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Girl Through Glass: A Novel
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Harper 2016
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Description

Long-listed for the Center for Fiction First Novel Prize

An Amazon Best Book of the Month

A Buzzfeed Most Exciting Book of the Year

A The Millions Most Anticipated Book of the Year & Bestseller

Selected as a Skimm Read

A Refinery 29 Best Book of the Year

Chosen as a Rumpus Book Club Selection

Chosen as a Bustle Best Literary Debut Novel Written By Women in the Last 5 Years

An enthralling literary debut that tells the story of a young girl's coming of age in the cutthroat world of New York City ballet—a story of obsession and the quest for perfection, trust and betrayal, beauty and lost innocence.

In the roiling summer of 1977, eleven-year-old Mira is an aspiring ballerina in the romantic, highly competitive world of New York City ballet. Enduring the mess of her parent's divorce, she finds escape in dance—the rigorous hours of practice, the exquisite beauty, the precision of movement, the obsessive perfectionism. Ballet offers her control, power, and the promise of glory. It also introduces her to forty-seven-year-old Maurice DuPont, a reclusive, charismatic balletomane who becomes her mentor.

Over the course of three years, Mira is accepted into the prestigious School of American Ballet run by the legendary George Balanchine, and eventually becomes one of "Mr. B's girls"—a dancer of rare talent chosen for greatness. As she ascends higher in the ballet world, her relationship with Maurice intensifies, touching dark places within herself and sparking unexpected desires that will upend both their lives.

In the present day, Kate, a professor of dance at a Midwestern college, embarks on a risky affair with a student that threatens to obliterate her career and capsizes the new life she has painstakingly created for her reinvented self. When she receives a letter from a man she's long thought dead, Kate is hurled back into the dramas of a past she thought she had left behind.

Told in interweaving narratives that move between past and present, Girl Through Glass illuminates the costs of ambition, secrets, and the desire for beauty, and reveals how the sacrifices we make for an ideal can destroy—or save—us.

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Format:
Adobe EPUB eBook, Kindle Book, OverDrive Read
Street Date:
01/26/2016
Language:
English
ISBN:
9780062326294
ASIN:
B00X3MK8VI
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Citations
APA Citation (style guide)

Sari Wilson. (2016). Girl Through Glass: A Novel. Harper.

Chicago / Turabian - Author Date Citation (style guide)

Sari Wilson. 2016. Girl Through Glass: A Novel. Harper.

Chicago / Turabian - Humanities Citation (style guide)

Sari Wilson, Girl Through Glass: A Novel. Harper, 2016.

MLA Citation (style guide)

Sari Wilson. Girl Through Glass: A Novel. Harper, 2016. Web.

Note! Citation formats are based on standards as of July 2010. Citations contain only title, author, edition, publisher, and year published. Citations should be used as a guideline and should be double checked for accuracy.
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Date Added:
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Date Updated:
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        Sari Wilson trained as a dancer with the Harkness Ballet in New York and was on scholarship at Eliot Feld's New Ballet School. She was a Wallace Stegner Fellow at Stanford University, a fellow of the Provincetown Fine Arts Center, and her fiction has appeared in Agni, the Oxford American, Slice, and Third Coast. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband, the cartoonist Josh Neufeld.

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shortDescription

Long-listed for the Center for Fiction First Novel Prize

An Amazon Best Book of the Month

A Buzzfeed Most Exciting Book of the Year

A The Millions Most Anticipated Book of the Year & Bestseller

Selected as a Skimm Read

A Refinery 29 Best Book of the Year

Chosen as a Rumpus Book Club Selection

Chosen as a Bustle Best Literary Debut Novel Written By Women in the Last 5 Years

An enthralling literary debut that tells the story of a young girl's coming of age in the cutthroat world of New York City ballet—a story of obsession and the quest for perfection, trust and betrayal, beauty and lost innocence.

In the roiling summer of 1977, eleven-year-old Mira is an aspiring ballerina in the romantic, highly competitive world of New York City ballet. Enduring the mess of her parent's divorce,...

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title
Girl Through Glass
fullDescription

Long-listed for the Center for Fiction First Novel Prize

An Amazon Best Book of the Month

A Buzzfeed Most Exciting Book of the Year

A The Millions Most Anticipated Book of the Year & Bestseller

Selected as a Skimm Read

A Refinery 29 Best Book of the Year

Chosen as a Rumpus Book Club Selection

Chosen as a Bustle Best Literary Debut Novel Written By Women in the Last 5 Years

An enthralling literary debut that tells the story of a young girl's coming of age in the cutthroat world of New York City ballet—a story of obsession and the quest for perfection, trust and betrayal, beauty and lost innocence.

In the roiling summer of 1977, eleven-year-old Mira is an aspiring ballerina in the romantic, highly competitive world of New York City ballet. Enduring the mess of her parent's divorce, she finds escape in dance—the rigorous hours of practice, the exquisite beauty, the precision of movement, the obsessive perfectionism. Ballet offers her control, power, and the promise of glory. It also introduces her to forty-seven-year-old Maurice DuPont, a reclusive, charismatic balletomane who becomes her mentor.

