Queensland Literary Awards 2018 – shortlisted
Gough deftly navigates the delicate space where comedy meets drama. Her two spirited protagonists, the naively generous Harriet, and the cynical, completely ‘woke’ Will, forge a bond as they concoct a series of pranks that challenge privilege, power, and pretence. Their subsequent developing attraction is organic and authentic.
Indie Book Awards 2019 – long listed
Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards 2019 – shortlisted
Amelia Westlake is an exceptional novel that portrays flawed and layered queer teenagers stumbling towards self-awareness and a blossoming relationship in an authentic and refreshing way. The writing is delightfully sharp, with a distinctive voice and personality that shines through on every page. The novel manages to be both weighty and thoughtful, while remaining humorous, heartfelt and hopeful.
Amelia Westlake by Erin Gough has won this year’s 2018 Readings Young Adult Book Prize.
The Prize considers first and second works of young adult fiction and memoir from Australian authors. This year’s shortlist included Between Us by Clare Atkins, Beautiful Mess by Claire Christian, Small Spaces by Sarah Epstein, Untidy Towns by Kate O’Donnell, This Mortal Coil by Emily Suvada as well as Gough’s Amelia Westlake.
Amelia Westlake follows the story of Harriet Price (rule-abiding prefect) and Will Everhart (rule-breaking slacker). The two girls strike up an unlikely friendship when they decide to publish a controversial cartoon about a sexist teacher in the school newspaper under the pseudonym Amelia Westlake – an act that leads to further rebellion, and a romantic spark between Harriet and Will. Part queer rom-com, part feminist heist, Amelia Westlake is a joy to read.
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Erin Gough’s new queer feminist YA novel, Amelia Westlake (Hardie Grant Egmont), has sold into the US to Little, Brown imprint Poppy.
United Talent Agency film agent Mary Pender has also signed on to represent film rights for the title ahead of its publication in the US.
‘It’s no wonder we’ve had such an immediate and excitable response to Erin’s second novel, with multiple rights deals underway after Bologna,’ said Hardie Grant Egmont publisher Marisa Pintado. ‘Amelia Westlake is highly political, bitingly funny, and in the wake of the #MeToo movement, deeply relevant and empowering; as one of the only authors writing queer, own-voice YA in Australia, Erin is a force to be reckoned with.’
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Please join us for the launch of Amelia Westlake!
‘After her Ampersand Prize-winning debut The Flywheel, Erin Gough’s second novel has been eagerly anticipated. Amelia Westlake has been worth the wait. This is a brilliant social satire with a feminist vibe and two strong main characters whose voices alternate telling the story … Gough has created a clever, engaging feminist romp for readers aged 12 and up that is utterly unputdownable.’ Angela Crocombe, Australian Books and Publishing
Wednesday 11 April 2018
Better Read Than Dead bookshop
265 King Street, Newtown, Sydney
To RSVP, please go to the Better Read Than Dead website.
PLAY THE POWER, NOT THE GAME.
Coming in April 2018 from Ampersand Prize-winning author, Erin Gough, Amelia Westlake is a ferociously funny romantic comedy about power, politics and an epic private-school hoax that brings two very different girls together.
Harriet Price is the perfect Rosemead Grammar student, and Will Everhart is a social-justice warrior with a chip on her shoulder. When a worrying incident with their swimming coach goes unnoticed, the unlikely duo embark on a grand feminist hoax to expose him.
Dazzling and triumphant, Amelia Westlake is the second novel from the award-winning author of The Flywheel, and a timely call to arms for every young woman who’s been faced with inappropriate comments or harassment from an authority figure.
What’s the deal with diversity? It’s a hot topic in YA literature, but why is it important? Journalist and author Sarah Ayoub is joined by writers Randa Abdel-Fatteh, Erin Gough and Will Kostakis to discuss why portrayals of Australian teenagers in books should be real rather than random. How can writers use more than just culture to create characters we can relate to? Find out what roles family, class, gender and sexuality can play in the books we read.
When: Saturday 27 May
Where: Riverside Theatre, Parramatta, 1.30pm
‘It doesn’t matter if you’re gay or straight, it’s got what I love in novels; great characters, relationships, a strong funny voice and a great sense of place.’ Melina Marchetta
‘Eminently readable prose; a relatable narrator; and a realistic, grounded lesbian romance will leave readers cheering for Delilah to find her way.’ Booklist
‘Delilah’s interactions and conflicts with her family and friends feel deeply real.’ Publishers Weekly
‘Romance fans will find the up and down relationship of Rosa and Delilah dreamy.’ Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books
The Flywheel is being released in the States in April under a new title (with a new cover) – Get it Together, Delilah!
Barnes and Noble has listed it as one of their most anticipated LGBT releases for 2017. Read the full list.
I had the great pleasure of being a part of an excellent event run by the City of Sydney at Customs House last week. Dr Victoria Flanagan, a leading researcher and lecturer in gender representations in literature and film for young people, author Will Kostakis and I talked about books and queer identity. And then we all got to make zines! I loved that part the most. It included the chance to use an old typewriter for the first time since I was a kid. Naturally I had no idea where to even put the paper, but once I got the hang of it it was very satisfying. Especially the part where it makes a dinging noise once you get to the end of a line. Microsoft should really consider incorporating that feature into their next Word version.
The Flywheel is on the Children’s Book Council of Australia 2016 Shortlist (Older Readers)! This is a great honour, especially considering the company:
The Pause, John Larkin
Freedom Ride, Sue Lawson
A Single Stone, Meg McKinlay
Inbetween Days, Vikki Wakefield
Cloudwish, Fiona Wood
The Flywheel has also made the Gold Inky Award 2016 shortlist with more fab writers:
Illuminae, Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
Sister Heart, Sally Morgan
Green Valentine, Lili Wilkinson
Cloudwish, Fiona Wood
The Inky Awards are very special in that the books are selected by teens, for teens.
Now that the shortlist has been announced, VOTING IS OPEN! If you are between 12 and 20 you can cast your vote for your favourite book until Sunday 18 September.
If you’re interested in finding out more about all the Inky longlisted books, I recommend you check out the excellent Bookish Friends podcast, which has an episode for each of them, including The Flywheel.