Note: This ARC was provided by Bold Strokes Books via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Every single time I read a Melissa Brayden-penned novel, I automatically know it's hers even if she didn't have her name written on the cover. Her writing style pulls you into the lives of these characters that she introduces you to and you can't help but become invested in seeing where their story will take them and how they'll be able to overcome the challenges that lie ahead while celebrating the milestones they reach as individuals and as a couple. Her latest release lives up to the lofty expectations put in place by having experienced every full-length novel this gifted author has written. First Position is set in the the ballet world and is the story of two talented dancers, one disciplined but lacking emotion, the other passionate but needing focus. Forced to work together, they challenge each other, push the other to reach beyond what they believed either one was capable of, and find so much more.
Twenty-seven-year-old Natalie Frederico has always put dance first. To her, it's all about the art, not about how much money can be made out of performances and shows. She lives by her own ideals, but when the opportunity to dance with the New York City Ballet is presented to her, even with modern dance being her true love, she's more than willing to set it aside to put her pointe shoes. Working side-by-side with the cool and efficient Ice Queen of the ballet company, however, is enough to keep Nat on her toes. Anastasia Mikhelson is all about achieving perfection but is informed she's missing the passion required for her to be a prima ballerina. Ana sees Nat just like she sees everyone else--competition, someone who could very well take what Ana values most and that's to be at the top. But these two may very well learn that sometimes, life's best dances are those that aren't choreographed.
Melissa Brayden has come up with yet another winner with First Position. Ana and Nat may appear to be opposites, but they come into each other's lives at just the right time, even though they probably didn't think so in the beginning. I liked how there was tension from the very beginning. These two were rivals, after all, but there was always something beneath that need to compete for the top spot and for the most recognition. The desire to be what the other needs overtakes everything else, and it made for a truly swoony read. Brayden's stories have always ended happily, so you know what you're going to get when you pick up a title of hers. What some may consider a knack for F/F contemporary romance has proven to be a talent and she's easily become one of my favorite go-to authors. First Position satisfied my need for a five-starred romance with bonus cameo appearances. ♥
Release Date: 16 August 2016
Date Read: 13 August 2016
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