Against the backdrop of an intriguingly dark suburban Chicago, a teen dancer struggles with her past.
Seventeen-year-old Theo Cartwright has a passion for ballet and a penchant for falling for the wrong guy. She also has a tendency to starve herself when reality feels beyond her control, and unfortunately for Theo, life has dealt her more than her fair share of blows. Theo appears to be on relatively sure footing now. She’s eating. She’s supported by two fiercely loyal best friends and by her loving parents. And her dream of becoming an elite dancer is on the brink of coming true. Yet when her best friend, Donovan, suddenly returns four years after disappearing, Theo is forced to confront old demons. It’s an intriguing premise, and debut author Colbert does a commendable job creating authentic teen characters that readers will recognize from the halls of their own high schools. Unfortunately, while there is enough here to entertain, the story never reaches its full potential. References to Theo’s struggles with anorexia are surprisingly and disappointingly lacking in emotion. Ditto for her relationship with Donovan. Theo’s a textbook anorexic, almost to the point of cliché, but never are readers given the opportunity to feel her desperation. And while there are flashbacks aplenty, there are surprisingly few that shed light on the deep connection Theo and Donovan presumably once shared.
This is a novel that ultimately misses the…point. (Fiction. 14-18)