Jun 2, 2011

When the Stars Go Blue

When the Stars Go Blue by Caridad Ferrer follows Soledad a dancer about to graduate from college.  She plans to go to New York to persue a ballet career but when Jonathan convinces her to audition for the title role in his Drum and Bugle Corps production of Carmen.  Carmen and Jonathan quickly fall for each other but they face a rocky road throughout the summer.

This was an interesting book.  I enjoyed the rehearsal and performance sequences and how Soledad became part of an all male community.  Her Hispanic background and personality were interesting and I loved her interactions with the supporting characters.  I didn't however like her relationship with Jonathan .  It took about two pages for them to fall madly in love and she didn't think there was anything strange with him dropping everything he's always wanted to do and ruining his relationship with his father for her.

Appropriateness:  This book has a troublesome obsessive controlling relationship.  While it is ultimately portrayed as negative I would worry about a young teen seeing Jonathan's behavior as romantic as opposed to destructive as it's not as black and white as a physically abusive relationship.  If your young teen wants to read the book I would recommend that moms read the book along with their daughter so they can point out the warning signs as they come up (and it wouldn't hurt to talk about it with your older teen as abusive/destructive relationships are an important topic for teens).   There's no substance abuse.  The couple is sexually active, there is one sex scene that is not erotic or descriptive (and contains a condom, yay!).
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