Back in 2012, Laura Bates launched The Everyday Sexism project, a website where women could share their daily sexist struggles. The platform shone a light on things that women had been taught to be kept quiet about before, and sent out the message that we should never be scared to share. But spearheading an important feminist cause isn't the only thing Bates has been up to. She's now looking to teach a younger generation, as Laura Bates has just announced a young adult novel.
Gleam Titles, the literary PR company who have also worked with Zoella, announced the news of Bates' upcoming novel The Burning via their Instagram. According to the post, the novel's out on Feb. 21, 2019, and author of the YA classic How Do You Like Me Now?, Holly Bourne, has already called it "a book teen girls NEED to read." In it, Bates takes the YA novel format and puts her own unique twist on it. The book follows Anna — a girl who's just moved to a new town and a new school — but with all of her social media erased. Leaving behind her former life, there's now "Nothing to link her to the ‘incident’," according to Gleam Titles' description. "At least that’s what she thinks. Until the whispers start up again..." Ooh.
What's behind the fiery title? Well, the book's publisher, Simon and Schuster gave some clues on their site: "Fire is like a rumour. You've might think you've extinguished it but one creepy, red tendril, one wisp of smoke is enough to let it leap back into life again. Especially if someone is watching, waiting to fan the flames..." It definitely sounds intriguing. I already want to know what mischief this Anna's been up to.
S&S picked up the rights for the book back in April, 2018, according to The Bookseller, and it reportedly had commissioning editor Lucy Rogers fizzing with praise, "Not only is this gripping, page-turning YA but it also cleverly and unsettlingly exposes the age-old prejudices that girls still face today. She also felt pleased to help continue Bates' legacy, since, she says, "Laura is the leading voice of a new wave of feminism and we’re honoured to be introducing her to a whole new army of readers.”
It's not Bates' first time working with S&S, though. They published her collection of essays on sexism — suitably titled Misogynation — which came out on Feb. 22, 2018. It might be one to add to your favourite feminist's stocking, as according to S&S, it uncovers "the sexism that exists in our relationships, our workplaces, our media, in our homes and on our streets, but which is also firmly rooted in our lifelong assumptions and in the actions and attitudes we explain away, defend and accept".
It's an excellent follow up to Everyday Sexism, and now with her debut YA novel due in the coming months, Bates is inspiring a new generation of young feminists to fight the good fight.