Over the course of three years, Mira is accepted into the prestigious School of American Ballet run by the legendary George Balanchine, and eventually becomes one of "Mr. B's girls"—a dancer of rare talent chosen for greatness. As she ascends higher in the ballet world, her relationship with Maurice intensifies, touching dark places within herself and sparking unexpected desires that will upend both their lives.

In the present day, Kate, a professor of dance at a Midwestern college, embarks on a risky affair with a student that threatens to obliterate her career and capsizes the new life she has painstakingly created for her reinvented self. When she receives a letter from a man she's long thought dead, Kate is hurled back into the dramas of a past she thought she had left behind.

Told in interweaving narratives that move between past and present, Girl Through Glass illuminates the costs of ambition, secrets, and the desire for beauty, and reveals how the sacrifices we make for an ideal can destroy—or save—us.

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reviews
      • premium: False
      • source: Washington Post
      • content: "A tragic depiction of a girl adored far too soon by a grown-up world...Artfully rendered through the viewpoint of an adolescent dancer who performs with great maturity while remaining fatefully naïve...So visceral, so real."
      • premium: False
      • source: Los Angeles Review of Books
      • content: "Masterful...Wilson's New York City imagery is applied exquisitely and dynamically...In the end, the well-honed story line of GIRL THROUGH GLASS is not unlike a certain kind of stylized psychological ballet, á la Antony Tudor, with heightened characters dancing along dire boundaries. Powerfully stark."
      • premium: False
      • source: Buzzfeed
      • content: "A haunting portrait of obsession, ambition, sacrifice, and the secrets one woman thought she left in the past."
      • premium: False
      • source: Booklist (starred review)
      • content: "A nimble, nuanced psychological drama that leaps through time and place with an appropriate and assured agility...Wilson speaks with vibrant authority and acute vulnerability as she exposes the conflicted and competitive behind-the-scenes world of professional ballet."
      • premium: False
      • source: People Magazine
      • content: "Intense and mesmerizing."
      • premium: False
      • source: New York Times Book Review
      • content: "The book's subject is less the ballet itself than the costs of early virtuosity—the feeling of being propelled by a force you don't understand and can't control—and the dangerous intoxication of the perfect, weightless moments when everything but 'air, motion, height' falls away."
      • premium: False
      • source: Joanna Rakoff, author of MY SALINGER YEAR
      • content: "Few novels have affected me as deeply as Sari Wilson's GIRL THROUGH GLASS...I loved, loved, loved this novel. So much so that I hid from my kids in the bathroom so I could read it!"
      • premium: False
      • source: Jean Kwok, New York Times bestselling author of GIRL IN TRANSLATION
      • content: "Powerful. Gripping. Incandescent...As powerful storytelling kept me turning the pages, Wilson's extraordinary voice whispered to me about the things that both bind and divide us: desire, ambition and love. This book will stay in my heart for a long time."
      • premium: False
      • source: Daniel Orozco, author of ORIENTATION AND OTHER STORIES
      • content: "Wilson's take on the New York City dance scene is pungent and vivid and slyly satirical...This novel of a girl who grows up way too soon is deftly plotted and beautifully written, and is about as suspenseful and affecting as a coming-of-age story can be."
      • premium: False
      • source: Elizabeth L. Silver, author of THE EXECUTION OF NOA P. SINGLETON
      • content: "An astonishing debut. At once chilling and sensual, furious and tender, GIRL THROUGH GLASS...will leave you haunted, mesmerized, and wanting more. I loved it."
      • premium: False
      • source: Jaimy Gordon, author of LORD OF MISRULE, Winner of the National Book Award
      • content: "Only a writer of very remarkable gifts could have the stylistic brilliance, the athletic daring, speed, power of ellipsis, the leap—to tell this dark story correctly, and to bring to life its principals...In her stunning first novel, Sari Wilson has done just this."
      • premium: False
      • source: Miranda Beverly-Whittemore, New York Times bestselling author of BITTERSWEET
      • content: "GIRL THROUGH GLASS explores a lost New York through the eyes of a gifted young dancer struggling to harness the ecstatic power she wields...Lush with the shame and exhilaration that lie at the lip of adolescence, Sari Wilson's debut novel bravely explores the risks of celebrating precocity."
      • premium: False
      • source: John Searles, bestselling author of HELP FOR THE HAUNTED and STRANGE BUT TRUE
      • content: "Sari Wilson has created a dark and beautiful world in these pages filled with complex and fascinating characters. GIRL THROUGH GLASS is an impressive debut novel that will thrill readers with its steadily mounting tension, which builds, layer upon layer, to a surprising and satisfying conclusion."
      • premium: False
      • source: Ruth Ozeki, bestselling author of A TALE FOR THE TIME BEING, shortlisted for the Booker Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award
      • content: "In her lyrical debut novel, GIRL THROUGH GLASS, Sari Wilson explores the beauty and complexity of time and the emergence of a woman's identity. This engrossing story, told with great artistry, captures the romance and rigor of art-making. Sari's prose is balletic: elegant, musical, and captivating."
      • premium: False
      • source: Kate Walbert, author of OUR KIND, National Book Award finalist
      • content: "A debut novel of exceptional daring and verve, Sari Wilson's GIRL THROUGH GLASS is a chilling, evocative portrait of the 1970s New York dance world and the young lives it consumed."
      • premium: False
      • source: National Review
      • content: "...an intense, engrossing novel."
      • premium: False
      • source: Publishers Weekly
      • content: "Uniformly engrossing...Mira and Maurice's relationship has the fairy tale feel of Beauty and the Beast, but the pages brim with the realism of gritty, crime-riddled New York...Surprising and bittersweet...elevates the coming-of-age story with a dark undercurrent about the cost of obsession."
      • premium: False
      • source: Library Journal
      • content: "An absorbing novel, rich with detail both about ballet and New York. Alongside the unusual setting of Mira's realm of dance are the...emotional struggles of a young woman dealing with adolescence, complicated by...
      • premium: True
      • source: Publisher's Weekly
      • content:

