Today I set off on a little Paranormal Road Trip with Jon Ronson and Rebecca Watson. I will be posting about our little adventure next week, but if you want to know what we are up to the website is here.

OK, here is the puzzle. As ever, please do NOT post your answers, but do say if you think you have solved the puzzle and how long it took. Solution on Monday.

in the equation:

43 + 57 = 207

every digit is precisely one away from its true value. What is the correct sum?

I have produced an ebook containing 101 of the previous Friday Puzzles! It is called PUZZLED and is available for the Kindle (UK here and USA here) and on the iBookstore (UK here in the USA here). You can try 101 of the puzzles for free here.


  1. Got it. Less than a minute. There aren’t that many possibilities.

    Nice one though. I suspect it will trip a few people up.,

    1. I used some logic to reduce the amount of trial and error.

      Took me about a minute.


      In homage to Richard’s answer to last week’s puzzle, however , I have “declared” the correct answer to be 3 animals and a gold coin dipped in parafin. I will accept no alternative answers whatsoever.

  2. About two minutes for me too, the first spent wildly guessing, the second writing out all the possibilities, after which I spotted the correct one right away.

  3. Under a minute. There aren’t mant possibilities. I always love the Friday puzzles but I prefer it when you have to do a bit of lateral thinkng!

  4. As a non-native speaker it took me about a minute to meditate over a meaning of ” one way from ” that is not related to transportation tickets. Then, assuming it means “+-1 away from the correct numerical value of the digit” – about 10 seconds.

  5. Well, I got the/an answer in under a minute but I’m not sure I did it in the most efficient manner. I applied the trial and error, suck it and see, stab in the dark, wet finger, run it up the flagpole (etc.) approach. Someone of a more mathematical bent may have seen an easier way with some fancy-schmancy formula but where’s the fun in that?

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