Friday, March 08, 2013

Review: Audition by Stasia Ward Kehoe


Title: Audition
Author: Stasia Ward Kehoe
Publisher: Viking Juvenile
Release date: October 13th 2011
Pages: 458
Genre: Young Adult contemporary romance
Source: Bought
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Once you've been chosen, what step can you take...?
Seventeen-year-old Sara's dream of becoming a star ballerina is challenged when she falls for Remington, an older choreographer. Instead of success onstage, she becomes Rem's muse, which is a future she never considered--and one that threatens to break her heart.
My rating: 2 out of 5 stars

Although it sounded great, Audition ended up being a disappointing read for me. Verse novels are always hit or miss for me, and this one just turned out to be a miss. I don't even know why; verse sometimes works for me and sometimes doesn't, and in this case, it didn't. The writing style felt awkward, with unnatural transitions from line to line, and it just didn't flow the way I wanted it to. That made it really hard to get into the story.

Other than the writing, the main character is the real reason Audition didn't work for me. I couldn't connect with her because we got so little insight into her motivations and decision-making, and I never felt like I got to know her as a person. It bugged me how she kept going back and forth between wanting to stick with dance and wanting to leave that world behind and focus on academics and whining about it. I know it's because she's lonely and frustrated, but her immaturity just bugged me so, so much. Especially her stupidity about the whole Remington thing... God, I just wanted to slap Sara throughout the novel.

The secondary characters were very meh, too. I didn't feel like I got to really know them, either - they're all just personifications of one idea. There's the other dancers, Sara's classmates, her friends from back home, but none of them seemed like real people to me. An then there's Remington, who is the stupidest, most frustrating... blegh. Just no.

Another thing that bugged me were the dance terms. I guess it's realistic, since we're supposed to be reading a dancer's unfiltered thoughts. But there were so many of them, and they don't mean anything to me, so they were just annoying and boring to me. They gave me no insight into the world of dance; they were just random French words to me. I know it's hard but I've read other dance books that made it possible for me to understand and still seemed realistic.

The ending seemed too abrupt to me, and I didn't get Sara's motivations for the decision she ends up making. We don't know enough about her interests and goals - I have no idea what she's planning on doing after the end of the novel.

Luckily, Audition is a quick read, so it didn't have enough time to piss me off even more. But, really, other than that, I just didn't really enjoy any aspect of it. Audition felt underdeveloped and, in parts, just strange, to me, and I can't really recommend it.

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