Book summary: The Rehearsal

2010 BY ELEANOR CATTON

All the world's a stage--and nowhere is that more true than at an all-girls high school, particularly one where a scandal has just erupted. A teacher has had an affair with his underage student, and though her friends pretend to be dismayed, they are secretly curious and jealous. They obsessively examine the details of the affair under the watchful eye of their stern and enigmatic saxophone teacher, whose focus may not be as strictly on their upcoming recital as she implies.

When the local drama school turns the story of the scandal into their year-end show, the real world and the world of the theater are forced to meet. With both performances--the musicians' and the acting students'--approaching, the boundaries between dramas real and staged, private and public, begin to dissolve. THE REHEARSAL is a tender portrait of teenage yearning and adult regret, an exhilarating, darkly funny, provocative novel about the complications of human desire.

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