There are some eternal questions that seem to be more eternal than others.
“What is the best Eleven Plus book to buy?”
Delia Smith in her 1978 `Complete Cookery Course’ started with the words:
“It would be quite unthinkable for a carpenter or a dressmaker or even an amateur gardener to attempt the create anything worthwhile without the right tools for the job.” (Delia managed 711 pages in this edition.)
Our 1942 edition of `Women’s Home Companion Cook Book’ starts Chapter 1 with the words: “The experienced friend who knows by the feel when the dough is right and advises you to put in about as much butter as you need has been the despair of the beginner.” (This leaves a further 950 pages to work through!)
Going a little further back, 1938, we have a copy of `Modern Cookery Illustrated’ by Lydia Chatterton. (This is a mere 640 pages.) This cook book starts with the words: `To the modern housewife the kitchen is the workshop of the home, compact, well arranged, efficient.”
Choosing an Eleven Plus book to pin your hopes on is therefore rather like choosing a recipe that will work for all occasions.
Delia reminded us that we have to have the right tools for the job.
The Women’s Home Companion mentions the `experienced friend’.
Lydia stresses the need to be organised and efficient.
In answer, therefore, to which is the right book we need to consider that you may need to buy a selection of books. By all means make shameless use of your friends who have been there before. And finally, don’t be afraid to organise your child for that crucial Eleven Plus year, to within an inch of his or her life.