Dancing On Thorns
By Briana Burress
Oct 1, 2005 - 2:13:00 AM

Michel is an unruly, clumsy sixteen year old boy who catches the eye of Nadia Petrovna, a legend in her own time from her performances in the ballet circuit and now the head of the Islington Ballet in London.  Going with her gut instincts, Nadia talks Michel into accepting a scholarship as an apprentice with her company. He is immediately placed in a class with Charles Crown, the artistic director, for the beginning of his instruction.  Crown does not waste any time in letting Michel know the rules and then places him on a rigorous routine that will teach him to dance properly or face dismissal. 


Michel inherits a flat that he and his friends work tirelessly to renovate.  It becomes their refuge each day for the next couple of years as they continue to practice in the huge studio that is part of it.


Jonni realizes it is too late to go back to the theatre and retrieve her house key when she leaves the party she has been attending.  She is a striving actress and usually does not go home with strangers but after seeing that Michel is not like the other guys there, she feels safe going home with him for the night. He does not take advantage of the situation since he is exhausted and falls fast asleep leaving Jonni to her own dreams.  She spends the next day with him and his best friend Primo who takes her to see Michel perform.  Jonni has never attended a ballet and cannot keep her eyes off of the lean erotic moves of his dancing. 


It is not long before the silent touches between Jonni and Michel become an erotic session of love making.  They spend so much time together that she moves in with him.  He enjoys coming home to waiting arms each night, but is alarmed when she says she loves him.  Jonni soon comes to the cold realization that even though Michel is very willing to show her the passions of his body, he will not give her his heart in love.  Her anger takes control of her as she runs away and comes face to face with a tragedy that will forever affect their lives. 


DANCING ON THORNS stole my heart from the very first chapter as I embraced the tumultuous lives and passion of Michel and Jonni.  Rebecca Horsfall gives us a massive story that is so addictive with such rich plots and characters that I found myself shedding many tears of sadness and joy as my heart became a part of this magnificent story.

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