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Dance of Shadows by Yelena Black

Dance of Shadows by Yelena BlackA review by Elizabeth Manthos

Dance of Shadows follows a story of ballet, drama, intrigue and the paranormal. It follows the story of Vanessa Adler, a ballerina who has been accepted into the prestigious New York Ballet Academy, the same academy her older sister Margaret attended before she disappeared, but naturally Vanessa feels she can never live up to her sisters reputation.

Vanessa is a powerful dancer; dancing is not something she’s passionate about but something she does with power and grace. She loses herself in the steps and in the music and the world around her begins to change. Her remarkable dancing and power attracts the attention of three men, not all of them with the best intentions: the drop dead gorgeous Zep, the dedicated choreographer Josef and the mysterious Justin.

When she’s asked to dance the lead in The Firebird, Vanessa has no idea of the danger she is putting herself in, especially when her older sister Margaret had danced the same role.

I started this novel in the morning and finished it the same night. It has been a while since a novel has kept me enthralled with its plot, the twists and the characters to have me finishing a novel in a day, but this one did.

I love ballet and everything to do with it. This novel was perfect in the way it captured the ballet, the characters and their dancing. Each character was different in their own right. You have your dancers that want it more than anything, the ones with natural talent, the ones that have the body image issues and much more.

My only gripe with the novel was towards the end: Vanessa was starting to get a little annoying by not listening to other people. I found myself getting frustrated with her inability to trust anyone but the one person she thinks is telling the truth.

Dance of Shadows had the right amount of thrill, mystery and a little humor. With a good original storyline and an amazing cover, it’s hard not to devour this book in one hit. I thoroughly enjoyed it and would recommend it to those that like a good YA novel with a little bit of thrill, a little paranormal and a lot of mystery.

Nalini is an award-winning writer and artist as well as managing editor of Dark Matter Zine.



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