Friday, December 9, 2011

Bunheads by Sopihe Flack: Review

By Sophie Flack
Published October 10th 2011 by Poppy
Pick up your copy at B&N, Amazon, or your local indie today!
Synopsis borrowed from Goodreads:

As a dancer with the ultra-prestigious Manhattan Ballet Company, nineteen-year-old Hannah Ward juggles intense rehearsals, dazzling performances and complicated backstage relationships. Up until now, Hannah has happily devoted her entire life to ballet.

But when she meets a handsome musician named Jacob, Hannah's universe begins to change, and she must decide if she wants to compete against the other "bunheads" in the company for a star soloist spot or strike out on her own in the real world. Does she dare give up the gilded confines of the ballet for the freedoms of everyday life?

Darkfallen's thoughts:

While this book was so good, for me, that I finished it in one day; I fear that it may not be as good for others. Here's what I mean...

I trained in ballet for 15 years. I basically learned to walk, was potty trained, and then off the dance school I went at the age of 2. So when I was reading this book, it was more than that. I was seeing this book. I loved the way Sophie Flack walks you through the ballets Hannah is doing step by step. However she uses all of the proper French terms for each step, and nothing more. So I fear that for those out there that have never taken ballet this book may be a bit hard to connect with, or understand even. So while I am whisked away to the land of grand botones, jette's, arabesque's, pas de deux, & lifts in B plus, vividly picturing the ballets unfold in my mind as a read and absorb every word so much so that I find myself marking the steps while cooking dinner, and thinking it's the cutest thing ever that my three year old son is trying to mimic me. (all the while my husband suddenly feels the need to dicuss football with our son. lol) I think that that any person without extensive ballet knowledge might find this story a bit flat and boring.

Again I really, REALLY enjoyed this book, I just think maybe it could have been done slightly different to make it more approachable to a wider audience. I mean after all...a dancer that has time to read a book is a retired one;) I would have liked to see a little more done with the relationship between Hannah & Jacob. Maybe a little less on the actions of ballet, and a little more on the feeling of it and I would say this book would not only have a wider audience, but 5 stars across the board. I guess I was expecting something more like Gail Formans Where She Went where the music careers where the back drop, and the emotions took center stage. Still thanks to years of ballet, and bloody toes to prove this book was a great read for me.

Overall I say if your a dancer this is a must read. I wish I would have been able to read it back when I was consumed by the almost drug like quality that is life inside a ballet company. (Granted I was only at the St. Louis Ballet Company, which is nothing compared to the MBA.) But the message is a good one. There really is a life outside of dance, and sometimes you have to chose between life on stage...and everything else.    




  1. I said the SAME thing! That I loved this book, but I could picture the ballets in my head, and I feared that others wouldn't be able to understand what was being said. Nice review

  2. I'm really curious about this one but I know nothing about ballet so I'm a little hesitant. This cover freaks me out too! o_O

    Xpresso Reads

  3. haven't picked this one up yet, but it's definitely on my wishlist--I was in an actual book store a few weeks ago (*gasp*) and this book totally captured my interest--LOVE the cover, and sounds like a good story...I haven't taken any dance, but I've read a few stories with dance backgrounds, and have taken some French, so I still think I'll give this a try! :)

    plus, now I know who to ask if I don't know what a move is ;)

  4. Yes yes I'll reuse you when you get lost in jetes lol