Today I have wonderful Young Adult Book Review!

Thanks so much to The Novl #NOVLNation #LBYRPartner for gifting me with, The Other Side Of Perfect

Genre: Young Adult Contemporary
Publishing date:  May 11th, 2021

Alina Keeler was destined to dance, but then a terrifying fall shatters her leg — and her dreams of a professional ballet career along with it. 

After a summer healing (translation: eating vast amounts of Cool Ranch Doritos and binging ballet videos on YouTube), she is forced to trade her pre-professional dance classes for normal high school, where she reluctantly joins the school musical. However, rehearsals offer more than she expected — namely Jude, her annoyingly attractive castmate she just might be falling for.

But to move forward, Alina must make peace with her past and face the racism she experienced in the dance industry. She wonders what it means to yearn for ballet — something so beautiful, yet so broken. And as broken as she feels, can she ever open her heart to someone else?

Touching, romantic, and peppered with humor, this debut novel explores the tenuousness of perfectionism, the possibilities of change, and the importance of raising your voice. 

For fans of Sarah Dessen and Mary H.K. Choi, this lyrical and emotionally driven YA follows Alina, an aspiring dancer who suffers a devastating injury and must face a world without ballet — as well as the darker side of her former dream

This book was received from the Author, and Publisher, in exchange for an honest review. Opinions and thoughts expressed in this review are completely my own.

This is a non spoiler review, because you as reader need to read this book. Also, I feel sometimes I have in the past gave away to much of the plot line. This has diminished the pleasure for would be readers.

THE OTHER SIDE OF PERFECT by Mariko Turk is a thought provoking insightful look at the struggle a young adult girl must grow through during a pivotal moment in her life.

Alina Keeler, has only had one passionate dream…Ballet.

In a series of events the unthinkable happens and a crushing injury halts any kind of future in ballet.

Her life takes a considerable turn and she finds herself starting her junior year of high school as full time student. No longer an online student that was pursuing a professional career in the arts, everything takes getting adjusted to.

Alina’s lifeline friend Margot helps her settle into her new life at Eagle View High School. Taking on the roll of substitute in a school musical Alina finds herself faced with a set of new obstacles. As she comes to turns with what life has dealt her, she undergoes character changes.

An emotional and hard look at what happens when everything you ever hoped for doesn’t happen. All the hard work and long hours isn’t enough, when fate becomes fickle. Alina has to over come so much so fast that she resents those that are allowed to follow their dreams and aspirations. She also will learn some humility and I enjoyed watching her character grow. A budding angst relationship makes for a memorable romance.

I enjoyed this book so much and I loved that not only was it diverse, or also explores themes of privilege.

Thanks to the author and publisher

Mariko Turk grew up in Pennsylvania and graduated from the University of Pittsburgh with a BA in creative writing. She received her PhD in English from the University of Florida, with a concentration in children’s literature. Currently, she works as a Writing Center consultant at the University of Colorado Boulder.

She lives in Colorado with her husband and baby daughter, where she enjoys tea, walks, and stories of all kinds. 

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