Monday, February 17, 2014

Dawn Crandall's Review of “The Dancing Master” by Julie Klassen

{My Review}

Although there are quite a few characters who find their way to each other’s hearts by the end of The Dancing Master, this book is not so much a love story. Like the rest of Julie Klassen’s books, there is a lot going on, but instead of a majority of the focus being upon a love-relationship building between the hero and heroine, it is focused on the redemption of a town caught up in twenty years of mysteries, rumors and lies. 

The Dancing Master is also written primarily from the hero’s perspective instead of either a heavier heroine POV or an equal balance between the two... which sort of makes sense when you think of the title. Usually a book might lend to the heroine wondering a bit about the trustworthiness or caliber of character of the hero and have the reader be more sympathetic toward the heroine. This book does it a little backwards, having that the hero is the main character and trying to figure out these things about the heroine. Although this is quite backwards to how most "historical romance" books out there are written, it is still a very well written story.

Its obvious from the differing reviews on Goodreads and Amazon that the average reader might not pick up on these things specifically and end up deciding that they don’t especially like it because it’s so different than what they expect after reading Julie Klassens other books. I hope in my explanation as to why they might be having these reactions to this book readers will see that it isn’t so much that the book/story is written badly, but that it is simply different. 

Julie Klassens The Dancing Master currently has a rating of 3.79 out of 5 stars (from 434 ratings) on Goodreads. I was given a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.


{About the Book from}

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 mastera man her mother would never approve ofbut 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.


{More About Julie Klassen} 

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 has won the Christy Award: Historical Romance for The Silent Governess (2010) and The Girl in the Gatehouse (2011) which also won the 2010 Midwest Book Award for Genre Fiction. Julie and her husband have two sons and live in a suburb of St. Paul, Minnesota.  

Find out more about Julie at

{Other Books by Julie Klassen}

1 comment:

Cathy said...

This book is next on my fiction TBR pile and your review has got me excited to read it! I've been a little sad about all the low reviews, since I love Julie's books.

Love how you describe it:
" is focused on the redemption of a town caught up in twenty years of mysteries, rumors and lies."

Sounds really good! : )