Pas de Don't by Chloe Angyal

Pas de Don't by Chloe Angyal
Chloe Angyal
Jul 25, 2023

If you're a regular reader of this space, you might know that we occasionally spotlight books on their release date. But there is often a delay between the time when a book gets published and the time it can be bought, shipped, cataloged, tagged, and delivered to the shelves of your local library. So today we're introducing #NoWaitWednesdays, where we take a look at a title on the shelves of the New Release section of one of our branches that is desperately waiting for you to check it out. We can't guarantee there will be no wait at all, of course, but if it's on the shelf when we publish our post, we know your wait will be, at worst, minimal. As always, we love spotlighting books that are a bit under the radar - nothing against the Oprahs and Reeses of the world, but we know there are tons of great titles available at your Library that you can grab that don't have a hundred (or more!) folks on the wait list.

"Pas de Don't" by Chloe Angyal (pronounced "Angel") caught our eye for a few reasons: first of all, it's a romance, a genre that's long been popular with our patrons. Secondly, it's set in the world of ballet - in Australia, of all places - and lastly, the author wrote "Turning Pointe: How a New Generation of Dancers is Saving Ballet from Itself," a non-fiction look at the art form, so you know the author is going to treat its subject matter seriously. Indeed, this sweet, rivals-to-lovers, workplace romance is a love story that includes several issues within the ballet industry that serve as obstacles to overcome that will both educate and delight readers - even if you don't know your sauté from your jeté.

Heather Hays is a principal ballerina with a famous New York company engaged to her well-known dance partner. However, He thinks he's the celebrity of the couple, and after she catches him cheating, she escapes by dancing for the Australian National Ballet for a month. While there, a male dancer, Marcus Campbell, is tasked with showing her the ropes and acting as a Sydney tour guide since he's off the stage, recovering from a severe Achilles tendon injury. Sparks start to fly, however, the company has a strict "no workplace dating" policy, snarkily referred to by the dancers as "Pas de Don't," specifically to avoid abusive situations like the kind Heather suffered in New York. This is truly a no-tolerance policy - those caught in a relationship will be fired. As the chemistry leaps (hah) off the page, they try to navigate the no-relationship policy while they heal their physical and emotional injuries.

Reading "Pas de Don't" immerses the reader in the world of ballet, making them feel as if they're a fly on the wall watching the drama unfold both onstage and off. Heather and Marcus are fiercely intelligent and skilled artists, and Angyal, with her mountain of background experience, deftly handles both their emotional and physical states. This is a crowd-pleasing romance that definitely deserves a look. 

Reviewed by Gregg W.
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