        November 9, 2015
        Wilson’s debut novel begins in 1977 and centers on Mira Able, an 11-year-old straining to push through the physical and emotional demands of the New York City ballet world. It’s an ambition complicated by her parents’ lack of interest in ballet and unraveling marriage, and further complicated by Maurice, an older, disabled man interested in Mira and her future as a ballerina. Meanwhile, interwoven in alternating chapters is the present-day story of Kate, a dance historian and professor who, after sleeping with a student, is compelled to seek
        closure from her mysterious past in New York. Wilson’s premise and structure could have been disorganized and dull
        in less deft hands, but the story is a uniformly engrossing look into the fabled world of hypercompetitive 1970s ballet. Mira and Maurice’s relationship has the fairy tale feel of Beauty and the Beast, but the pages brim with the realism of the gritty, crime-riddled New York, especially as the plot ricochets toward a surprising, and bittersweet, merging of Kate’s and Mira’s stories. Wilson writes lovingly of ballet and elevates the coming-of-age story with a dark undercurrent about the cost of obsession. Agent: P.J. Mark, Janklow & Nesbit Associates.

      • premium: True
      • source: Library Journal
      • content:

        December 1, 2015

        Wilson's debut novel is an engaging tale of ballet, obsession, and consequences. In 1977 New York, 11-year-old Mira is a dancer escaping the chaos of her home life in the disciplined world of ballet. Within three years, she grows into a potential star, getting key performance roles and becoming one of the few dancers handpicked by George Balanchine for greatness. She also attracts the attention of Maurice DuPont, a 47-year-old ballet fanatic looking for a muse. Then Mira abruptly disappears from that world. The book is told in alternating narratives: Mira in gritty Seventies New York, and Kate, a dance professor in the Midwest, in the present. Kate's shaky academic career is interrupted by a letter from the past, from a man she had thought was dead. Her return to New York uncovers truths she'd been avoiding for years. VERDICT This is an absorbing novel, rich with detail both about ballet and New York. Alongside the unusual setting of Mira's realm of dance are the more familiar emotional struggles of a young woman dealing with adolescence, complicated by precocious talent. Recommended for readers who appreciate complex characters and a carefully crafted style.--Melanie Kindrachuk, Stratford P.L., Ont.

        Copyright 2015 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

      • premium: True
      • source: Booklist
      • content:

        Starred review from October 15, 2015
        Weaving the stories of budding ballerina Mira Able and floundering dance historian Kate Randell, first-time novelist Wilson joins their lives through one singular, shocking situation. Mira, an adolescent in 1970s New York, magnetizes ballet aficionado Maurice, an urbane, Svengali-like impresario who takes her under his wing, resulting in a coveted admission to George Balanchine's School of American Ballet. Her parents' divorce and mother's feminist sensibilities leave Mira adrift and vulnerable to Maurice's increased attention and her own dawning sexuality. In the present day, Professor Kate Randell is on track for a prestigious Pell grant when the arrival of a cryptic message from her past catapults her into an inappropriate relationship with a student and a journey to resolve issues from her childhood. Mira's abrupt abandonment of a promising career and Kate's discovery of a crucial link to a long-buried trauma coalesce in a fiery denouement that cauterizes the open wounds created by misplaced trust. The result is a nimble, nuanced psychological drama that leaps through time and place with an appropriate and assured agility. Once a ballerina herself, Wilson speaks with vibrant authority and acute vulnerability as she exposes the conflicted and competitive behind-the-scenes world of professional ballet.(Reprinted with permission of Booklist, copyright 2015, American Library Association.)

subtitle
A Novel
popularity
227
publisher
Harper
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