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The Trial

Written by Laura Bates

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The Trial Review

Featured Books for Young Adults Star Books Thrillers

This conversation-starting thriller sees seven teenagers confront uncomfortable truths as they battle to survive being stranded on a desert island - and each other

October 2021 Book of the Month

Utterly gripping and of-the-moment, The Trial addresses vital issues around consent, coercive control, victim-blaming and male entitlement with a desert island survival scenario providing the perfect set-up for a tinderbox situation. With this novel, Laura Bates, award-winning writer, activist and founder of the Everyday Sexism project, has created a thought-provoking thriller with page-turning potency and resonance.

When a group of cheerleaders and footballers are washed up on a desert island following a plane crash (and a post-game party no one seems comfortable talking about), their attention is initially focussed on survival - what they’ll drink and eat, when they might get rescued. But then, as time passes and a series of strange, apparent accidents befall them, suspicions mount and paranoia reigns: “There’s something ‘off’ about the fabric of the group. Like a jigsaw where all the pieces have been reshaped and none of them fit together any more”.

As the tension escalates, vital truths about gender relations are raised (and class disparity, too), such as when one of the characters observes, “The things that scare us are very different from the things that scare them” of the differences between her female peers and the guys in the group. This is Lord of the Flies with a powerful feminist message and cinematic scope.

Joanne Owen

The Trial Synopsis

After a plane crash sees a group of seven teens washed up on a desert island, their first thought is survival. But a terrible secret from a party the night before has followed them ashore. Facing deadly threats and the fear of being stranded forever, they quickly discover that being the most popular kid in High School doesn't help when you're fighting to stay alive. As the island deals each of them a dangerous blow, it's clear that someone is looking for justice. Now survival depends on facing the truth about that party: who was hurt that night, and who let it happen?

The Trial Press Reviews

'Laura Bates is one of the most important feminist voices we have and The Trial is engaging and clever, thought-provoking and thrilling. I inhaled it in one sitting.' - Louise O'Neill, author of Asking For It

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All versions of this book

ISBN: 9781471187575
Publication date: 16/09/2021
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Childrens Books an imprint of Simon & Schuster Ltd
Format: Paperback

Book Information

ISBN: 9781471187575
Publication date: 16th September 2021
Author: Laura Bates
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Childrens Books an imprint of Simon & Schuster Ltd
Format: Paperback
Pagination: 272 pages
Suitable for: YA readers
Genres: Thrillers
Recommendations: Star Books

About Laura Bates

Laura Bates studied English at Cambridge University and went on to be a freelance journalist. She has written for the Guardian, the Independent, the New Statesman, Red Magazine and Grazia among others. She is also contributor at Women Under Siege, a New-York based organisation working to combat the use of sexual violence as a tool of war in conflict zones worldwide. She is the founder of the Everyday Sexism Project.

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