This book was given to me by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Kat decided she wanted to do something new after retirement and decided to try belly dancing. By the description given of the book I expected a personal growth story. It almost felt as if it was one of that aims the author was going for, but she didn't quite get there.
The conflict of the story was Kat's stage fright. She talked about it to excess. At one point I was wondering if she was that stressed about dancing and preforming why she didn't just quit. Kat started belly dancing as a hobby. Something she wanted to do for herself. Then she became unhinged at the idea of preforming in front of people.
Kat's teacher was Sybil. Throughout the book she would finish teaching her class and then hurry off to some nameless place. It felt like her lines in a play were no longer on the page and she needed to get off the stage as quickly as possible. I wondered why and it was never answered.
The author kept hinting at back story, but then wouldn't complete it. For every five hints at background information she would give us one story. She kept describing things with vague words and it felt like she could see the things she was describing so well she would use vague words that left the picture incomplete. One example was the description of a stage. It was described as unusual, I don't know what made it unusual, was it made out of marble, or was it amoeba shaped, maybe there were spikes on the outer edge. I have no idea what made it unusual.
I wondered what Kat's family thought about her dancing. They were mentioned and said to be supportive, but she did not practice in front of them and they only went to one of her performances. For the most part we didn't actually talk to them about it and I wondered.
The other dancers were just names until near the end of the book. There was very little background information given. I had no feelings about them positive or negative. After awhile I stopped trying to keep them straight.
Halfway through there was a sudden location change. The characters went to a place where the people they encountered were behaving differently than what is considered the social norm, there were swingers, cross dressers, roll playing, etc. It felt like she was trying to be shocking and the more she went on about it the more her delivery fell short.
By the end of the story I did enjoy the friendships which had formed between Kat and the other characters.