Taking place mostly in Brooklyn (and coincidentally right in the neighbourhood where I was staying while I was there last week!), dancergirl is about Alicia and her friends after an online film project gets out of hand. Her friend Charlie, a budding filmmaker, shoots some intentionally voyeuristic videos of Ali (aka dancergirl) dancing, and posting them on Zube (this story’s version of Youtube) under the moniker shyboy. After a few of the videos go viral, and gaining some popularity at school, a different video pops up on Zube. One that Ali and her friends didn’t film. They soon realize that their pet project has gotten out of hand when Ali finds herself with a stalker. What ensues is a mystery-solving adventure of sorts, with the underlying cautionary tale lingering in the background.
I received the ARC of dancergirl from Netgalley and was excited to get a chance to read it before it’s release in November. This was a very enjoyable read. The main characters were well-developed, the story was well-paced and throwing in some twists and turns, it makes for a great novel. The writing is witty, causing me to actually laugh out loud at how Tanzman describes Ali’s nemesis Samantha’s eyes. Writing style notwithstanding, I love stories that have to do with dance and, as mentioned above, I found it a strange coincidence that I was just at those very locations and streets in Brooklyn last week that were mentioned in the book.
dancergirl is extremely relevant in this day and age, where young kids & teens are putting themselves out there on the internet, not realizing how much privacy they are giving up and who some of these people could be that are watching your videos. It shows that internet fame isn’t always what it’s cracked up to be, coming with some grave consequences and potentially alienating yourself from the actual people around you.
A little fun fact that a fellow book blogger friend mentioned to me, regarding the author’s last name, ‘Tanz” is actually “dance” in German!
Look for this book on shelves November 15, 2011!
Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ (4/5 stars)