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August 2016 Book of the Month | In a Nutshell: Feminism | Friendship | Fighting back |
Inspirational and insanely funny, this third and final book in the Normal trilogy is a motivating must-read manifesto for young women, not to mention a powerful wake-up call for detractors of feminism.
When two men subject Lottie to threatening sexual harassment, she feels embarrassed, afraid and, most of all, outrage at the male entitlement that led them to believe “my body was theirs to comment on”. With the backing of her college FemSoc and Spinster Club friends, she decides to (literally) call-out every single instance of sexism for an entire month by honking on a clown’s horn, and so the Vagilante Project is born. To help the Project gain ground, and to document her experiences, Lottie reluctantly recruits aspiring filmmaker Will. While he might be a “cocky jerk”, Will’s talent (and hipster good looks) can’t be denied and the campaign soon attracts major media attention. But the Project’s stresses take their toll on both her mental health and grades as her Cambridge University entrance interview looms. If that wasn’t enough, national coverage of the Vagilante Project brings out the trolls, and Lottie has to dig deep to stay sane and keep all her goals in her grasp.
For me, one of this novel’s highpoints is its incisive exploration of cognitive dissonance. For example, Lottie knows the social norm of having hair-free legs is a patriarchal imposition, but it takes great guts to ditch the razor and go au naturel. That such issues are handled with both insight and humour makes this novel all the more authentic, and Lottie’s story is full of madly funny moments, such as when she mimics a man-spreader on the tube, or when she staggers from Will “like some pissed-up feminist gingerbread man” because she doesn’t need a male companion to walk her home.
Packed with wit, warmth, honesty and passion, this novel will surely forge a path of empowerment for legions of young women (we could do with a real-life Lottie realising her ambition to become Prime Minister), while eliciting more than a few belly laughs along the way. ~ Joanne Owen
Lottie is starting a supersonic feminist experiment. For one month she's going to call out every instance of sexism she sees. But when her project hits the headlines, the trolls come out to play - and they are VICIOUS. Lottie's not a quitter, but best friends Evie and Amber are worried. What if Lottie's heading for burnout...or worse?
The last novel in the critically acclaimed Am I Normal Trilogy that looks to empower and inspire young adult readers to see the change they want to see. What’s a Girl Gotta Do? gives an incredibly honest and hilarious insight into ALL the complexities and contradictions of being a teen feminist. Of wanting to shave your legs and have a boyfriend, all whilst fighting The Patriarchy.
Teens and YA's love to read and so in addition to our Lovereading expert opinion some of our Lovereading4kids Reader Review Panel were also lucky enough to read and review this title. You can read their full reviews by clicking here.
“Blazing a feminist trail for UKYA” – Red magazine online
“This is a book to press into the hands of every teenage girl you know” – Fiona Noble for The Bookseller
|Publication date:||1st August 2016|
|Publisher:||Usborne Publishing Ltd|
|Suitable for:||13+ readers, YA readers|
|Genres:||Romance / Relationship Stories, School Stories|
|Recommendations:||Books of the Month, eBooks, Reviewed by Children|
Holly Bourne worked as an editor and relationship advisor for a youth charity for six years before becoming a full-time author. Her bestselling YA fiction includes It Only Happens In the Movies, which was shortlisted for the YA Book Prize 2018, and the critically acclaimed Spinster Club series. Holly is an advocate for reducing the stigma around mental health problems and has a keen interest in women’s rights. She lives in Lewes. Photo credit L BourneMore About Holly Bourne