Girl Through Glass: A Novel
An enthralling literary debut that tells the story of a young girl’s coming of age in the cutthroat world of New York City ballet—a story of obsession and the quest for perfection, trust and betrayal, beauty and lost innocence.
In the roiling summer of 1977, eleven-year-old Mira is an aspiring ballerina in the romantic, highly competitive world of New York City ballet. Endu...more
I like my ballet novels like I like my pointe shoes: pink and shiny on the outside, edged with aging bloodstains on the inside. Smooth with satiny allure from one angle, frayed and shattering from the others. Quiet as pattering tiptoes sometimes, but sometimes as cloppingly loud as a galloping horse. Spackled with resin and stitched and bound together with viselike ribbons. Stuffed with bloody lambswool so the sh ...more
The novel alternates between Mira in the 1970s, when she was enrolled in a highly competitive ballet school and her family life is in turmoil, and the present day, when she is now a professor and dance historian who calls herself Kate. There is a reason why she changed her name, and t ...more
But....I struggled hard to get into this book. The writing is overly affected and showy; formal, with odd observations, almost as if Wilson was trying too hard to impress. The story is narrated in the first person for chapters taking place in the present and in the third person in chapters taking place in the past. The chapters alternate and it's a jarring jux ...more
Preteen Mira has been graced with the physical form and stamina, the mental acuity and discipline, and an inherent musicality that propel her swiftly and surely into th ...more
“Maybe the people who tell you to trust them can’t be trusted, and the people who ask nothing are the ones who are there when you need them.”
Novels and films about ballet enthrall me, especially the stories regarding the psychological torture ballerinas often put themselves through to achieve the perfect Arabesque silhouette. Jealousy, doubt, and anxiety mesh to create a jumbo for which the dance thrives, and no one's immune to the belly of the beast behin ...more
**unmarked spoilers ahead**
I picked up this book because I love works of art that pull back the veneer on the harsh, gritty, uncaring world of ballet, and I love literary fiction. I thought that Sari Wilson's 2016 literary novel, "Girl Through Glass," would deliver both in spades.
I expected to read the literary version of one of my favorite movies: the 2003 Robert Altman indie film/almost-docu-drama, "The Company," about an aspiring ballerina performing with the renowned Joffrey B ...more
I mentally debated giving this book two stars because there was some pretty good writing, but in the end, I just can't do it. Every time I remember reading this book, all I feel is some sort of unpleasant, annoyed sensation inside.
First and foremost, Girl Through Glass turns out wildly different from what the description indicates. This can be totally fine - great, even! - as long as the actual narrative is an improvement upon what you expected. This one was not.
In the 1970s is Mira, a youn ...more
I think my major gripe with the novel is that, up until the last fifty pages or so, it feels very much like two novels. The surprises at the end aside, it was not difficult to see how the past and present would converge, but the two story lines ...more
It is hard to classify this book as anything other than about dance and about life and as they merge into one. Sari has woven a tapestry that blends with reality and had me wondering what parts of this book were truly fictitious. The raw emotion and passion of the young girl can be felt through t the pages, just as the loss of self can be felt in the woman.
There are events that you can feel unfolding, and yet they s ...more
This raw & true-to-life behind-the-satin and ribbons story will shock you as much as the beauty and grace that mesmerizes you.
This debut story is brilliantly crafted & simply exquisite; Wilson describes Mira's cult-like, competitive, obsessive, exquisite beautiful world unlike any other author I've read. I couldn't put this book down. Loved this.
As I often do when books are told in alternating perspectives… I find myself leaning to one story line over the other. In this case it was young Mira’s story that d ...more
Unsurprisingly, Mira is (view sp ...more
Told in interweaving narratives that move between the late 1970s and present day, this novel is about aspiring ballerina Mira. In 1977, Mira is 11 years old, coping with her parents' divorce, and quickly rising the ranks of the competitive world of New York City ballet. In the present, Mira, now known as Kate, is a professor of dance in the Midwest, still struggling with reconciling her past and her former life as a dancer.