Shadow Dancing Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of Shadow Dancing

Emma Kate Thomas, a teenaged ballerina from the Midwest, gets the chance to move to New York and study, to see the sights and meet new people, to discover life without her parents and love on her own. What makes the book a great read is not only the care and insight with which Pinard exposes Emma and her circle of dancers and friends, making them real and flawed and wonderfully human, as well as the era and setting, but also the fact that Pinard is the type of writer who can toss off a stunning insight such as "But I'd hate to plan my life around a failure of imagination" within a casual conversation. Shadow Dancing reminds us how we got where we are: by dreaming, working, stumbling, learning. It's a beaut of a novel.
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The review of this Book prepared by Shawn Behlen

Emma Kate Thomas, a seventeen-year-old ballerina from a small midwestern conservatory, leaves her parents and dance partner behind when a world-famous director entices her to New York. But her imagined waltz to centerstage turns tango as soon as she arrives. Three male mentors vie to become her partner, each exacting his price, and she forges a family of immigrant women to prop her sagging spirit. As stagelight strikes, Emma Kate sees her shadow, recalls the defining moment of her childhood buried under the patchwork of her parents' love, and rediscovers the "dance" she learned in the heartland.
The review of this Book prepared by Nancy Pinard

Chapter Analysis of Shadow Dancing

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Plot & Themes

Tone of book?    -   upbeat Time/era of story    -   1960's-1970's Life of a profession:    -   dancer Is this an adult or child's book?    -   Adult or Young Adult Book Job/Profession/Status story    -   Yes

Main Character

Gender    -   Female Profession/status:    -   student    -   artist Age:    -   a teen


How much descriptions of surroundings?    -   3 () United States    -   Yes The US:    -   Northeast    -   Midwest Water?    -   Yes City?    -   Yes City:    -   New York    -   dirty, grimy (like New York)    -   dangerous    -   rude people Small town?    -   Yes

Writing Style

Sex in book?    -   Yes What kind of sex:    -   vague references only    -   descript of kissing    -   touching of anatomy    -   impregnation/reproduction    -   Boob talk! Amount of dialog    -   significantly more descript than dialog

Books with storylines, themes & endings like Shadow Dancing

Nancy Pinard Books Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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