Nettie Delaney has just been accepted into a the prestigious Duke’s Academy for the Performing Arts—the very same school her superstar mother attended. But after a less-than-ideal audition and ironic rendition of “I’m Not Afraid of Anything,” Nettie has her work cut out for her to prove she deserves her place at Duke’s—and everyone is watching, especially the oh so intimidating Cecile Duke herself. To make matters worse, Nettie hasn’t been able to sing a single note since her mother died. Whenever she tries, she can’t seem to force a single note. But if Nettie’s going to survive a demanding first year and keep her place in a highly coveted program, she’ll have to work through her grief and deliver a show-stopping performing or face expulsion.
Things are starting to look up for Nettie, however, when one day she stumbles upon a mysterious piano player in an empty studio after class. Hidden safely behind a curtain, Nettie just might be able to summon the courage to find her voice. But will the pressure and anxiety of performing away from her mystery pianist come scare away her voice for good?
A moving story all about finding and claiming your voice and not throwing away your shot, Vanessa Jones’s well-crafted journey of grief and healing will pull readers along with its strong narrative voice and satisfying sense of mystery. Musical theater aficionados and fans of the performing arts are sure to enjoy this touching story of self-confidence.
Get a sneak peek into Nettie’s story with this excerpt. Check out these discussion questions after reading, and get to know author Vanessa Jones and her inspiration for this touching story in our author Q&A.
“Anglophiles, music and theater nerds, and those looking for some classic will-they-won’t-they romance will all find something to enjoy here. Jones writes her subject matter authentically, with obvious passion to balance the professional arts’ not-so-pretty struggles…. A touching portrait of healing after loss.” —Kirkus Reviews
“Jones’ novel has the expected Fame vibes that will delight any reader who loves stories of aspiring young stars learning their craft, but its exploration of Nettie’s complexities makes the story unique…. Jones offsets the narrative’s weightier moments with light and quirky ones, making it a fast read with staying power.” —Booklist
Sing Like No One’s Listening debuts September 1st at your local library, indie bookstore, or Barnes & Noble. And don’t forget to check out the rest of our brand-new Fall 2020 titles as well as our picture books and middle grade titles coming to Peachtree this season in paperback!