Rhythm and Blues
Random House, 2016
pbk., 144pp., RRP $A14.99
Three or four times a week, Eleanor Irvin and her friends attend the Silver Shoes Dance Academy to learn to dance. Jazz, tap, ballet, hip-hop, ballroom, lyrical – whatever the style it’s on offer and each girl has her favourite genre although they are also challenged to go beyond their comfort zone and take on new challenges.
This is particularly true for Riley in Rhythm and Blues when Riley takes on the role of being Miss Caroline’s personal assistant. Having sprained her ankle playing tennis and forced to take a break from dance, Riley finds sitting at home on the couch really frustrating so this new position will at least get her back into that realm again. But trouble is brewing because she finds she has access to private information and power to use it that threatens her friendships. On top of that, she is so determined to get back to dancing that she risks making her injury worse and causing permanent damage.
Similarly, Paige is challenged in Studio Showdown when she is asked to choreograph the Under8/9s’ item for the end-of-year concert with her friend Ellie. The theme is ‘Hollywood glamour” and while Paige is intent on it being jive-based, Ellie has different ideas. Rather than letting the younger dancers shine, she wants to be able to be the star with a support group. It looks like the team is going to be 90% Ellie and 10% Paige and Paige has to dig deep to find the confidence to have her voice heard.
As usual each book has information about the featured genre and a full glossary and because the author is a dancer, dance teacher and choreographer herself you know they have authority.
Miss 9 was especially excited that Santa had managed to get his hands on some advance copies of these two new additions and it is certainly a series that never stays on the shelves. The reserve list for new titles is always long. Even though dance of some sort is the second most popular sport in Australia with over 4 000 000 participants, not all who would like to get the opportunity to dance, so this series continues to fuel their dreams.