All theater romances are tragedies. Ella Blythe knows this. Still, she cannot help but hope her own story may turn out different than most–and certainly different than the tragic story of the Ghost of Craven Street Theater. Yet as she struggles to maintain her tenuous place in the ever-shrinking ballet company, win the attentions of principal dancer Philippe, and avoid company flirt Jack, Ella cannot deny the uncanny feeling that her life is mirroring that of the dead ballerina.
Is she dancing ever closer to the edge of her own tragic end? Or will the secrets that are about to come to light offer release from the past?
Mystery and romance make the perfect dance partners in this evocative story from fan-favorite Joanna Davidson Politano.
This was definitely my favorite of the author’s books so far–I loved the romance, as well as Ella’s personal journey. I could easily relate with her: she’s doing what she loves (dancing), but somewhere along the line, joy has become second to the hard work of being the best she can be. And when one loses that joy, that leads to burnout, even–or especially–when doing something that one loves. Ultimately she learns that chasing perfection makes her a slave to the ballet, but when she dances for her Heavenly Father, she finds freedom and joy.
This is book I’d read again just to catch all the foreshadowing and hints I missed before the big reveal in the end–and then maybe read it again, knowing even better what to look for. Again, I loved the romance–just something about it struck the right chord in me, though it is secondary to Ella’s personal journey and the search for answers about her mother. I wouldn’t call it a suspense, though there is a mystery and touch of danger. In terms of setting, it was a new era for me: the 1830’s, during the Romantic period, before en pointe was an accepted part of ballet. It was beautifully written and an overall delight.