New girl, Effie Kostas, might just have bitten off more than she can chew. Running a high-stakes campaign to be Junior Class President on the School Council against one of the most popular boys in school may not be the best way of fitting in, but Effie is not the sort of girl to sit around and tolerate injustice.
Having gathered a campaign team of others who don’t fit in, Effie finds friendship and support as she valiantly takes on the favourite in the election. But can organisation skills, plenty of stationery and big hair defy the odds and make a difference?
‘Vote for Effie’ is a wonderful read, full of humour. Effie is brilliant- optimistic, opinionated and intelligent, she hates injustice and will fight for any cause she believes in. The whole book is perfect for tackling issues of inequality that affect those at school- the lack of a girls’ foot ball team, for example, or the diversion of all funding to support the boys’ sports teams. From this platform, it is easy to look at wider issues involving gender inequality, encouraging children to speak out about the inequalities they encounter in their lives.
The book is full of great characters. Effie’s little sister, Lil, is a wonderful creation, feisty, full of life and wonderfully quirky. Iris, their elderly neighbour is also brilliantly written and her relationship with the girls perfectly illustrates all the positives of cross generational relationships. But my favourite is Zo - and I’m not going to spoil anything in the story by saying why!
The conflict between Effie and her arch nemesis, Aaron Davis, ends on a more positive note, showing the importance of working together. Although he initially fits the stereotype of arrogant, popular school sporting hero, the reader discovers there is more to Aaron than it first appeared and the same can be said for other characters. Effie’s Greek heritage is also offers children of Greek and Greek Cypriot origin to see themselves represented in such a positive book; Effie’s dad is another fabulous character! The whole book is cleverly designed to challenge the reader to think- and to inspire action.
‘Votes for Effie’ is essential for the library and is already next on my list of books to read to my Year 6 class. Brilliant stuff!
Vote for Effie Laura Wood
Scholastic ISBN: 978-1407187723