What I'm Reading: Get Even by Gretchen McNeil

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Dance of Shadows by Yelena Black

So I danced all my life. Since before I can remember. So I will almost always pick up a dance book when I come across one. I was so excited when I was approved for this one on Netgalley that I started reading it almost immediately.

Here's the summary from Goodreads: Dancing with someone is an act of trust. Elegant and intimate; you're close enough to kiss, close enough to feel your partner's heartbeat. But for Vanessa, dance is deadly – and she must be very careful who she trusts . . . Vanessa Adler attends an elite ballet school – the same one her older sister, Margaret, attended before she disappeared. Vanessa feels she can never live up to her sister's shining reputation. But Vanessa, with her glorious red hair and fair skin, has a kind of power when she dances – she loses herself in the music, breathes different air, and the world around her turns to flames . . . Soon she attracts the attention of three men: gorgeous Zep, mysterious Josh, and the great, enigmatic choreographer Josef Zhalkovsky. When Josef asks Vanessa to dance the lead in the Firebird, she has little idea of the danger that lies ahead – and the burning forces about to be unleashed...

What I Liked: 1) This was kind of...Center Stage meets...I don't know, 666 Park Avenue maybe? I loved how all of the elements of dance, plus the horror side of it came together. 2) The creepy mystery. It starts off being Vanessa's search to find out what happened to her sister, but it gets darker and darker. The twists and turns keep you going and I had no idea who was good and who was bad. 3) The pacing. For me, I thought the pacing, as far as how much was being revealed at what times, was perfect. There were times when I was literally holding my breath and didn't even realize it until I let it out, because I was so enthralled with what was happening. The writing comes to life so vividly that I had to pull myself back into reality to put the book down. 4) The ending. It gets right on the brink of spinning out of control...and then reels everything back in for a wonderfully satisfying end and a great set up for another book. The next book in the series is going to the top of my TBR list, and this one only comes out tomorrow. 5) The characters. I want to talk about the characters for a minute, because you all know how I feel about characters. Usually, the more I get to know them, the better I like the story. Well, Vanessa is an easy character to get to know here. It's her story, and as the MC, we get a lot of information about what's going on inside her head. But she's the only one we really get to know here. Almost everyone surrounding her is so shrouded in mystery that I'm surprised it didn't bother me. But it's completely necessary. Now that I've finished the book, I know that it was so much better that way, because it enabled me to be surprised by all the twists.

What I Didn't Like: It was hard to remember that our MC was only 15. She acted and sounded older than that to me. But that was the only thing.

Overall Thoughts: Prepare yourself for a lot of mystery as you dive into Yelena Black's Dance of Shadows. She's put the world of dance in a whole new light by bringing in a scary occult legend, and packs so much action and drama into it that it's easy to find yourself wandering the halls of the New York Ballet Academy instead of lying on your couch (or wherever you choose to read). Mystery and intrigue abound in this new story from Yelena Black, and I can't wait to pick up my hard copy!

My Rating: 5 shots
Galley provided by NetGalley and Bloomsbury Children's Books in exchange for an honest review!

1 comment:

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