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  • Published: 5 March 2024
  • ISBN: 9781776958160
  • Imprint: Puffin
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 256
  • RRP: $22.00

Take Me to Your Leader




Can Lucas pull off staging an alien encounter and save his tiny country school from closure? A madcap novel by an award-winning author for readers 8 years and older.

Eleven-year-old Lucas has got a new worry to add to his long, long list – his rural school is on the Ministry of Education’s list for closure. What’s his mum going to do if he and his sister have to start travelling to a school an hour or two away? She can’t drive them; she certainly can’t afford boarding school fees and already works long hours in a poultry processing plant to keep the family going. If the school closure goes through, they might have to move to the city. And there’s no way Lucas will ever leave his dad’s grave behind.

He and his friends come up with a mad idea to revive their town and save their school — they stage an alien encounter. Before they know it, tourists are flocking in to check out the crop circles and it looks like the plan might working. But there’s also the vehicle with tinted windows that seems to be following them around – why would it be interested in a group of country schoolkids?

Before Lucas knows it, he’s lost control of his plot, and a chain of unpredictable (and often hilarious) events that follow are quickly turning to chaos!

  • Published: 5 March 2024
  • ISBN: 9781776958160
  • Imprint: Puffin
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 256
  • RRP: $22.00

About the author

Leonie Agnew

Leonie Agnew may or may not be living in South America with a poodle named Juan. She informs us that her days are spent drinking sangrias and teaching Juan how to bark in Spanish, while trading sombreros on the black market via her iPad. However, our sources have located her in Auckland, New Zealand. They claim she is an award-winning children's author, a former copywriter, and currently moonlights as a primary school teacher. It is possible she has a tendency to make things up. This is called lying, unless you write it down – then it is pleasantly referred to as being an author.

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Praise for Take Me to Your Leader

This is a book about community, about family, friends, and grief—all in an amusing and delightful tale about faking UFOs and trying to save a rural school...This family, and the community that they are part of, make this book a wonderful read. It’s a vision of how things could be, one that gives us hope and the delicious warm fuzzies that we so often need—even if we don’t want to fake UFO sightings in order to get them.

Cassie Hart, The Sapling

A madcap frolic for young readers.

New Zealand Women's Weekly

[A] rollicking good novel...Captivating, funny, and thought-provoking.

Chris Reed, NZ Booklovers

Multi-award-winning author Leonie Agnew has given middle-grade readers another novel full of heart, adventure and this time, lots of laughs...I read this new New Zealand novel in one sitting.

Adele Broadbent, What Book Next?

Laugh-out-loud funny.

Scorpio Books Telling Tales book review

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