Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Audition, by Stasia Ward Kehoe

by Stasia Ward Kehoe
Viking Juvenile
Released October 13, 2011

When high school junior Sara wins a coveted scholarship to study ballet, she must sacrifice everything for her new life as a professional dancer-in-training. Living in a strange city with a host family, she's deeply lonely-until she falls into the arms of Remington, a choreographer in his early twenties. At first, she loves being Rem's muse, but as she discovers a surprising passion for writing, she begins to question whether she's chosen the right path. Is Rem using her, or is it the other way around? And is dancing still her dream, or does she need something more? This debut novel in verse is as intense and romantic as it is eloquent.

This is the second book in my entire history of reading that was written in free verse, unless you count actual books of poetry - which I don't. For one, the books of poetry were always for school and absolutely bored me to death.. not like this book at all. Something else that has absolutely bored me to death all of my life is dance.. which is not like this book at all. If you know me in real life, then you're probably cracking up at my last statement of hate toward dance.. considering my husband's minor in college was dance and he absolutely LOVES it. Talk about opposites attract! Any way, my point is that comparing either one of these things to this book would do this book an injustice. However, not telling these things would also be its own sort of injustice considering how much I loved this book, despite the two things listed above.

There are so many good things about this book that I guess I should start with the bad. Well, there is no bad.. which is kind of a bad thing in itself. Why? As a book reviewer, I feel as though I should point out the bad with the good and, if I don't, I feel as though I may not be doing my job well enough - critically enough. To be honest, there was nothing in this book that gave me pause or made me think it's something that should be pointed out. I've even gone and read a ton of other reviews to see if there's something I agree with, and I came up completely empty-handed. So, I apologize for that.

Now, let's get to some of the good. Sara is the best. I think I might have a slight girl crush on her. She's an amazing protagonist that is completely driven by her passion and is incredibly strong inside and out. I love that when she comes upon bumps in the road, she doesn't whine or cry or turn into a blubbering pile of blubbering goo or a damsel-in-distress.. she hits the bump dead on, sucks up the bad and moves on with more determination. Even though she is a strong character, she grows and gets stronger throughout the story. Love it. Now... Rem. Hate to admit it, but I kind of turned into a sucker for him and his douche-tastic ways. Honestly? I don't think he's a horribly bad guy, but then again maybe that's the denial talking? He had his nice moments and I can definitely see why a girl would go for him. Definitely a charmer. Some of the characters in the book touched my heart as well, especially the other dancers and their struggle to be the 'best'. I even found the dancing aspects of this book interesting, and I didn't think that was possible.

I know I've mentioned it before, but Kehoe's writing in verse is... spellbinding. It really pulls you in from the very beginning and you'll be lucky if you can detach yourself from it at all through any part of the story - or unlucky, considering how you see it. This was a one-sitting read for me and it was definitely worth the few hours of sleep that I missed because of it. If you like verse, you'll fall in love with this book. If you don't, you'll still like this book. If you hate dance, you'll still like this book. It's just THAT good.

PS: Don't forget about the Vlog that Stasia did the other day for my blog about writing in verse, as well as details about entering her contest for some fabulous Audition-related prizes. You can see all of that here.

Source: Author

Buy The BookAmazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | IndieBound


Jesse said...

I had no idea this book is written in verse! I've been waiting to get my hands on this one... I'm glad you enjoyed it so much!

Shilpa Mudiganti said...

This is a great review. It is tempting enough to read the book! I love dancing, though I am not a big fan of poems. They are beautiful for sure but I dont get most of them! lol!

Unknown said...

Wow! Awesome review! I'm definitely gonna give this book a look! : )
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