India Smythe Stands Up

The hilarious new novel from the TSBA award-winning author of The Territory series.

14-year-old India Smythe has caught the eye of Ennis, the hottest boy at St Joseph’s. But nothing’s ever easy when you’re dealing with horrific teachers, a dad who’s convinced every boy is a ‘sex pest’, a best friend who talks you into embarrassing makeovers to look good on Instagram and the odd kissing-induced hospitalisation.  And does India even want Ennis? Or should she risk social relegation and go for the orchestra geek with the extra-long forehead who she actually enjoys talking to?   

We believe that the best people to decide whether a teen book is funny and relatable are teenagers themselves, so we asked over 30 teenagers from schools up and down the country what they thought.

‘Literally ROFL’ Maame O, aged 14

‘Brilliantly written, made me laugh out loud millions of times’ Amelia L, aged 13 

‘Hilarious and just plainly brilliant’ Svetlana T, aged 11

‘One of the best books I’ve ever read’ Isabella, aged 12

‘Soooo funny … I would 10,000% recommend this to everyone’ Cleo, aged 15

‘Conveys a really powerful message about friendship and status’ Sophie, aged 12

‘Hilarious … really captured the reality of school … I loved it!’ Eliza B, aged 13

‘A must for all teens’ Holly-H C, aged 14

Sarah Govett graduated with a first-class degree in Law from Oxford University. After qualifying as a solicitor, she set up her own tutoring agency, which specialises in working with teenagers. 

Her critically acclaimed The Territory series was shortlisted for the Times Chicken House Children’s Fiction Prize in 2014 and won the Gateshead Teen Book Prize in February 2017. It also won the Trinity Schools Book Award in 2018 (as voted for by children from the 24 participating schools across London and the South East). The television and film rights have recently been optioned by New Pictures – executive producers of Netflix’s The Innocents and producers of BBC’s The Missing. 

Sarah is an in-demand speaker at secondary schools and has the support of a network of school librarians, independent bookshops and numerous Waterstones stores. Two schools even chose to gift a copy of The Territory to an entire Year Group as part of a reading push. She has also appeared at the Southbank Literature Festival, The Barnes Children’s Literature Festival, The Edinburgh International Book Festival and will be at this year’s Cheltenham Literature Festival. She has featured on BBC Radio and is a contributor to Huffington Post.

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