Saturday, February 1, 2014

Review: The Dancing Master

I expected Julie Klassen's "The Dancing Master" to be a Christian Jane Austen version of the film/musical "Footloose," a musical I really don't care for at all. But although the main conflict in Klassen's book focuses on a small village's unspoken ban on dancing, I found that the story was more about the growth of its various characters than about a rule on dance.

In fact, the characters were all extremely charming, especially leading lady Julia, a flirt constantly seeking the approval from men that she never received from her unpleasant father. Dancing master Alec Valcourt, a true gentleman almost too honorable to be real, falls in love with the young woman. At first, she aims to go against her mother's wishes in seeking out dancing lessons, but as the two interact and secrets come to light, their forbidden romance turns into a wonderful example of how people can help each other grow.

Klassen also includes plenty of revealing and new secrets, circumstances and characters to keep her readers guessing (and staying up until 3 AM to find out how it will all end). My only complaint is that the book starts and ends with a chapter written in first person by Julia, while the rest is written in third person. But the rest of the book is beautifully written with endearing characters and a fantastic story line.

*Disclaimer: I received this book for free in exchange for my honest review of it.

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