The Cranes Dance

The Cranes Dance- by Meg Howrey - 373 pages
Book Blurb: So begins the tale of Kate Crane, a soloist in a celebrated New York City ballet company who is struggling to keep her place in a very demanding world. At every turn she is haunted by her close relationship with her younger sister, Gwen, a fellow company dancer whose career quickly surpassed Kate’s, but who has recently suffered a breakdown and returned home.
Alone for the first time in her life, Kate is anxious and full of guilt about the role she may have played in her sister’s collapse.  As we follow her on an insider tour of rehearsals, performances, and partners onstage and off, she confronts the tangle of love, jealousy, pride, and obsession that are beginning to fracture her own sanity
My Review: 3.5 stars
This book is different in so many ways. We’re on a one way track inside this young woman’s head who is coming apart at the seams after her sister’s mental illness becomes too much for the protagonist to handle/hide/absorb. This book delves into so called perfection, professional athletes, self-absorption, friendship, sisters, mental illness and living in the moment. I often ached for this character and wanted so bad to teach her how to communicate verbally and honestly. Although I’ve never danced, I can see how dancers would immensely enjoy this book and relate to many other aspects of this storyline that I could not. An interesting book.

Quotes I liked:
- “Even if she’s absent, her negative space takes up so much room. It has weight, texture, scent. I nearly ordered her a vodka tonic.”

- “I realized she was right and that needing people and caring about them were two very different things. I tucked this thought inside me like a fortune cookie. It was a secret and it made me feel powerful even though I didn’t understand why.”

- “What is forgiveness all about? You shouldn’t ask for forgiveness. Because if you ask someone to forgive you and they do, then that’s twice you’ve taken something from them. First the betrayal, then the absolution.”
- “Sometimes it better to suck up the fact that you’re an asshole and decide that tomorrow is the day you will start being the person you intend to be.”

- “I have nothing, I thought. But that’s not true, I have her absence. You can see it clearly. Look for the edges of my existence that surround it.”
Tags: Fiction, 2012, Sisters

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