Who doesn't need a little summer reading?
And all the better, if the book is written by one of our long-time V.com members, Terez Mertes (Rose). Mertes is a former professional dancer who came to us here at Violinist.com when she began playing the violin 10 years ago, as an adult. Her new book, called Off Balance (Ballet Theatre Chronicles Book 1), takes place in the world of ballet, and its protagonist (like Terez) is an avid classical music fan, which is a thread that runs strong through the story.
I read the book mostly because Terez is my friend and writes very good blogs, but man, this is a page-turner! I was up until 1 p.m. several nights because I just couldn't put it down.
The pursuit of music at a high level is a lot like the pursuit of dance: that heady combination of support, back-stabbing, inspiration and jealousy, all in the service of something that aims for transcendence. Terez's story centers on two dancers, one post-career and one just on the cusp of "making it." These characters are interesting and paradoxical; good people who occasionally still act on bad impulse. Their stories begin separately, illustrating two compelling sides of isolation. On one hand is an administrator, Alice, whose dancing career was forever sidelined by injury, still unable to attend a performance without overwhelming emotion and even tears. On the other is a new dancer to the company, Lana, so talented that the other dancers avoid her, so broke she can barely afford life in her new town, San Francisco. And she's a long way from Kansas, where her family lives and constantly tugs at her feelings of family obligation.
As their stories merge, so do they both emerge from their isolation. They each face some tough demons, both internal and external, and the end is quite satisfying. Five stars! Go read it (for a time, I think you can actually get it free on Kindle) and then help our friend by giving her 5 stars on Amazon and Goodreads (if you like it, of course!)
Now, does anyone have any other books for my summer reading?Tweet
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