Firstly, I want to reassure students with this: Categorically, this is the task that students surprise themselves with the most. Especially, wait for it, boys. Every year my students inspire me with their creativity and insight with their treatment of a novel and its characterisation. Every year my boys moan about this task, roll their eyes and dread the weeks ahead. And every year, without fail, my boys outperform their expectations and even enjoy the task.