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Saturday, January 18, 2014

The Dancing Master Review!!!

The Dancing Master by Julie Klassen

Book Description:
Finding himself the man of the family, London dancing master Alec Valcourt moves his mother and sister to remote Devonshire, hoping to start over. But he is stunned to learn the village matriarch has prohibited all dancing, for reasons buried deep in her past.

Alec finds an unlikely ally in the matriarch's daughter. Though he's initially wary of Julia Midwinter's reckless flirtation, he comes to realize her bold exterior disguises a vulnerable soul---and hidden sorrows of her own.

Julia is quickly attracted to the handsome dancing master---a man her mother would never approve of---but she cannot imagine why Mr. Valcourt would leave London, or why he evades questions about his past. With Alec's help, can Julia uncover old secrets and restore life to her somber village . . . and to her mother's tattered heart?

Filled with mystery and romance, The Dancing Master brings to life the intriguing profession of those who taught essential social graces for ladies and gentlemen hoping to make a "good match" in Regency England.

Purchase a copy:

About the author: Julie Klassen loves all things Jane---Jane Eyre and Jane Austen. A graduate of the University of Illinois, Julie worked in publishing for sixteen years and now writes full time. She is a three-time Christy Award winner and a 2010 Midwest Book Award winner for Genre Fiction. Julie and her husband have two sons and live in a suburb of St. Paul, Minnesota.

Learn more about Julie at:

My Opinion:
Footloose in Regency England!  LOL!  This was my first Julie Klassen and I LOVED it!!!  She made it intriguing from the start.  It was nicely paced with, not necessarily lulls, but there were places I could set it down and pick it up again later.  Which was great since I do have to sleep! :D  From the prologue this book grabbed me and took me on a great story with twists and surprises!  Just when I though I knew what was coming Julie threw more twists in!  This plot REALLY has a footloose feel all the way through, which I loved, with characters and personalities reflecting those of the movie.  But it is also different enough to stand on it's own feet with slight differences to fit into the time.  I LOVE the spiritual lessons and messages and the end of this book is awesome!  As a matter of fact, though I enjoyed the book as a whole, the last few chapters were my favorite and really made this book for me!  I would have liked a little more background of the dances, but I loved the way Julie described them.  For example there is a sword dance mentioned. but I would have liked it if she went further into the history of why it was done and how it came about...but maybe that's just me... The characters are fantastic, from characters you immediately love, to those you grow to enjoy, and then there are certain characters that make it hard to turn the other cheek.  I love how Julie ties them all together and wraps up the end.  The epigraphs at every chapter were great and added another element to the book!  It's made my Favorite Books list!!!  P.S. I also must compliment Karen Schurrer for her editing of this book; she did a fabulous job!

Songs: "Amazing Grace (My Chains Are Gone)" by Chris Tomlin,
"Rock Of Ages" by Mike Curb Congregation
"Christ The Lord Is Risen Today" by Mike Curb Congregation,
"Traditional Hornpipe 138" by Ellery Klein & Ryan Lacey, 
"Two Hornpipes (Tortuga)" by Hans Zimmer, 
"The Sailors Hornpipe" by Whistling Tom, 
"Hornpipe from Water Music Suite" by George Frideric Handel, George Szell,
"Foursome Reel" The Auld Reekie Scottish Dance Band,
"Highland Reels" by The Riverside Ceilidh Band,
"The Highland Wedding." by Caledonian Strathspey & Reel Society,
"North Highland Reels #18 and #21 / Nine Pint Coggie /" by Sandy King Laura Risk,
"Oranges And Lemons" The Rainbow Collections,
"Mozart, Minuet for Harpsichord K05" by Musica da Camera Orchestra,
"For The Beauty Of The Earth" performed by BarlowGirl

Matthew 5:23-24

*I received this book for the purpose of reviewing it.  This is no way affected my opinion and the above are my true thoughts about The Dancing Master!

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