Tuesday, May 15, 2012

The Cranes Dance by Meg Howrey

Kate Crane's life is slipping out of focus. She threw her neck out while dancing Swan Lake and needs increasing amounts of medication just to get through the day. She's a soloist with a New York ballet company but for the last few years has danced in the shadows of her sister Gwen. That was before Gwen had a meltdown and quietly went back to their family home in Michigan. Now Kate must deal with the pieces of her life - and Gwen's life - while considering what she wants to do next.

(Spoilers below)

I really enjoyed this book. I've read a few teen books set in the ballet world, but it was a nice change to see a book about a slightly older dancer at a different place in her life. That doesn't mean, though, that Kate has her life all figure out. The physical toll of her work is draining her body and her relationships (or lack of relationships) is draining her emotionally. The shadow that Gwen casts is so huge that it took me a while to realize that she wasn't even really in the novel as a character in person. The book is filled with great details of the ballet world, but it felt like the book was written by a writer who once danced rather than a dancer who writes. The characters are skillfully created and the story builds nicely. This is a great choice for both adults as well as teens who might be looking to read adult books.

Learn more about Meg Howrey at her website.

I received an advance review copy from NetGalley courtesy of Vintage Books/Knopf Doubleday.

Find it at IndieBound.

Read it with:
Bunheads by Sophie Flack
Audition by Stasia Ward Kehoe
Blind Slight by Meg Howrey

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