Once in a while I find a book that is difficult to get into and I have to force myself to read it to the point where I finally start to enjoy the books. This was definitely the case with The Dancing Master written by Julie Klassen. From the book description, the story sounded interesting and it was set during the regency era that I love so much. Because the Bronte sisters and Jane Austen are large influences for Klassen I was looking forward to the book.
Julia Midwinter is restless. She longs to leave her boring village of Beaworthy and see the world. She feels stifled under her mother’s constant criticism and concern. Alec Valcourt has just moved to Beaworthy with his mother and sister to flee a scandal that occurred in London. Alec is a Dancing and Fencing Master but has not been made aware of the twenty year old unwritten law that no one in Beaworthy dance. Can he convince the townspeople that it is all right to dance. Will he lose his heart to the beautiful Julia Midwinter who is above him in station?
The main characters in this books weren’t my favorite, especially Julia. She seemed spoiled and unwilling to change. Alec Valcourt was just okay. While both characters seemed to be developed pretty well, it seemed the supporting characters, the Allens, John Desmond and even Alec’s family were more interesting than the two main characters. The book did start to pick up about halfway through but the story was predictable and seemed to drag a little.
Overall, I would give this book two out of five stars.
***Harvest House Publishing provided me with a free eCopy of this book in exchange for an honest and fair review. I was not compensated in any way for either a negative or a positive review.