Dance Of Shadows


How did I get it?:
Netgalley, thanks to Bloomsbury Publishing


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 Justin, 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 .


I was immediately drawn to this story due to the beautiful cover. I know, I know you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, but most of the time.. you do! I’m glad I don’t give out stars on my blog, just thoughts because I’d really have trouble trying to rate this book. I loved it and was drawn in right from the start, but some parts fell short for me.

I absolutely love dance and when I watch ballet I’m usually swept away by the emotion of it all, so to find a book based on dance made me very happy indeed. Yelena Black does not assume that the reader will know about ballet. Instead she weaves such beautiful descriptions of the dance to describe how the dancer is moving and feeling. This was one of my favourite things about the book.

The story begins to pick up pace when the central character Vanessa, is picked to play The Firebird, the principal role in the ballet at her ballet school. This role doesn’t come without trepidation though. The other girls cast in it (including Vanessa’s sister) have all disappeared. The main reason for Vanessa going to the school was in order to find her sister! I was intrigued by the mystery surrounding the role, but have to admit.. I did wonder why on earth a young girl’s parents would let their daughter go to a school that their other daughter never came back from?!

Vanessa’s friends were great and I wish I had learned more about them, although there is to be a sequel to this book so hopefully my wishes will be answered! Vanessa was interesting character, one I’m not quite sure if I liked. She seemed quite naïve to begin with but I began to warm to her as the story went on.

The plot is very original (aside from the love triangle going on!) and kept me glued to the pages with the twist and turns. I didn’t expect the paranormal aspect of the book, but I think it worked really well. The ending tied up enough of the story for it to be a stand-alone book, but it also left great scope for it to continue. I really enjoyed it and I’ll be looking out for the sequel.

Would I recommend it?:
Of course!

Reading next:
Undone- Cat Clarke

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