Ballet lovers will relish the behind-the-scenes look at this land of enchantment.

READ REVIEW

BECOMING A BALLERINA

A NUTCRACKER STORY, STARRING THE DANCERS OF BOSTON BALLET

A young student in the Boston Ballet School lands the plum role of Clara in The Nutcracker through her hard work, determination and talent.

Fiona’s story, told in the first person, unfolds in the months before Boston Ballet’s Nutcracker season, a Christmas holiday fixture. Daily hours of practice and weeks of rehearsal result in a splendid opening-night performance. Fiona lives in Boston with her mother and two sisters, one older and one younger, who also take classes and perform in The Nutcracker. Fortunately, their mother willingly and lovingly supports them. Fiona’s activities with friends at school are of necessity curtailed, but she relishes the camaraderie with the other ballet students and with members of the company. The narration provides an illuminating and detailed picture of the hard work and single-minded dedication that is required. The many full-color photographs help readers see both the beauty of the performance and the strength of mind and body required for ballet. There are some humorous moments, along with a running description of Fiona’s difficulties in hitting the Mouse King with her ballet slipper. The Boston Ballet production is beautifully costumed, providing a feast for the eye for all readers. A glossary of ballet terms would have been helpful.

Ballet lovers will relish the behind-the-scenes look at this land of enchantment. (Nonfiction. 9-14)

Pub Date: Oct. 11, 2012

ISBN: 978-0-670-01392-0

Page Count: 48

Publisher: Viking

Review Posted Online: Aug. 8, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 2012

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A splendid volume for young adventurers.

SURVIVOR KID

A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO WILDERNESS SURVIVAL

Based on her work with middle-school students, Long offers lessons on how to stay healthy and out of trouble while awaiting rescue, the same lessons taught to adults in her survival classes.

Her matter-of-fact, no-nonsense tone will play well with young readers, and the clear writing style is appropriate to the content. The engaging guide covers everything from building shelters to avoiding pigs and javelinas. With subjects like kissing bugs, scorpions, snow blindness and “How going to the bathroom can attract bears and mountain lions,” the volume invites browsing as much as studying. The information offered is sometimes obvious: “If you find yourself facing an alligator, get away from it”; sometime humorous: Raccoons will “fight with your dog, steal all your food, then climb up a tree and call you bad names in raccoon language”; and sometimes not comforting: “When alligators attack on land, they usually make one grab at you; if they miss, you are usually safe.” But when survival is at stake, the more information the better, especially when leavened with some wit. An excellent bibliography will lead young readers to a host of fascinating websites, and 150 clipart-style line drawings complement the text.

A splendid volume for young adventurers. (index not seen) (Nonfiction. 9-14)

Pub Date: May 1, 2011

ISBN: 978-1-56976-708-5

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Chicago Review Press

Review Posted Online: April 5, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15, 2011

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One of those rare thrillers whose answers are even more scarifying than its mysteries.

AFTER ALL I'VE DONE

A middle-aged woman sidelined by a horrific accident finds even sharper pains waiting on the other side of her recuperation in this expert nightmare by Hardy, familiar to many readers as Megan Hart, author of All the Secrets We Keep (2017), etc.

Five months ago, while she was on her way to the hospital with an ailing gallbladder, Diana Sparrow’s car hit a deer on a rural Pennsylvania road. When she awoke, she was minus her gallbladder, two working collarbones (and therefore two functioning arms), and her memory. During a recovery that would’ve been impossible without the constant ministrations of Harriett Richmond, the mother-in-law who’s the real reason Diana married her husband, Jonathan, Diana’s discovered that Jonathan has been cheating on her with her childhood friend Valerie Delagatti. Divorce is out of the question: Diana’s grown used to the pampered lifestyle the prenup she’d signed would snatch away from her. Every day is filled with torments. She slips and falls in a pool of wine on her kitchen floor she’s sure she didn’t spill herself. At the emergency room, her credit card and debit card are declined. She feels that she hates oppressively solicitous Harriett but has no idea why. Her sessions with her psychiatrist fail to heal her rage at her adoptive mother, an addict who abandoned her then returned only to disappear again and die an ugly death. Even worse, her attempts to recover her lost memory lead to an excruciatingly paced series of revelations. Val says Diana asked her to seduce Jonathan. Diana realizes that Cole, a fellow student in her watercolor class, isn’t the stranger she’d thought he was. Where can this maze of deceptions possibly end?

One of those rare thrillers whose answers are even more scarifying than its mysteries.

Pub Date: Nov. 10, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-64385-470-0

Page Count: 310

Publisher: Crooked Lane

Review Posted Online: Aug. 19, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 2020

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During the Great Depression, women's ice-hockey teams across Canada fought an uphill battle to scrape together enough money...

QUEENS OF THE ICE

In the 1930s, the Canadian female ice-hockey team called the Rivulettes dominated the ice.

During the Great Depression, women's ice-hockey teams across Canada fought an uphill battle to scrape together enough money to play. From 1931-1940, the Preston Rivulettes, led by Hilda Ranscome, overwhelmed all other teams, capturing the national title in the four years that they could afford to travel far enough to compete for it. With the pressure of the war, and because they were no longer capturing fan enthusiasm since they always won, the Rivulettes disbanded in 1942. After the war, the culture had changed, and women’s ice hockey nearly disappeared until a recent rebirth. This effort describes in detail many of the key games the team played over that decade and the way that their remarkable record has been largely ignored by the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto. Though the book effectively captures the scrappy nature of the games (with numerous penalties in each for high sticking and fighting), disappointingly, it lacks any significant biographical information on team members. Only a couple are very briefly sketched. Readers will wonder what made this team so great; more information about the players might have provided key insights.

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 2011

ISBN: 978-1-55277-721-3

Page Count: 136

Publisher: James Lorimer

Review Posted Online: July 20, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 2011

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