Jostein Gaarder, an intellectual, has a soft spot for children. His novels can be considered as children's stories, but his young characters have serious issues to deal with. For instance, "Through a Glass, Darkly" won't be Alice's next excursion into Wonderland. The subject was death, which would be inappropriate for kids. But Gaarder became renowned for metafiction. This was a literary device that would prompt readers to reflect on the story and characters. In this regard, "The Christmas Mystery" would come to mind. An angel would bring a young girl to Bethlehem, where they would witness the Nativity. A time travel would follow. The lass witnessed the history of Europe during the past millennium or so. Some readers would be intrigued by the chapter that described the Pied Piper of Hamelin. He was a legend during the Middle Age, no different from King Arthur. But folklore have a historical basis somewhere.
In the case of "Sophie's World", a fourteen-year-old girl became a student of philosophy. Some would suggest that boredom was the reason behind her interest, but it would be further from the truth. Children are a curious lot. They're eager to know, which may be the reason behind the high demand for Lego blocks. In fact, Sophie Amundsen, the titular character, had her own collection of Lego blocks tucked somewhere in her room. She outgrew her fondness for that toy or so she thought. Philosophy gave her renewed interest. But how much knowledge she could take?
Push the "play" button, and watch a video
Sophie only saw the Acropolis on pictures, but a video (sent by a mysterious stranger) would make her eager to set foot in Athens. A middle-aged man was transported back in time, while his surrounding transformed into an august setting. Parthenon was on its full glory, with men in tunics walking around. It was a civilization from bygone time, which would never be repeated again. So the video (and "play" button). But Sophie learned a few things.
Philosophy is not a daunting subject at all. It's no different from mathematics, where you need patience. Unless you are a gifted individual, then don't expect to comprehend the ideas right away. It happened to Sophie, which would be normal for girls of her age. Gaarder was rather playful in his approach to the subject matter, as another subplot was unfolding while Sophie tried to grasp the arguments of philosophers like Descartes. Some may find it anticlimactic, while other would get a pleasant surprise.
There's no right and wrong in philosophy, which belie the logic being taught to Philosophy students. A person's background and beliefs would color it, which in turn give a special meaning behind the words of Baruch Spinoza. Not a few would argue with it, but no one would say that the words of a philosopher are gospel truth. They rather serve as a guide.
Last but not the least, philosophy can be fun to read. It seems hard to believe, as teenage girls are starting to show interest in boys. But it will be up to the adult to be creative about it. And this mysterious stranger did a great job.