Julep O'Toole: What I Really Want To Do Is Direct

Overview

The promise of extra credit in English class pushes a nervous Julep to audition for the school play. But after flubbing her tryout, she ends up at the bottom of the list for stage crew. How humiliating! Just as she’s about to quit the play altogether, Julep suddenly finds herself promoted to assistant director. Finally, Julep has found something she’s really good at: leadership. Then, just weeks before the play is set to open, everything comes crashing down. Can Julep find a way...

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Overview

The promise of extra credit in English class pushes a nervous Julep to audition for the school play. But after flubbing her tryout, she ends up at the bottom of the list for stage crew. How humiliating! Just as she’s about to quit the play altogether, Julep suddenly finds herself promoted to assistant director. Finally, Julep has found something she’s really good at: leadership. Then, just weeks before the play is set to open, everything comes crashing down. Can Julep find a way to put her newly discovered talent to work?

Another hilarious and heartwarming adventure starring the spunky middle-grader Julep O’Toole!

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Heidi Quist
Awkward and clumsy Julep O'Toole is devastated, though not surprised, when she fails to land an acting role in her middle school's play. She is, however, still able to earn the extra credit she needs to bring up her English grade by making props. But after a few messy incidents with glue, she realizes she desperately hates papier-mache. With a little help from her friend Trig, she comes up with an excuse to quit, but on her way to tell the director, she lands a new role—as assistant director! She is excited not only about the title but also because she gets to help Danica, the most popular girl in the school, learn her lines and maybe even improve their confusing friendship. True to the expectations of a girls' school story, Trueit includes a pleasant handful of bathroom scenes with secrets and pranks, a grotesque cafeteria worker, and a rude group of popular girls. She also adds a modern appeal with diary entries scattered throughout the narrative, and secret codes to understand the diary. The story ends on a happy note with some semi-traditional twists. The role of the family is minimal and not always positive, with parents who annoy and make food that Julep does not like, and a self-absorbed older sister. Overall, this second book about Julep is a very cute and uplifting book.
School Library Journal

Gr 5-7
In Trueit's third book featuring Julep O'Toole, readers find the sixth grader trying out for the school play in an attempt to earn enough extra credit to pull her English average from a C- to a B-. She isn't sure she wants a part, but she isn't exactly happy when she winds up on the stage crew. An unexpected promotion to assistant director improves things, but just as Julep has warmed up to her new role, the production is canceled. Trueit's strength is in the way in which she shows readers all of the things that Julep doesn't see about herself. The child feels like she can't do anything right, but it's easy to see that something about her sets people at ease and new acquaintances-her sister's new boyfriend, the drama advisor, the evil lunch lady-like and trust her. This extends to Danica, the most popular girl in sixth grade, who struggles both with learning her lines and negotiating her secret friendship with Julep. The protagonist's quest to save the play and Trueit's depiction of the social intricacies of middle school result in a highly readable novel that is real and funny.
—Adrienne FurnessCopyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

Kirkus Reviews
Middle school just makes life tougher in this third installment of Trueit's Julep O'Toole series. This time Julep tries to boost her grades by getting involved in the school play. When she bombs in her audition and winds up on the stage crew, she wants out, but when she's suddenly appointed assistant director, things get interesting. As her wacky friends zone out all around her and even their teacher/director must withdraw, it's left to Julep to try to hold the play together, although Julep, along with most of her friends, can't seem to do anything right. Trueit displays a deft hand for zingy comic writing that easily hits her target audience. Typical middle-school types, including faculty, get just a touch of extra eccentricity in this non-stop romp through insecurity, bravado and sheer panic. Even a bit of insight finds its place amid the slapstick and wit. Pure fun. (Fiction. 8-12)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780525477815
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 3/15/2007
  • Series: Julep O'Toole Series
  • Pages: 160
  • Age range: 8 - 12 Years
  • Product dimensions: 5.76 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.79 (d)

Meet the Author

Trudi Trueit

Trudi Strain Trueit was born and raised in the Seattle, Washington, area and still lives there with her best friend/husband, Bill. She graduated suma cum laude from Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma, and has worked as a television weather forecaster, a news reporter/anchor, a journalist, a media specialist, and has written twenty nonfiction books for young readers. Trudi’s passions are photography, painting, and her three cats (Bernadette, Kira, and Roo). And, yes, she is a middle child.

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