Describe A book that had a major influence on you – IELTS Cue Card Sample 88
Describe a book that has influenced on you.
You should say:
- what the name of the book is & who the author is
- how you first heard of the book
- what the main story of the book is
- and explain why it played such an important role in your life.
Sample Answer 1
According to popular belief, reading as a habit is going out of fashion day by day. Today, only a handful of people still pursue the habit of reading books due to the availability of countless leisure activities on the internet and the prevalence of social media platforms. However, I have always been a book enthusiast ever since middle school. Several novels and books have inspired me over the years. Authors like Khaled Hosseini, Jhumpa Lahiri, and Paulo Coelho are some of the authors whose work I enjoy and appreciate. However, a book called ‘1984’ has influenced me the most out of all the books I have read. The author of this book is George Orwell, which is the pen name of English novelist Eric Arthur Blair.
The first time I heard of 1984 was during an English class in high school, as our English teacher suggested some classic novels to read during our summer vacation. I immediately ordered most of the books on the list from an online shopping platform and even after reading this book for the first time, I have re-read it several times afterwards.
The story revolves around an individual living in a dystopian world where the general public is oppressed under a totalitarian regime. The book is an account of events that happen to the protagonist as we peek into a subject’s life in a totalitarian form of government.
The book played a significant role in my life because after I read the book, I developed an interest in writing. 1984 also introduced me to several new social and psychological concepts. I always read segments of the book whenever I have free time to re-visit the emotions I felt the first time I read those parts of the book.
Sample Answer 2
I’ve had to deal with an overwhelming workload recently. However, if I have any spare time, I would like to sit down with a book and a cup of tea. Books always keep me calm and relaxed. Until now, I have read numerous books, but the one which has the greatest influence on me until now is The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho.
Alchemist was first published in 1988, but it is not until 2015 that I read this book. At that time, I had read “Little Prince”, and fallen head over heels in love with it. Then all of a sudden, I stumbled upon a review about Alchemist written that “It is like Little Prince for Asians”, which made me so curious about it and hunger for reading it. I decided to buy this book straight away. After spending a whole day reading the book, The Alchemist became my favorite book, surpassing “Little Prince”.
Although the book is not as thick as other famous novels like “Gone with the wind” and the like, it has still succeeded in inspiring a devoted following around the world. This story is about an Andalusian shepherd boy named Santiago who travels from his homeland in Spain to Egyptian desert in search of a buried treasure in the Pyramids. On the way he reach the destination, there are a number of obstacles that he has to overcome, and some people that give him a lot of lessons about life.
Though this kind of journey can be told in many other books, Alchemist, dazzling in its powerful simplicity and inspiring wisdom can give me an unique outlook on life. This story has successfully taught me about the importance of passion in every life. To pursue your passion, you should try as hard as possible.
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- Deal with something (phrase) to take action to do something, especially to solve a problem
Eg: Raj deals with the Japanese people for business purposes.
- Fall head over heels in love with (idiom) love somebody
Eg: Mary is head over heels in love with her new-born daughter.
- All of a sudden (phrase) suddenly
Eg: All of a sudden, we heard the scream of a woman in the backyard.
- Hunger: have a strong desire or craving for.
Eg: All actors hunger for such a role
- Straight away: without delay
Eg: Rose should consult a doctor straight away.
- Surpass: exceed; be greater than.
Eg: Prewar levels of production were surpassed in 1929
- Symbolic: serving as a symbol.
Eg: A repeating design symbolic of eternity
- The like (phrase) and other similar things
Eg: There are courts for tennis and badminton and the like
- Following (noun) a body of supporters or admirers
Eg: Shayne Ward attracted a worldwide following because of his beautiful music.
- Shepherd boy: a boy who tends and rears sheep.
Eg: In numerous prints donkeys and sheep enslave millers and shepherds ; farmers pull ploughs or carry sacks and baskets.
- Pursue: follow (someone or something) in order to catch
Eg: The officer pursued the van
- Numerous: great in number; many.
Eg: He has attended numerous meetings and social events
- Dazzle in (phrasal verb): to impress someone a lot, for example with your beauty, intelligence, or skill
Eg: I am dazzled by Artificial Intelligence, but convinced by it.
- Outlook on (phrase) your general attitude to things
Eg: John has a different outlook on life.