From the New York Times bestselling author of The Leftovers comes a darkly hilarious novel about a high school election that brings out the worst in everyone—the basis for the film starring Reese Witherspoon and Matthew Broderick!
Tracy Flick wants to be President of Winwood High. She’s one of those ambitious girls who finds time to do it all: edit the yearbook, star in the musical, sleep with her English teacher. But another teacher, staunch idealist Jim McAllister (aka “Mr. M.”), thinks the students deserve better. So he persuades Paul Warren—a well-liked, good-hearted jock—to throw in his hat. But that puts Paul’s sister, Tammy, in a snit. So she runs, too, on an apathy platform—before starting a real campaign…to get herself kicked out of school.
Tammy’s upset because her secret, forbidden love has been lured away…by her own brother. Tracy’s upset because losing this election might screw up her college chances. Mr. M.’s upset because ever since he embarked on his own extramarital affair, his life’s been falling apart. As for Paul, well, he’s not sure what’s going on.
The whole idea was to educate these suburban New Jersey teenagers in the democratic process and the American way. But with all the sex scandals, smear campaigns, and behind-the-scenes power brokers at Winwood High, it doesn’t look as if they need any lessons…
Tom Perrotta is the author of The Leftovers, The Abstinence Teacher, Little Children, Election, and Nine Inches, among other works of fiction. Election was made into the acclaimed 1999 movie directed by Alexander Payne and starring Matthew Broderick and Reese Witherspoon. Little… More about Tom Perrotta