One Perfect Pirouette, by Sherryl Clark

‘You can do it. You know you can.”
Trouble was, I wasn’t sure I could. What if Mrs Calzotti had taught me badly? What if I had a million bad habits to fix? No, that was silly. My absolute best – every time. I focussed totally on Ms Ellergen’s voice, shutting out Mum and my jumbled worries, and placed my feet in first position.

Brynna’s dream is to attend the National Ballet School, and her family is helping her follow that dream. They have all moved to Melbourne so that she can learn from a top teacher and prepare for her audition. But the move isn’t easy. Money is tight, her parents have had to get new jobs and her brother Tam is angry and upset about the move.

As Brynna struggles to fit it at school and at ballet classes, she wonders if the price of pursuing her dream is too high, for herself and her family.

One Perfect Pirouette is a story about following your dreams and, especially, about finding the determination to follow those dreams in spite of the obstacles and challenges which arise. As well as having to work hard to learn the skills required, Brynna must also solve dilemmas of time and space to rehearse, money for lessons, and fitting in to the ballet class. Away from ballet she also faces issues common for most teens, including peer pressure, family conflict and time management. There is a lot happening in her life, but author Sherryl Clark manages to give each area of Brynna’s life due focus, so that none are glossed over.

Whilst ballet fans will enjoy this book, it is not just for them – Brynna’s dilemmas will absorb readers of differing backgrounds.

Likely to appeal to girls aged 10 to 14.

One Perfect Pirouette, by Sherryl Clark
UQP, 2010

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