Thursday, February 14, 2013

Blog Tour Review: Dance of Shadows by Yelena Black

Title: Dance of Shadows
Author: Yelena Black
Publisher: Bloomsbury
Age Group: Young Adult
Category: Paranormal, Mystery
Release date: February 14th, 2013
Pages: 447 (eGalley)
Rating: 3 out of 5
Source: Netgalley
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Dancing with someone is an act of trust. Elegant and intimate; you're close enough to kiss, close enough to feel your partner's heartbeat. But for Vanessa, dance is deadly – and she must be very careful who she trusts.

Vanessa Adler attends an elite ballet school – the same one her older sister, Margaret, attended before she disappeared. Vanessa feels she can never live up to her sister's shining reputation. But Vanessa, with her glorious red hair and fair skin, has a kind of power when she dances – she loses herself in the music, breathes different air, and the world around her turns to flames.

Soon she attracts the attention of three men: gorgeous Zep, mysterious Justin, and the great, enigmatic choreographer Josef Zhalkovsky. When Josef asks Vanessa to dance the lead in the Firebird, she has little idea of the danger that lies ahead – and the burning forces about to be unleashed . . .

Vanessa decides to follow in her sister's footsteps and attend school at the New York Ballet Academy.  Unfortunately, the school hasn't always held the best memories for the family, especially since Vanessa's older sister, Margaret, went missing a few years back.  This is the main reason that Vanessa chose to leave home, with the intent to find her.  While she's there, she notices some odd behavior that may lead to the truth behind what happened to Margaret during her Freshman year.

I enjoyed the first half of the story, especially the introduction of each unique character and the great descriptions that helped me visualize the school and the dances performed.  Even the mystery was intriguing, but I got a little lost once everything began to play out.  At first I loved the darkness of the tone the author was trying to set.  Something bad obviously happened to each of the prima ballerinas before Vanessa arrived, but it's nearly impossible to figure out what.  Eventually, things begin to unravel before the reader's eyes, but what disappointed me was that a few important questions never get answered.  This is only the first book in a series, so there's always hope for clarification in the next installment.

The author really knows how to play with your emotions, especially when it comes to each of the characters.  You never really know who is behind what, if they can be trusted or not.  This makes each of these characters pretty strong, but you can tell who is more important than the rest, which will make it easier to predict who will play the biggest role behind the mystery of each girl's disappearance.

Overall, Dance of Shadows was entertaining with awesome visuals and strong characters.  The paranormal aspects threw me off a little, but it was an intriguing idea nonetheless.  This book will be enjoyable for who find interest in dance and the occult.

Other reviews:
-Hysteria by Megan Miranda
-Also Known As by Robin Benway


  1. Great review! I've been kind of iffy about this book. At first I thought it sounded AWESOME but after reading a few reviews I became kind of wary.

    I'm glad to hear that Dance of Shadows has a big 'emotions' side, because I'm all about emotions. :P

  2. I'm still hoping to enjoy this one. I do love dance, and reading creepy occult stories, but questions being left unanswered...that usually really bugs me. Great honest review!

  3. After reading your review, I want to read this book already.