Monday, July 27, 2015

Review: Second Position by Katherine Locke

Rating: 5 Cups of Coffee 
Goodreads' Book Description:
Four years ago, a car accident ended Zedekiah Harrow’s ballet career and sent Philadelphia Ballet principal dancer Alyona Miller spinning toward the breakdown that suspended her own. What they lost on the side of the road that day can never be replaced, and grief is always harshest under a spotlight...

Now twenty-three, Zed teaches music and theatre at a private school in Washington, D.C. and regularly attends AA meetings to keep the pain at bay. Aly has returned to D.C. to live with her mother while trying to recover from the mental and physical breakdown that forced her to take a leave of absence from the ballet world, and her adoring fans.

When Zed and Aly run into each other in a coffee shop, it’s as if no time has passed at all. But without the buffer and escape of dance—and with so much lust, anger and heartbreak hanging between them—their renewed connection will either allow them to build the together they never had... or destroy the fragile recoveries they've only started to make. 

Natasha's Experience: 
I have filed this story under my favorites as a “very important and critical story that needs to be read.” To be honest, I have no idea what I want to say about this book; I feel like using all of the words would be best, but that wouldn’t make much sense. SECOND POSITION brings to light the utmost importance of therapy, mental health and recovery. As a psych grad, I loved that and felt like this story was incredibly worded, poetic, beautiful, and so very real.

“Well is a work in progress. Recovery, from any of these things, isn’t an event. It’s a journey.”

Mental health is a topic in the New Adult genre that isn’t really given a prominent role in a story (at least in my opinion!) Maybe I’m just not reading the stories with this theme, but I’m inexplicably happy that SECOND POSITION exists and that I've finally read it.

Zed and Aly are best friends who work so well together; they really understand each other on a cellular level. They dance with their souls and grow up together with ballet as a bonding force in their friendship-turned-relationship.

“We always sought different things from art. I sought peace. He sought salvation.”

When tragedy strikes, ballet is pushed to the side and reality shakes up their world. Both Aly and Zed end up losing more of themselves than they thought possible, making it incredibly difficult to find any sort of silver lining in their now screwed up lives.

“I used to move gracefully. I used to know the word grace to the center of my bones. Now I seek it every day and fall short, inevitably, every day. I lost grace.”

Aly and Zed separate for years, barely existing without each other. Zed loses everything he fought his whole life for – Aly, ballet and happiness. Aly loses her sanity, her love and her ability to start over, always living in the past, reliving the worst day of her life.

“People think that they’ve felt heavy things, but the heaviest things are the things in our own heads. I know this. I feel this.”

Without giving too much away about the story and the lives that Aly and Zed lead after the accident, know that this isn't just a New Adult romance; this is a story about loss, the brutality of grief on the human psyche and the overwhelming feeling of moving on. Expect love, real-life situations and an incredibly poetic take on the harshness of disabilities -- both on the mind and body.

Links: Amazon US | Amazon CA | Amazon UK | Barnes & Noble | Kobo 

About Katherine Locke

Katherine Locke lives and writes in a very small town outside of Philadelphia, where she's ruled by her feline overlords and her addiction to chair lattes. She writes about that which she cannot do: ballet, time travel, and magic. When she's not writing, she's probably tweeting. She not-so-secretly believes most stories are fairy tales in disguise. She can be found online at and on Twitter: @bibliogato. 

Turning Pointe (District Ballet Company #0.5) -- available now, FREE on ebook retailers
Second Position (District Ballet Company #1) -- available now
Finding Center (District Ballet Company #2) -- coming August 17th, 2015

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