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The Unexpected Waltzby Kim Wright
Synopses & Reviews
From the author of the critically acclaimed debut Love in Mid Air comes this moving novel about a middle-aged widow who finds her feet by embracing a new hobby: ballroom dancing.
Kelly Wilder becomes recently widowed from a much older wealthy man with whom she spent her married life doing charity work, building a lovely home, and, as she says, “pretending to be a whole lot more conservative and stupid and nicer than I really am.”
Now, with too much time and money on her hands, Kelly has absolutely no idea what happens next. So on a whim she signs up for a ballroom dancing class, and slowly, step by high-heeled step, begins to rebuild her life with the help of friends old and new: Nik, a young Russian dance teacher who sees the artistic potential she left behind; Carolina, a woman in hospice, anxious to experience a whole lifetime in a few months; and Elyse, Kelly’s girlhood best friend who knows all of her past secrets—including the truth about the man who long ago broke Kelly’s heart.
In the vein of Jennifer Weiner's novels, Unexpected Waltz is a deeply felt story about moving on after loss and finding a new walk—or dance—of life through the power of second chances.
"Wealthy widow Kelly is ready for a change, after 20 years of 'pretending to be a whole lot more conservative and stupider and nicer than I really am.' When she mistakenly wanders into the Canterbury Ballroom, the 52-year-old Charlotte, N.C., belle discovers her new passion: dancing. While frequenting the ballroom, she bonds with Russian Ã©migrÃ© dance teacher Nik and cancer-stricken, hospice-bound Carolina. Kelly's newfound interest also allows her to come to terms with a long-ago affair, precipitated by her distant relationship with her late husband. For in dance, and in life, Kelly learns, 'you have to lose your balance in order to find it.' Wright (Love in Mid Air) builds this dance drama — and Kelly's painful reinvention — with a cast of deftly drawn secondary characters: quirky best friend Elyse and her headstrong daughter Tory, pampered diva Pamela, feared studio owner Anatoly. She then expertly guides us through a moving, layered, and lyrical exploration of transformation. (June)" Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
About the Author
Kim Wright is the author of Love in Mid Air and has been writing about travel, food, and wine for more than twenty years for many magazines, including Wine Spectator, Self, Travel & Leisure, and Vogue. She has twice won the Lowell Thomas Award for travel writing. This is her second novel, and she also ballroom dances competitively. Kim lives in Charlotte, North Carolina.
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