Thursday 9 April 2015

Book Review - Dance of Shadows

Title: Dance of Shadows
Author: Yelena Black
Series: Dance of Shadows (Book 1)
Publisher: Bloomsbury Childrens
Release Date: 12 Feb. 2013
ISBN-13: 978-1408829974

Vanessa doesn’t believe that her sister is a runaway. She wouldn’t leave her family behind without saying a word. The only way Vanessa can discover the truth behind her mysterious disappearance is to follow in Margaret’s footsteps, but to do so she risks her sanity and maybe even her life . . .

Vanessa Adler is one of the talented few to get a place at the acclaimed New York Ballet Academy. Between backbreaking rehearsals for the school’s production of The Firebird she desperately tries to find out what happened to her sister before she vanished. There are rumors that the pressure of performing the lead role, the same role Vanessa is now rehearsing for, drove her mad. Other girls have gone missing too. Can the role be cursed? Vanessa’s new relationship with leading-man Zep only seems to complicate things further. What is he hiding from her and can she really trust him?

My Review
This book has caught my eye a number of times over the years but I never fully picked it up, but last week I was out on the mobile library and when we stopped for lunch in the middle of the countryside I realised I had forgotten my book so I searched the shelves and this was there. I decided to pull it down and give it a go. I've always rather liked dance themed books, for some reason ballet especially appeals (I have never done ballet but i like to read about it), So I settled down with my sandwich and this book and decided to give it a go.
Within the first five or six pages I was intrigued and interested in knowing more and that feeling only grew the more I read. In that 1 hour break I managed to read almost 100 pages, and I couldn't wait to read more. I brought it home with me and finished it that evening and the next morning (neglecting coursework I probably should have been doing, hehe)
I just could not put this book down I had to know what was going on, where Vanessa's sister was and who was really on her side. I kept changing my mind and just couldn't decide. However I did figure out who would betray her before it was revealed so my intuition is still working right. 
All the way through this book has the feel of a paranormal mystery without actually involving monsters or demons etc. I really like that with a book, those that can feel abnormal and create that atmosphere without having to shove it down your throat. It just adds to the feel of the book. But then it's like someone flipped a switch and in the last 70 or so pages the book goes totally paranormal, like off the chart crazy. We have legends of a dance that can summon demons and then suddenly we have students being possessed, teachers summoning spirits, and all at once everything is about the idea of the 'necrodancers', which whilst a slightly cool idea seemed a little bit forced and I didn't really agree with it. The ending just felt a little rushed and mixed up. 
Overall though the book was very good and I am intrigued enough to read the next book (in fact I've already ordered it at the library, asking them to by a copy for their stock) and I want to find out if Vanessa can finally find her sister and what will happen to them all next, but it wasn't the ending I was expecting.
Overall a very addictive read with some very good moments that will just keep you flicking the pages, but it wasn't quite what I was expecting.

My Rating

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