Anyways, today I thought I would start a new series on my blog. It's basically me reviewing ballet books I've read. This series will probably only pop up randomly, whenever I feel the need to share a ballet book with you. So with that said, let's get into the review.
So if you didn't get it by the title, the book I read is called The Strength of Ballerinas by Nancy Lorenz. It's about a ballerina, Kendra who loves and lives to dance. She eat, sleeps and breathes ballet, much like how I was when I first became serious about ballet. She is preparing for an audition into a company that is affiliated with her ballet school, but when her Dad looses his job she has to leave her beautiful and perfect life in New York City for a mountain life in Napa Valley, California. To make things even worse, she receives a debilitating diagnosis that will only get worse over time. Kendra must choose whether she's going to let her illness control her; or will she control her illness, find a proper ballet studio and be ready to kick butt at the audition.
This book was an easy read. I could have finished it in a day if I didn't have school and exams to work on. Because I read it during school, it took me two days to read. The overall theme of the book very much reminded me of Lurlene McDaniel's books "Last Dance" as well as "A Rose For Melinda" but it was a more mature read. Both of those books are about dancers who get diagnosed with chronic illnesses and how they do their best to overcome that obstacle.
The one thing I really loved about this book in particular was how it shows that dance is a good therapy for special needs kids. That's one of the reasons why I want to be a Dance Movement Psychotherapist. I hope that when I teach dance, it will be open to everyone not just my clients. And I hope that somehow I'll be able to do dance related things with special needs children. You'd be surprised how someone, let's say with autism, can change because of Dance Movement Therapy (DMT).
In the back of the book there are discussion questions for people to answer, if you're in a book club, like I am. I am going to answer a few of the dance related questions for you so I don't spoil the book.
1. Have you ever encountered an obstacle? How did you deal with it?
The biggest obstacle I had (and sorta still have) is my hearing disability. I found out I was half deaf when I was 13. I couldn't count the music so my dance teacher played the music in class extra loud for me so I could feel the beat in the floor. Thankfully, the two ear operations I've had, have helped me immensely with my hearing, even though it is not like normal people.
The hardest part of being half deaf for me was having the two operations because I was absolutely terrified to have surgery. I was beyond convinced I was somehow gonna die in surgery (all thanks to the book/movie My Sister's Keeper). Once the surgeries were over, it was smooth sailing from there on out.
Well obviously, I dance. When I was super serious about ballet I devoted 5 hours daily, 5 days a week to my ballet classes. And then I would be stretching practically all the time. Now, that I am not dancing as much as before, I try to devote an hour of my day to dance. Somedays, it's doing a ballet barre, somedays it's stretching and other days it's cross-training in the gym.
3. Many students have to switch high schools due to a move. Kendra loves her old school in New York but has to readjust to a much larger coed high school in California. What are some problems of attending a new school?
This question is easy for me to answer because I just moved from a JC to a University. I think the hardest part about moving schools is making friends. We all want to feel accepted and it's hard to find the people that just get you. I am still trying to find those people.
4. “Kendra has to sort out which friends are “true blue,” and which ones are false. How do you uncover that truth?”
True blue friends are the ones who stay friends with you no matter what. Whether it's a medical diagnosis, a move, a death in the family or whatever life throws at you, true blue friends are there 110%. False friends are the ones who drop you like flies and quickly befriend someone else to take your place in their "clique".
I hope you all enjoyed this post. If you did, please give this post a +1 on Google+ and leave me a comment below telling me what ballet book I should read and review next. See you later!
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