Cover illustration by Emma Trithart
Join Effie Kostas as she fights to become Student Council President in her new school. With a campaign team of loveable misfits, she tackles the truly important subjects: gender imbalance, outdated school conventions…and good-looking boys stealing the last slice of chocolate cake at lunchtime. A laugh out-loud rallying call for switched-on kids everywhere.
Euphemia Kostas has moved home and school a month into the new school year. Behind all ready, Effie struggles to fit in, and leaves friendless after her first day, and the next few days don’t get any better. It’s not that people are being mean to her, it’s as if they just can’t see her. An argument in the canteen with the Junior School President makes her very visible, and determined to make changes, which means running against the most popular boy when no one even knows who she is.
One party, a friend and broom cupboard later, and Effie has the beginning of her campaign team. With a few other students willing to take a stand, and a campaign to improve school for everybody, can they make enough noise to oust the sitting President from his seat on the School Council?
Internal illustrations by Mirelle Ortega
Sharp humour, well crafted characters and a pacey plot combine to create a wonderfully wholesome, heartfelt story of friendship, and fighting for what you believe in, with an ending that had me bursting with pride for our much needed modern heroine.
Effie is loud and confident, thoughtful and self-conscious, intelligent and caring – her passion and determination do waver, but with true friends and a loving family to support her, she is able to overcome her self-doubt and carry on campaigning even when it seems as though it might be pointless. Her voice throughout is bold, honest and bursting with humour. I loved her all the more for her imperfections.
Aaron, Effie’s nemesis, is popular, handsome, laid back and carefree, and happy to sit in his role taking all of the benefits with minimal effort. Life at school is fine just as it is, and he really can’t see what all the fuss is about.
My favourite character is new next door neighbour, Iris. What a lady! With true British stiff upper lip only found in older generations, she is my Nan, my Gran and my Great Aunt all rolled into one inspirational woman.
With links to inspirational women from the Suffrage movement to modern day, and The Women’s March of 2018 this is a though provoking book that would be great for discussions around gender equality, as well as the role of school councils and politicians, and how to campaign for effective change whether in school or the wider community.
Like the sound of it so far? You can read the opening chapters here.
About Laura Wood…
Dr Laura Wood is an academic and writer. She is the winner of the Montegrappa Scholastic Prize for New Children’s Writing and the author of the Poppy Pym series.
Laura loves Georgette Heyer novels, Fred Astaire films, travelling to far flung places, recipe books, poetry, cosy woollen jumpers, Edith Nesbit, crisp autumn leaves, new stationery, sensation fiction, salted caramel, feminism, Rufus Sewell’s cheek-bones, dogs, and drinking lashings of ginger beer.
Huge thanks to Harriet and Laura for inviting me to take part in the Vote For Effie blog tour. Make sure you check out all of the stops to read about more young women who are fighting to make our world a better place, including my guest post from Laura Wood, featuring an inspirational young woman who is changing the world.