At long last, I’m so happy to reveal the cover for Book 3 of the Ballet Theatre Chronicles! Ballet Orphans is a prequel to the series, same location (San Francisco), same company (West Coast Ballet Theatre), only it’s set twenty years before the other two books. I just loved creating this fascinating backstory. And I am wildly in love with the cover art, created by Bookfly Design’s James T. Egan. I think he hit the ball out of the park with this one. What do you think?
Pub date is January 2, 2021. Look for a more formal “Introducing Ballet Orphans” post this fall, likely in November, when the book will be set up on Amazon for preorder, and where I’ll share advance praise and endorsements. But in the meantime, here’s what Ballet Orphans is about.
It’s 1990, and New York soloist April Manning is trying to rebalance her world in the aftermath of her parents’ deaths. An offer to join the struggling West Coast Ballet Theatre as a principal dancer seems like the perfect opportunity for a fresh start—a new life in San Francisco, an exciting step up in her career, and the hope of a redefined sense of family. But the other dancers are wary, clannish and tight-lipped, particularly about an incident that hastened the departure of their beloved artistic director, leading to the arrival of his replacement, the young, inexperienced Anders Gunst. And no one wants to talk about Jana, a former company member who defiantly walked out rather than work under Anders. It is Jana herself who offers April hints about the incident, and even friendship, where she reveals a loneliness and hunger to belong that newly orphaned April well understands. But there is something troubling about Jana, and what April doesn’t know could prove deadly.
A prequel to the Ballet Theatre Chronicles, Ballet Orphans explores the work and sacrifices required to arrive at the highest tiers of the professional ballet world, coupled with the primal, universal desire to belong, to love and be loved, and the lengths we’ll go to protect those we call family.
A fun factoid is that my 2018 novel, A Dancer’s Guide to Africa, segues right into Ballet Orphans. Fiona, the narrator from the latter, follows her childhood friend, April, out to San Francisco, and I can’t say anything more without being a spoiler. So do yourself a favor and read A Dancer’s Guide to Africa now, while Ballet Orphans incubates a little longer. It’s on special for $0.99 and you can find it HERE. Book 1 of the series, Off Balance, is also on $0.99 special HERE.
And speaking of exciting new changes, check out my updated author’s website. It’s still being constructed, so forgive the mess as you look around, but I’m thinking it’s going to be a mighty fine home. Give it a peek HERE.