Book Review | Dance of Fire
Title: Dance of Fire by Yelena Black
Genres: YA, Fantasy, Paranormal, Romance
Published by: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC (March 12th, 2015)
All dancers dream of the chance to try out for the Royal Court Ballet Company. Only two dancers from the elite New York Ballet Academy will have this honour. Vanessa is one of them. She dances with grace and elegance, and a fury that is unmatched. Justin – strong, sexy and caring – will be her partner. But the thrill of travelling to London for this once-in-a-lifetime competition is shrouded by their past and the demands of an ancient organisation. The Lyric Elite needs them to win the contest and to infiltrate the Royal Court Ballet in order to seek out a dark society of Necrodancers. Vanessa will dance like she has never danced before, but not for them. Vanessa is there to find her missing sister, Margaret, and she won’t let anything get in the way of that …Fierce rivals, dark forces and hidden motives weave together in a gripping thriller for fans of Black Swan and Cassandra Clare’s Mortal Instruments.
What I Thought
First, you should know that this book is the sequel to Dance of Shadows. You can check out the review I did for that by clicking here. 🙂
I read Dance of Shadows back when it came out in 2013. It wasn’t a super hyped up book, but, of the few bloggers I knew back then, people talked about it. There was definitely some media hype, and as a dancer, I just new I had to get that book. So, after finishing it, it was quite clear there was going to be a sequel. So, I kept waiting, and waiting, for any type of information concerning the next book in the series. Finally, Dance of Fire was quietly released in 2015, straight to paperback, and only available in the UK (I bought my copy from The Book Depository). I’m saying all of this, because I feel like this book is highly underappreciated, and I want to know why there were absolutely no announcements or hype about the release of this book. In fact, the only way I found out about its release is because I had marked it on my to-read shelf on Goodreads, and one day there was a release date on it. That was it. This book was good! Was it the best book I ever read? No. That being said I really did enjoy it, and I cannot figure out why its release is so quiet and shady. Okay, random, mini-rant over; I’m going to talk about the actual content now!
Dance of Fire had a different vibe than book 1, and I think that worked really well for it. In this book, Vanessa is in a new location, with new characters – and a few old ones – and everything just felt very fresh and new. The dancing, as always, was super fun to read about, and I loved how Yelena Black incorporated the paranormal aspect of the novel in the actual dancing. I loved getting to know Vanessa’s mom in this one, because I don’t remember her in Dance of Shadows very much, if at all, too. I also found myself liking Justin’s character a lot more than I remember. I did miss Vanessa’s friends though.
Something I did not necessarily care for was the dual perspective. In this book, it alternates between present day, and Margaret’s diary from 2 years ago. I appreciated the insight from the past, but sometimes things felt a bit disjointed because of it. Overall, this book just did not feel as strong as the first. I also found this book struggling in the same way Dance of Shadows did. The beginning was exciting, and the ending was great, but the middle was a bit lacking at times. I felt like things should have been progressing more, when nothing was really happening.
I really did enjoy the ending though. I thought it really tied the two books together, and wrapped up the mystery well. It also left just enough loose ends open for the series to feel complete, but also stay available for more sequels in the future, if the author decides to do so.
Overall, while I did not enjoy this book quite as much as the first one, Dance of Fire was a very entertaining, mysterious read. I would recommend this series to anyone who is a lover of both dance and the paranormal.
Also, can we just appreciate that gorgeous cover?! *heart eyes*