Finding himself the man of the family, London dancing master Alec Valcourt moves his mother and sister to remote Devonshire, hoping to start over. But he is stunned to learn the village matriarch has prohibited all dancing, for reasons buried deep in her past.
Alec finds an unlikely ally in the matriarch’s daughter. Though he’s initially wary of Julia Midwinter’s reckless flirtation, he comes to realize her bold exterior disguises a vulnerable soul–and hidden sorrows of her own.
Julia is quickly attracted to the handsome dancing master–a man her mother would never approve of–but she cannot imagine why Mr. Valcourt would leave London, or why he evades questions about his past. With Alec’s help, can Julia uncover old secrets and restore life to her somber village…and to her mother’s tattered heart?
The Dancing Master by Julie Klassen had a slow moving start that eventually picked up the pace, but never gripped me so that I couldn’t put the book down. I put the book down on several occasions and didn’t find myself in a hurry to pick it up again…the characters and the story just weren’t engaging enough to stay with me.
The characters were shallow – a dancing master who was afraid to get his hands dirty with a different job so he could support his mother and sister, a rich matriarch’s daughter who was so concerned with only herself that I wanted to shake some sense into her, and a matriarch of a village that was so desperate to bury pain in her own life that she controlled everyone and everything around her.
The story was enjoyable but predictable in many ways. While there were a couple of surprises along the way, this book was just too slow and too shallow for my liking.
I give this book 3 stars out of 5.
“Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc. Available at your favourite bookseller from Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group”.