Author: Sophie Flack
Format: Hardback (ARC from publisher)
Length: 294 pages
Age Range: Late Teen
Rating: 5 Stars
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? -Goodreads
Take a Walk in Her Toe Shoes
Girls the world over have gazed upon the lithe bodies and graceful movements of professional ballerinas of stage and screen with a mixture of awe and envy. Little do these starry-eyes dreamers know of the long hours, sacrifice, blood, sweat, and tears behind the magic of the twinkling lights and tutus.
Sophie Flack's "Bunheads" is a captivatingly honest look into the real world of ballet. Showing the reader that though the dance that is shown to the world may be utter perfection; the lives of those dancing are anything but. There are rivalries, injuries, disorders, friendships, tragedies, and triumphs all seemingly woven from the same delicate threads which secure each dancer into his or her beloved toe shoes.
Ms. Flack not only manages to bring the reader into the world of Hannah Ward, but to make him or her a "fly on the wall" so to speak during moments of her life. It is during these snap-shot moments that we come to realize just how tight the confines of the dance can be on not only the dancer, but also on his or her life. You can dance your life away and be nothing more than just "one of the corps".
Every story has one...and for Hannah, her comes when she meets Jacob, a struggling musician with a quirky smile and a freedom of life that she has never known. Though Hannah loves the dance and the life that it has given her; her relationship with Jacob causes her to open her eyes to the reality of life's bigger stage. Will she be willing to trade in her place in the corps for the spotlight and center stage in her life's dance? Nowhere within this story is Hannah's struggle to find herself more real then during her interaction or in some cases lack thereof with Jacob. This is the part of the book in which she truly comes into her own as a person, and begins to take responsibility for her life's directions
This book is a wonderful example of an author "writing what she knows". I was not aware just how much of herself the authoress has written into her book until I had finished the book and was reading the jacket flap for contact info. The intimacy, truth, love, and meticulous attention to detail exemplified in this book could not have been achieved in any other way.