiction is not conventional. It is genuine, enthralling and a perfect blend of wit and humor. Sometimes it seems to us a little bit whimsical or surrealistic in nature but it is to be noted that Vargas' writings have a delightful simplicity. Thus, the sentence is incorrect.

Q38. The style has much in common with Scandinavian crime novels.

Answer: No
Supporting Sentence: She has a cast of quirky provincial characters expertly portrayed ; far removed from the darkly humorous, brutally violent, hard- edged Scandinavian realism which is so widely admired these days. Vargas definitely swims against the tide of realism - there is a lack of elaborate description- no detailed depictions of the meals eaten, clothes worn, music listened to or cars driven.
Keywords: removed, Scandinavian realism, swims, tide of realism.
Keyword Location: Paragraph : F, Line : 4-6
Explanation: The characters presented in Vargas' writings are unconventional and provincial in nature. Each character she portrayed in her novels are totally different from the Scandinavian portrayal. As Scandinavian characters are humorous, violent and hard-edged. Thus, Vargas is definitely going against Scandinavian realism. She presented her characters in a more refreshing way. Hence, the statement is incorrect here.

Q39. Detailed descriptions are only useful to the reader when they develop the storyline.

Answer: Yes
Supporting Sentence: Vargas definitely swims against the tide of realism - there is a lack of elaborate description - no detailed depictions of the meals eaten, clothes worn, music listened to or cars driven. This is enormously refreshing : frankly, how essential is it to know the make of a vehicle or the brand of beer ? Unless, of course, it is inextricably linked to the unraveling of the plot.
Keywords: 'no detailed depictions', 'enormously refreshing', 'it is inextricably linked to the unraveling of the plot'.
Keyword Location: Paragraph : F, Line : 6-8
Explanation: As the last two lines of Paragraph F implies that detailed illustrations are really helpful to the readers to develop their storyline. According to the author, it is 'enormously refreshing' thing. As the detailed information is completely knitted to the plot itself. So, the statement is correct.

Q40.The Three Evangelists' is Vargas' best selling novel.

Answer: Not Given
Supporting Sentence: Louis recruits the assistance of Marc Vandoosler, one of the 'evangelists' of a previous novel The Three Evangelists. The evangelists, actually unemployed Historians share a rundown house and Marc is the medieval researcher among them.
Keywords: assistance, Marc Vandoosler, evangelists, The Three Evangelists.
Keyword Location: Paragraph D: lines 6-7

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