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Sarah Govett

Sarah Govett read law at Trinity College, Oxford. After qualifying as a solicitor, she set up her own tutoring agency, Govett Tutors, which specialises in helping children from all backgrounds. She has also written for children’s television. She has two young children, and lives in London with her TV presenter, stand-up comedian husband, Spencer Brown.

Her first novel The Territory and second The Territory: Escape have been published to great acclaim, and the third in the series, The Territory: Truth, will be published in March 2018. 

What inspired you to write this book? 'I’ve always loved writing. After the birth of my first child, I thought I’d have a go at writing a book in random, snatched half-hours. I chose YA and a sci-fi genre as I’ve always loved accessible books about big ideas and grew up on a diet of the two Johns - Wyndham and Christopher.

People always say write about what you know, so I wrote about the horrific stress of exams, the elevation of maths and science above more creative subjects and the focus on regurgitation of fact rather than application of knowledge. Having worked very closely with teenagers approaching exams over the last 9 years, I have seen how unfair the system is in Britain as success is as much dependent on type of school and quality of teaching as it is on natural ability. I wanted to take this stress and unfairness and heighten it to a life-or-death situation. However, I hope that the book isn’t totally devoid of humour. I felt that the teenagers in it, even (or maybe especially) teenagers facing probable death, would still joke, do stupid things, worry about looking cool and be mortified by their parents.

I also wrote this book for my first daughter, Noa. My husband and I occasionally panic about having given her such an unusual name, so I wanted her to be able to read about a cool heroine called Noa.'

Find out more about Sarah on her website