Dancing is sixteen-year-old Stephanie's whole life and she cannot imagine her life without ballet. Ballet class is the only place where she can go and forget about everything on the outside and just concentrate on her love for dance. Stephanie's life starts to unravel a bit when a new Russian girl moves into her area and is cast as Sleeping Beauty, a role that everyone agrees should have been Stephanie's since she has been dancing at the studio longer. School is hard, too, because Stephanie doesn't fit in with the other kids. She has a scholarship to go to a ritzy private school where her father is the janitor and just cringes everytime she passes him in the hallway. She doesn't have many friends and cannot seem to understand why the rich kids are so weird. When Vance, an African-American boy about her age, starts coming to her ballet class, she tries to befriend him, but really ends up becoming friends with his Aunt, Miss Winnie, who takes Stephanie under her wing and starts giving her extra lessons on Sundays. This concerns Stephanie's parents who want her to scale back on her dancing so she can prepare to go to college and get a real career. As she comes under more pressure at home, she turns to Miss Winnie to help her turn her dreams of becoming a professional dancer into reality. In the process, she alienates herself from her parents and Vance. Stephanie cannot understand why Vance doesn't love ballet as much as she does and why he doesn't try harder at auditions and for Miss Winnie at practices. As Stephanie struggles to decide which path to follow, help comes to her in surprising places and she finally begins to grow up...
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Dancer was a fun read with a little bit of romantic interest. The characters were well developed and you really understood why Stephanie was acting the way she was and it was easy to remember what life was like at that age. Stephanie did a lot of maturing in the novel and was eventually able to start making the right decisions on her own instead of relying on others to make decisions for her and then getting upset when their choices didn't match her dreams. If you like dancing or ballet, you will really enjoy this novel. I recommend it to anyone looking for a good book about dancing and/or growing up.
The review of this Book prepared by Debbie