Fans of Elizabeth White won't be disappointed with this one. She shows us how God can use Christians as a shining light no matter what their occupation...even the world of ballet. Gilly's faith shown through even when she was faced with adversity. What a role model for all of us!
Every little girls dream is to be a ballerina, isnt it? I remember dancing for many years imagining what it would be like to be one. Unfortunately I have elephant feet and didnt get far (only took me 11 years to figure that out hehe)So when Gillian (Gilly as her friends call her) get the opportunity to dance as a soloist there is no looking back a whole new world opens up. But even more important to Gillian is her faith in Christ and how she displays it to her dance friends and family. To complicate her world she finds there may be more to life than dancingTour de Force by Elizabeth White is definitely modern and thought provoking work of fiction. I was surprised by some of the topics and characters in her book (ie. her dance partner is gay, and her friend has an abortion) but in all honestly I do think it is a realistic look at the dance world and the characteristics of our fallen world.I enjoyed Whites heroine and her strong characteristics, yet innocence still in tact. I like that she presented the struggles right out and didnt side-step them but dealt with them.A possible stumble for some people maybe that there are a lot of ballet terms in it. I like that White gives you the list of terms if your unfamiliar with them (it shows she knows her stuff), but it is easier if you actually know what they are or youll be flipping a lot.The only thing that bothered me was the minor detail of a minor character Graham the six year old nephew of the leading man Jacob(his sister died and he was the guardian). He reminded me more of my three year old instead of an actual six year old. He could have been cast as a three year old with the same effect. Anyhow, like I said minor detail lolIf you like raw emotion, a bit of romance, and some definite issues to be dealt with youll enjoy this coming of age book a lot!
When I was growing up, you had to look hard to find a little girl who didnt harbor dreams of becoming a ballerina one day. While mine may have been more low-key than that of most girls, I did have pretty wallpaper with chubby ballerinas on it in multi-coloured costumes in a plethora of positions. When a belief that I was clumsy put the binders on my ballerina dreams, my love for dance went undercover. I devoured any movie prominently featuring dance and lived vicariously through Ballet Shoes. Its no wonder I couldnt resist reading Elizabeth Whites Christian ballerina romance Tour de Force. White drops her Christian ballerina smack-dab in the center of a profession well known for its cut-throat competitiveness, sexual immorality and the fanatical dedication of its dancers (even to the point of self-harm). Gillian Kincade (Gilly) is a talented young dancer who has just made soloist with Ballet New York. When Jacob Ferrar, the artistic director of the Birmingham Ballet Theatre sees her dance, the seed of an entirely new Christian ballet is formed in his mind.As Gilly and Jacob brainstorm the new project at a distance, a tender romance begins to bloom between them. When a disastrous first performance of a scene from the new ballet for Jacobs board of directors casts everything into doubt, both Gillys career and the growing feelings between the pair reach an impasse.Tour de Force is a fairly straightforward, sweet romance that remains rather straight-laced despite the risqu profession it portrays. The moral pitfalls of the ballet world are clearly presented while never becoming explicit. Jacobs own sin-filled past as an unbeliever are present in guardedness and caution in his character and Gillys interactions with her unbelieving fellow dancers are both gentle and grace-filled while standing uncompromisingly for Gods standards.
This was one of the most wonderful stories I have read in a while. It's been a while since I've been to see a ballet live and I really miss it. There's nothing like watching the beauty, grace and elegance of the dancers on stage and seeing the wonderful performance right before your eyes. This book made me feel like I was watching a carefully choreographed dance with words. Gilly and Jonathan had wonderful chemistry together and I could picture both of them dancing together on both stage and in real life. They were characters that grew throughout the book and their transformations were intriguing to read. I enjoyed learning about the ballet and how hard it is to be a dancer and the struggles one has to go through to make it to the top. While the book has a strong faith based message, it is not preachy. It handles topics such as abortion and homosexuality with grace and tactfulness and does condemn those that choose those lifestyles. I really enjoyed seeing how the situation with Alexandra was handled. Too often in Christian fiction, there's always a cop-out ending with people getting away with things wrongfully. However, this time I was delightfully pleased with how everything played out, there was enough to satisfy mysnarky side with forgiveness and mercy being displayed as well. It's always nice to see authors putting in recurring characters in their books for their long time fans. I enjoyed seeing Laurel and Cole make appearances in this book. It's like seeing long lost friends again. This is another wonderful book from Elizabeth White and I'm looking forward to reading her next book.
I read "Tour de Force" when school finished for me in mid-June. It was great! I couldnt put it down! Im sure my husband didnt like it when dinner wasnt ready because I was reading and couldnt stop! It really was a great book. I passed it on to my daughter-in-law and she just finished it. She is going to pass it on to my other son's girlfriend in Seattle when they go visit them this week. Then Ill get it back from her and pass it around some more here in LA. Thanks for writing and using your gifts to inspire and challenge people to walk with God daily!