Title: The Midnight Dance
Author: Nikki Katz
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Mystery/Thrillers, Romance
Publisher: Swoon Reads
Publication date: October 17th, 2017
When the music stops, the dance begins.
Seventeen-year-old Penny is a lead dancer at the Grande Teatro, a finishing school where she and eleven other young women are training to become the finest ballerinas in Italy. Tucked deep into the woods, the school is overseen by the mysterious and handsome young Master who keeps the girls ensconced in the estate – and in the only life Penny has never known.
But when flashes of memories, memories of a life very different from the one she thinks she’s been leading, start to appear, Penny begins to question the Grand Teatro and the motivations of the Master. With a kind and attractive kitchen boy, Cricket, at her side, Penny vows to escape the confines of her school and the strict rules that dictate every step she takes. But at every turn, the Master finds a way to stop her, and Penny must find a way to escape the school and uncover the secrets of her past before it’s too late.
“No. He had bigger plans. A grander schee. He’d have the biggest stage imaginable, and his sister would never laugh again.”
To say I’m disappointed is an understatement. I was so anticipating this book ever since I saw the cover, because honestly? It’s freaking gorgeous (just look at it!). And after I read the premise I immediately added to my TBR, because it sounded like something I’d love. It was a thriller about ballerinas, what could go wrong with that? Well, let me tell you: everything.
I was on the verge of DNF it multiple times, because nothing was really grabing me or wooing me to the point I wanted to continue reading it, but I DON’T DNF BOOKS. It’s not in my blood, and I know I need to do it more often, but I can’t help to think maybe the story’d get better in the end. Which didn’t happen to this book, so shame on me.
“A glimmer of empathy caused Penny to glance back over her shoulder. She promised herself that she would save Bianca.
She would save them all.”
My main problem with this story is that the characters were incredibly flat and one dimensional and they don’t really have a development in the entire book. And because of how the story went I really expected some spark to ignite, but nope. They were very lineal til the point they made me unconfortable sometimes.
Out main character was incredibly annoying sometimes. She was the type of character who was whinning all the time but didn’t really do anything about it but let others try to help her solve her problems. It was cringy, and only made me dislike her even more. Also the girls all were supossed to be ballerinas, and I get that there was someting much darker going on, but I hardly saw them dance throughout the story, where in fact, they were in class sometimes. Mostly it was our protagonists thoughts, without any dancing. And I was super sad because I thought we were going to be at least seeing a couple of scenes of them dancing or learning, but they always got cut off.
Also because Penny was focusing on trying to figure out what was going on in that academy, I felt like I was reading the same thing over and over again. There was a romance going on as well, that sometimes I enjoyed but most of the time I didn’t, because it was entirely focused on that and the “mystery”. And because I wasn’t really enjoying the story I was completely engrosed.
“Even though she’d hoped it would happen, and didn’t dare consider the consequences, a small part of her had thought she wouldn’t phantom it past the boundaries.”
But biggest turn off to me was the villain. You know how much I love my villains, and because there was that big of a mystery in the book, I really expected a more developed villain than what I got. To be honest, I was quite disappointed with him. We knew bits about his past, but again, everything was so one dimensional I didn’t feel attached to anyone in the story, neither the villain (WOW, right?). It was just “meh”.
The ending wasn’t as mindblowing as I would have hoped. The whole story was so secretive and giving you as less details and information as possible, that the ending was kind of overwhelming and a bit unecessary, to be honest. Part of me liked it a bit more than the rest, and part of me was detached of that story already.
I did like that it all took place in Italy, because I haven’t read many books set there, but otherwise, it just wasn’t a book for me. It had a very interesting concept and so much potencial, but it was a bit underdeveloped and way too focused on the romance in my opinion.
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