The Book Trial is one of the many trials that can be chosen by the elders to act as entrance exams to the Wundrous Society. Each year, there are three random trial for candidates to prove their worth, followed by the Show Trial which is the final test and occurs every year. Other than the name, candidates are given little to expect about what a trial will entail. In the year of Unit 919's entry, the Book Trial is the first trial undertaken. The book trial is split into two parts: a written exam followed shortly after by an oral exam.
The first part of the trial is the written portion. The candidates are all grouped altogether in a room for this part of the trial. At first the exam appears blank, until words magically appear on the pages. Dishonest answers cause the paper to catch alight and burn away whereas truthful responses can reverse the process. The process of burning is slow enough to allow recoveries even when all but a corner is burnt.
Candidates who successfully make it past the written exam are then made to wait until they are individually called before the Elders. While the questions are phrased to sound like they have historical answers, the Elders instead are looking for candidates who can give symbolism and meaning behind the historical answer. Successful candidates move on to the next trial.
As they do not know what the trial will entail, Morrigan and Hawthorne prepare by studying the history of Nevermoor at the Hotel Deucalion (getting slightly sidetracked exploring the hotel along the way). However, they soon discover that trial is more about honesty and integrity than remembering history.
The first part of the trial is a written exam, which first appears blank, until words magically appear on the pages. As Morrigan quickly finds out, dishonest answers cause the paper to catch alight and burn away. Taking her time she realizes that truthful responses reverse the process and manages to salvage her paper just before it burns completely, and passes the first part of the trial. A third of all candidates do not make it through and are eliminated from contention to join Unit 919.
In the spoken part of the trial, memorization of history and geography facts were not helpful. Before the Elders, Morrigan is quizzed on many aspects of Nevermoorian society, but instead of historical responses they seek the symbolism and meaning behind the answers. Flustered by the initial questions, she pauses and recalls Jupiter's advice not to be afraid to make the Elders wait. Asked when the Courage Square Massacre occurred, she responds that it occurred on a dark day, when evil overruled good, never to be repeated. After a small smile from Elder Quinn, Morrigan passes the trial and is free to go inform Jupiter of her success.
Dulcinea Dearborn • Maris Murgatroyd • Rook Rosenfeld