Welcome to my stop on the Never Evers blog tour! I’m delighted to welcome Tom Ellen and Lucy Ivison to Pretty Books as they chat about their favourite school trips in literature!
1. Whitby (Room 13)
A school trip to Whitby – home of Dracula himself – was always going to be a risky affair. Fliss – the protagonist of this great 1989 novel– senses something bad’s on the horizon, as she has a nightmare the evening before the trip. And her instincts are spot on – what should be an uneventful school outing turns into a full-blown horror mystery, in which teenagers get possessed by vampires and ghostly guest rooms suddenly materialise in the night.
2. London (The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole Aged 13 & 3/4)
Adrian’s story of his school’s catastrophic trip to London is made even funnier by the fact it’s all recounted in chronological bullet points. So, things start badly (“7.10am Coach stopped for Barry Kent to be sick… 7.45am Coach stopped for Barry Kent to be sick again”), and get progressively worse (“11.50am Coach breaks down at Swiss Cottage… 11.55am Coach driver breaks down in front of AA man”) until the group finally arrives at the British Museum, only to “run beserk, laughing at nude statues”. The trip ends with the police escorting the entire school group back to their coach, as Barry Kent as been caught stealing ‘Grow-It-Big Cream’ from a nearby sex shop.
3. Amsterdam (The Fault In Our Stars)
OK, OK, this is not technically a school trip, but it IS a trip, it IS supposedly educational (they’re going to meet a novelist) and Hazel IS taken out of school to go on it. So we’re saying that it counts. Plus, it’s as eventful and emotional and meaningful as any other literary school trip: firstly, Hazel gets her heart broken on meeting her extremely disappointing ‘hero’, Peter Van Houten. And then, she gets her heart mended by getting jiggy with Gus almost immediately afterwards.
4. Birmingham (Geek Girl)
Harriet and Nat’s trip to the Clothes Show Live is obviously the spark for the whole Geek Girl series, but it’s also a pretty hilarious and eventful school trip on its own. Coach-based vomiting: check. Having to wear spare PE kit: check. Meeting a hot boy: check. Causing thousands of pounds’ worth of damage: check.
5. Hogwarts (Harry Potter and The Goblet of Fire)
Obviously there’s no travel involved for Harry etc., but for Fleur and Viktor and their mates, the Triwizard Tournament represents a pretty incredible school trip, in which they get to hang out in a fairly amazing castle, watch and compete in a preposterous contest, and get off with loads of random British wizards and witches.
Never Evers by Tom Ellen & Lucy Ivison is published by Chicken House, £6.99.
Kicked out of ballet academy, Mouse is hating the school ski trip. Jack was sure it’d be filled with danger and girls, but hasn’t a clue about either. That’s until French teen sensation Roland arrives in the resort – and Jack’s a dead ringer for him.
After Roland persuades Jack to be his stand-in for a day, Jack, in disguise, declares his feelings for Mouse. But what happens when he’s no longer a pop star – will there still be music and magic on the slopes? From the critically-acclaimed authors of Lobsters, shortlisted for the YA Book Prize.