Book List

8 Must-Read Books for Dancers

March 18, 2022
Lindsey Ferris

Are you a Broadway and ballet fanatic or do you love dancing with your friends to the latest hits on the radio? Whether you’re classically trained or just enjoy breaking it down in your living room, here are 5-6-7-8 books every dancer must read! Let’s get to turning…these pages!

8 Must-Read Books for Dancers

1. Shine by Jessica Jung

Enter the world of K-pop dance with Jessica Jung! Seventeen-year-old Korean American Rachel Kim, was recruited by one of Seoul’s largest K-pop labels, known for churning out some of the world’s most popular stars. Can Rachel make her dreams come true as industry scandals lurk and chemistry sparkles between her and heartthrob K-pop idol Jason Lee?

2. Turning by Joy L. Smith

Every dancer has dealt with injuries but what happens when an accident leaves you without the use of your legs? Genie is a former aspiring ballerina who must confront her past to move forward from a devastating fall. With her friends’ support, Genie starts to see that her time at the barre isn’t over yet and begins the journey on a new path—one where she doesn’t have to be alone and has the strength to heal from the past.

3. Bones of Ruin by Sarah Raughley

If you’re a dancer, then you’ve probably toyed with the idea of testing your balance and coordination with other sports. What about tightrope walking? Check out this thrilling historical fantasy that is set in 1880s London following Iris, an African tightrope walker, with a secret: she cannot die.

4. Chain of Gold by Cassandra Clare

Cordelia Carstairs is a Shadowhunter. Her mother wants to marry her off, but Cordelia is determined to be a hero instead of a bride. Get ready to be swept off your feet by the grand ballrooms and dances that serve as hiding places where vampires and warlocks mingle with mermaids and magicians as Cordelia navigates life in London.

5. Take Me Home Tonight by Morgan Matson

Calling all theatre lovers! Kat and Stevie – best friends, theater kids, polar opposites – have snuck away from the suburbs to spend a night in New York City. They’ll see a play, eat at the city’s hottest restaurant, and have the best night ever. Over the course of a wild night the girls will get a wake-up call about their friendship, their choices…and finally discover if theatre is really what they want for their future.

6. Tiny Dancer by Siena Cherson Siegel; illustrated by Mark Siegel

When you’ve spent your entire life working toward something, how do you figure out what comes next? And how do you figure out who you are without the all-important thing that defined you? This graphic memoir perfectly captures this feeling as Siena makes the difficult decision to quit being a ballerina and figure out what her next step in life will be.

7. As If on Cue by Marisa Kanter

A pair of fierce foes are forced to work together to save the arts at their school in this swoony enemies-to-lovers romance that all Broadway fanatics are bound to enjoy. Can Natalie and Reid overcome their competitive side to cowrite and direct a musical? Let me grab my dance shoes because I’d love to be in a rehearsal with these two as they untangle their feelings for each other!

8. Black Ballerinas by Misty Copeland; illustrated by Salena Barnes

Misty Copeland made history by becoming the first African American female principal dancer for the American Ballet Theatre. Learn about the trailblazing women who inspired her to push against repression with talent on and off the dance floor. Each biography is accompanied by a stunning illustration of the dancer that will leave you in awe of the power and grace each woman held.

Ready for another book rec? Find out which book pairs perfectly with your favorite movie musical!

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