Friday, January 4, 2013

Dream Chaser by Angie Stanton

Willow is a daredevil and everyone knows it. She is the head cheerleader of her squad and the best flyer of them all. Whenever her coach wants to do a new, risky fly, Willow is the first to volunteer and the first to perfect it.

But when she has a horrible fall that opens her eyes to the dangers she is facing, Willow realizes that she is terrified of flying now. Even just thinking about what she needs to do from 15 feet in the air sucks the breath out of her and she runs the other way.

So after quitting cheerleading and flying, she gets a new opportunity: join the musical production that is directed by a Broadway choreographer. Before cheer, Willow was an amazing dancer, and everyone in her town knows it. So with connections, Willow gets an audition and was able to find enough of that dancer inside of her to pull out a successful audition.

That landed her the lead female role! The only bad part? Her male lead is none other than her ex-best friend Eli, who she used to dance with before she quit 3 years ago. And their parting was not the best, making them hostile toward one another. It's going to be a little difficult dancing with him when neither of them trusts the other.

And it's not the candy and sunshine Willow thought when she got the lead female role. The other female dancers are extremely jealous that an outsider got the lead, so they are not helping Willow learn the new dances or trying to be friends with her.

Also, since she up and quit the cheerleading squad right before Regionals, her friends from the squad aren't talking to her either.

It seems the only person who is taking to her is the new director, Tyson Scott, who is way too gorgeous to be working with a bunch of snobby high schoolers.

Once Willow finally proves that she can sing and dance better than anyone else on stage does she get rid of the tension between everyone and they finally start to perform like a family who can trust one another.

And since Willow and Eli have to get along and get over the hostility that happened 3 years ago, Willow realizes that she might have feelings for him that are more than friendship.

But when an unforeseen event changes part of the play, Willow has to overcome her fear. If she doesn't, it will ruin the whole play and ruin everyone's chances at Broadway.

Can Willow get over her fear and perform the way she's supposed to? Or will the suffocating fear make her betray and disappoint everyone she has come to care about on the stage? Read Dream Chaser by Angie Stanton to find out!

My Thoughts/Reflections
This was a cute novel. I haven't read too many high school stories about dance/musicals, cheerleading or flying, so it was something new for me that I haven't over read before.

Willow is a runner. When things don't go her way, she tends to run to a new scene and completely shuts out the previous failer. And she is a perfectionist - when she is given a task she will do it all night until she has it down pat.

But she could run away from Eli and that past if she wanted to be in the musical, so she was forced to come face to face with it in order to get the lead role.

I could not imagine falling 15 feet in the air to nothing but mat and landing the wrong way, so I completely understand her fear of free falling again after that horrible accident. I got so angry and frustrated with everyone who wouldn't listen to her explain why she could cheer again. The trust was gone and the injury that she got might have healed, but the feeling she had when she fell was like nothing she every experienced before. I don't blame her for quitting cheerleading.

I really liked the way the author described her losing herself to the dance and feeling what the dance represented. I'm not a dancer, but that description helped me understand what dance was like for Willow.

Overall, I really enjoyed this novel. There were times that I rolled my eyes in annoyance or thought something was immature, but overall I think the author did a great job depicting high school trends along with the fear that one gets after a close incident.

I would recommend this to anyone who enjoys musicals or plays and cheerleading, along with overcoming a fear that hits directly home to a person.

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