Your Own Worst Enemy – Gordon Jack

Your Own Worst Enemy

by Gordon Jack
Publisher: HarperTeen
Release Date: November 13, 2018
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary
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Three candidates, three platforms, and a whirlwind of social media, gaffes, and protests makes for a ridiculous and hilarious political circus in Gordon Jack’s second highly satirical novel. Perfect for fans of Andrew Smith and Frank Portman.

They say that with great power comes great responsibility. Unless you’re student body president at Lincoln High School. Then you get all the responsibility but none of the power. And the three candidates running for president know all about that.

Stacey Wynn is the front-runner, but she didn’t count on Julia Romero entering this race. Julia is challenging Stacey for the title while also putting the moves on Stacey’s campaign adviser and only friend, Brian. And then there is Tony Guo, the way outsider. Tony is usually oblivious to the school’s political campaigning, as he’s oblivious to anything that isn’t about getting high and drinking all the Space Cow chocolate milk he can stomach. But when his favorite beverage is banned at school, a freshman political “mastermind” convinces Tony to become the voice of the little guy. But what kind of voice is that, really?

If this were an ordinary high school election, the winner would be whichever candidate was the most popular. But this year, each candidate may have to sink to a new low to win an election that could change the course of…very little.


Stacey watched as Nichols tipped his Starbucks cup back and sucked out the dregs of the coffee. Then he dropped the cup, traveler lid included, into the trash can next to his desk, and went back to scrolling through whatever social media feed he found so amusing. Stacey stared at the cup sitting atop the pile of trash and mentally sorted the detritus into three piles: waste, recycling, and compost. Then she envisioned dumping all three on Nichols’s bald head and screaming, Reduce, reuse, recycle, asshole!

Okay, I know what you’re thinking… All of us the US literally just got out of an exhausting mid-term election. After all that hate and anger, why would I want to read a book about an election? I thought the same thing a few days ago when I picked this up. And I’ll tell you the answer: because this shit is funny.

I’ve never read anything else by Gordon Jack before but it seems like social satire is his specialty. Your Own Worst Enemy covers a California high school’s student body president election. And while in our world, it seems like elections last for years, in this book everything is crammed into a couple weeks. And as things pile up every single day, you wonder who is going to come out on top?

Jack is a wonderful story-teller and he is one of those unique humans who seems to be excellent at portraying young people of all genders, races & backgrounds. He tackles serious subjects such as race and sexual orientation with a perfect combination of humor and seriousness. I will say that his male characters seemed a bit more real to me (and while it really doesn’t matter, I could tell the author was male… I have a hard time picturing a woman throwing in quite so many boner jokes.)

This book made me feel a little bit better about the world we live in. Without giving too much away, it ends on a very hopeful note. One I’m hoping everyone who reads this can take to heart.

4 Spades

4 spades


Gordon Jack always wanted to be a writer. In third grade, he put that on his “What I want to be when I grow up” list, just behind astronaut and professional dog walker. While working towards this goal, he had jobs as an advertising copywriter, English teacher, librarian, and semi-professional dog walker.The Boomerang Effect was his first novel. He lives in San Francisco with his family.

And finally, here is your chance to WIN a copy of Your Own Worst Enemy with extra book swag!!

This contest is open to the US only and will run through 11/27.

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Follow the rest of the tour with us 🙂


2 thoughts on “Your Own Worst Enemy – Gordon Jack

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