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Five, Six, Seven, Nate!


Five, Six, Seven, Nate!

FIVE, SIX, SEVEN, NATE! is the sequel to BETTER NATE THAN EVER. In the first book, Nate Foster sneaks off to New York City to audition for E.T: The Musical. He doesn’t get a lead part, but he manages to end up as an understudy for E.T. This second book is the story of his experience in that role.

Nate is not only an understudy for the part of E.T. (actually, he’s the second understudy for that role – a fact he finds out later), he’s also given a speaking part. A very tiny speaking part. He gets to say one line, consisting of one word, “Blurb.” But, anyone who knows anything about theater has heard the saying, “There are no small parts, only small actors.” So in his own words, Nate is going to “act the heck out of” that one line.

Author Tim Federle fills the pages with humor and insight, giving us a sneak peak at life behind the show curtain...[he] makes us feel Nate’s pain but revel in his triumphs.

During the rehearsals and the preparations for the big show, things don’t go smoothly. They never do, do they? Nate gets a taste of what it’s really like to be an actor on Broadway. Although he has never been to acting school or ever performed in a play other than in community theater, he has to deal with seasoned child stars who have mile-long acting resumes and a director who can’t even remember his name. Also, his natural clumsiness sometimes causes havoc and chaos during rehearsals, but he inadvertently adds life to the finished show because of these mishaps.

Author Tim Federle fills the pages with humor and insight, giving us a sneak peak at life behind the show curtain. He also paints a very realistic picture of a middle grade boy who is discovering things about himself he never really knew. In the process, Federle makes us feel Nate’s pain but revel in his triumphs.

I had a couple of issues with the story, though. For instance, when one of the actors spills a cup of scalding hot coffee on himself, why doesn’t he yell that it’s hot? The only thing he’s concerned about is that it ruins his shirt. Scalding hot coffee should burn too, shouldn’t it? Also, after Nate’s big performance, instead of people saying nice things about him, why are they still putting negative things on Facebook? And, if I hadn’t read the first book, I would have been lost as to what was really happening in this book. I don’t think the author did a very good job of including back story for the reader.

If you read and enjoyed the first book, which I did, I would recommend you read this one. But, if you are jumping into the series with this sequel, I would recommend you read the first book so you get a better understanding of who Nate really is and how he ended up where he is.

Reviewed by Christine M. Irvin on December 31, 2013

Five, Six, Seven, Nate!
by Tim Federle

  • Publication Date: September 18, 2018
  • Genres: Fiction, Youth Fiction
  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books For Young Readers
  • ISBN-10: 153442914X
  • ISBN-13: 9781534429147