Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Review: Wish (Indigo Dreams #1)

by Grier Cooper
Series: Indigo Dreams #1
Publication date: December 2, 2014
Published by: Dancing Poodle Press
Ebook, 264 pages
My rating: 3/5 ★

A big thank you to Grier Cooper for sending me a free pdf-copy.
For Indigo Stevens, ballet classes at Miss Roberta’s ballet studio offer the stability and structure that are missing from her crazy home life. At almost 16, she hopes this is the year she will be accepted into the New York School of Ballet. First she must prove she’s ready, and that means ignoring Jesse Sanders – the cute boy with dimples who is definitely at the top of Miss Roberta’s List of Forbidden Things for Dancers.

But Jesse is the least of Indigo’s concerns. When she discovers her mom is an alcoholic, it simultaneously explains everything and heaps more worry on Indigo’s shoulders. As her mom’s behavior becomes increasingly erratic, Indigo fights to maintain balance, protect her younger brothers from abuse, and keep her mother from going over the edge. When the violence at home escalates, Indigo realizes she can no longer dance around the issue. At the risk of losing everything, she must take matters into her own hands before it’s too late.

I don't really know what to think of Wish. While I liked the story overall, I also had some problems with it. But let's start with the positive aspects. I loved that the dancing was such a big part of this book. I'm not a dancer myself but I've always ben fascinated with it and I really liked getting to know a little more about ballet. 

Indigo was a great main character; she felt real and I liked hearing the story from her point of view. As always, I would've handled certain things differently or reacted in a different way at times, but it wasn't annoying in any way. Indigo's family was a different story for me. First of all, I would've preferred a proper introduction to them. It took me a while to figure out how many brothers Indigo had and then there was the dog that was mentioned maybe twice throughout the book. I ended up liking Indigo's brothers, but her parents not so much. Her mom seemed a little over the top - I don't have any experience with her situation but it felt a little over the top for me. And then Indigo's dad was also completely irrational. I know that there are people that can't cope with situations like the one he was in but his denial was extreme in my opinion. But still, these things were just minor problems for me.

What really bothered me was how the story was structured. First of all, there is a lot of jumping around and we never get any kind indication as to how much time has passed since the last scene and things like that. I felt disoriented with every new chapter and that got a little annoying with time. Then, there are a lot of unimportant details that are mentioned but never actually play an important role in the story. For example the family dog. I don't even remember his name but I think he was mentioned once or maybe twice. During the time when the family was really struggling, I was always wondering, who is looking after the dog? I think it would've been best to just leave him out entirely. The same goes for the tutoring Indigo was supposed to do for some random person. This happened rather early in the book when Indigo meets some woman she doesn't like and is asked to tutor her daughter. Indigo is really stressed out about it but it never comes into play later in the book. I don't think Indigo went to a single tutoring session, so why not leave that part out?

I would've preferred if there had been more explanations about certain things that are important to the story, rather than focusing on these side comments. With the main story, everything seemed to happen very quickly and abruptly, without giving us the chance to figure things out on their own. The reader is often confronted with facts in a way that 'this has always been this way' and just has to be accepted. I don't know if that makes sense or not but I feel like most of the important stuff has either happened before the book takes place or is happening during a break in the story and then the story continues after that's finished. Sometimes I just needed to know more about what happened after a chapter ends for example.

But as I've said, I liked the book overall and maybe I was just too picky about these things that bothered me. I hope there will be a sequel where we'll get to know more about Indigo's dance career and I would also like to know what happens with her relationship with Jesse. I realize I haven't really talked about the romance in this book, which is, let's be honest here, quite strange for me. But I simply don't have a lot to say about it, the romance aspect certainly wasn't the main focus of the book and I liked that - otherwise I think it would've been a little much with all the rest that's going on. And it wasn't really swoon-worthy in my opinion. In fact, I think that's why I only gave this book three stars - it just didn't really make me feel anything even though it was a nice and enjoyable read.

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