Thirteen-year-old Calvin knows he’s destined to be a star. . . if he can just stop making embarrassing mistakes onstage, like getting stuck on a single line—"Forsooth!"—during the school play. The summer after seventh grade, he’s hoping for a fresh start. All he has to do is prove himself as an actor and fix the awkwardness with his friends that started after the play.
But nothing’s going according to plan. His parents don’t get his love of performing. His best friend is moving on without him. And he might have a crush that could change everything.
Surrounded by drama on all sides, Calvin will have to go off script if he’s going to be a real friend and be true to himself.
|Interest Level||Grade 6 - Grade 8|
|Reading Level||Grade 5|
|Category||Diverse Books: LGBTQIA+, Diverse Books: Mental Health & Neurodiversity, Diverse Books: #OwnVoices, Diversity, SEL: A Self-Awareness, SEL: B Self-Management, SEL: D Relationship Skills, Social Emotional Learning|
|Publisher||Lerner Publishing Group|
|Imprint||Carolrhoda Books ®|
|Number of Pages||360|
Author: Jimmy Matejek-Morris
Jimmy Matejek-Morris was born and raised in New Jersey, the middle of five children. He earned undergraduate degrees in Film and English at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York. After graduating, Jimmy moved to Boston, Massachusetts, where he earned an MA in Children's Literature and an MFA in Writing for Children from Simmons College (now University). He currently lives in Massachusetts with his husband Scott and their very well-dressed poodle-Pomeranian named Rudy. His first novel, My Ex-Imaginary Friend, was named a Best Children's Book of the Year by the Children's Book Committee at Bank Street College.
Lerner eSource™ offers free digital teaching and learning resources, including Common Core State Standards (CCSS) teaching guides. These guides, created by classroom teachers, offer short lessons and writing exercises that give students specific instruction and practice using Common Core skills and strategies. Lerner eSource also provides additional resources including online activities, downloadable/printable graphic organizers, and additional educational materials that would also support Common Core instruction. Download, share, pin, print, and save as many of these free resources as you like!
Thirteen-year-old Calvin knows he’s destined to be a star. . . if he can just stop making embarrassing mistakes onstage, like getting stuck on a single line—"Forsooth!"—during the school play. The summer after seventh grade, he’s hoping for a fresh… View available downloads →
Sometimes you just know you’re destined for great things. In Forsooth thirteen-year-old theater kid Calvin knows he’s going to be a star. All he has to do is prove himself as an actor and fix the awkwardness with his friends that started after the play where he got stuck on a single… View →
“Calvin’s panicky narration is easy to empathize with, giving the reader a front-row seat to his anxiety. Heavier themes are balanced with lightheartedness and references that will delight any theater kid. The topic of religion, in particular—Catholicism and Judaism, as experienced via a friend’s bar mitzvah—is approached with both humor and thoughtfulness. Calvin’s first attempts at romance and sometimes toxic friendships result in a lot of drama, but his showstopping antics are a joy throughout.” —The Horn Book Magazine
“A dramatic second-person prologue gives way to Calvin’s sensitive and enthusiastic first-person POV in this funny and joyous ode to creative expression. Matejek-Morris (My Ex-Imaginary Friend) delves into adolescent friendship drama and Calvin’s challenges growing up queer in a religious family, as well as issues of internalized racism, via theatrical hijinks that add levity to the weighty themes.” —Publishers Weekly
“A funny and thoughtful exploration of middle school relationships.” —Kirkus Reviews
“Gives serious treatment to mental health and the challenges of coming out in a religiously restrictive community. Adorkable Calvin makes impressive growth in self-acceptance, and that plot-driving process benefits from supportive characters working through their own challenges. With casual Broadway references and theater as a dominant theme, readers with an existing interest in the performing arts will delight in the story, while those less comfortable in the spotlight will enjoy watching Calvin shine. Forsooth!” — Booklist
“A must-read for the shining stars in your life!” —Adam Sass, award-winning author of The 99 Boyfriends of Micah Summers and Surrender Your Sons
“Forsooth is a heartwarming reminder that we are all the star of our own show—worthy of not just the spotlight, but love. You’ll be rooting for Calvin from start to finish.”—Jason June, New York Times bestselling author of Out of the Blue
“This book is unputdownable! A propulsive, witty, heart-filling read, Forsooth is a story I wish I’d had when I was a kid.”—Emily Barth Isler, author of AfterMath
“Forsooth dives into the confusing collision of faith, friendships, and first crushes with a winning combination of tenderness and laugh-out-loud humor. I fell hard for Calvin Conroy, in all his messy glory, from the very first page. This is a book I wish I could deliver via time machine to my thirteen-year-old self.” —Chad Lucas, author of Thanks a Lot, Universe