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Five, Six, Seven, Nate!

by Tim Federle

Published by Simon & Schuster, 2014
293 pages
ISBN: 978𢴒424-46939

Ages 8-11

In Better Nate Than Ever (Simon & Schuster, 2013), aspiring performer and middle schooler Nate had dreams of making it on Broadway. Now he抯 been cast as the understudy to the understudy of the role of E.T. in the Broadway show of E.T.: The Musical. Nate is also a member of the show抯 chorus. But while he can sing, he can抰 dance, which singles him out from most of the other kids in the cast, many of whom are tender-aged veterans of the stage. Nate抯 just a talented kid from Pennsylvania, totally unpretentious, and now worried that he might not have what it takes. Nate offers a great, grounded, often funny perspective on show business as he tries to navigate the highs and lows of theater life, from the disastrous decisions of the first-time director who came from the world of video games, to the wonderful mentoring he receives from veteran actor Asela (搈y first midget). Meanwhile, although lead actor Jordan Sinclair is from Nate抯 hometown, he seems stuck up and distant, but like so much else in the world of theater, it proves to be an illusion. Tim Federle抯 blithe, breezy novel is a pleasure from opening curtain to closing credits in a story that also touches on Nate抯 emerging awareness of his sexual identity and that includes a sweet first kiss with that not-so-stuck-up-after-all hometown boy.  © Cooperative Children's Book Center

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