a ballerina’s graphic novel
a memoir by Siena Cherson Siegel with artwork by Mark Siegel
published by Atheneum Books in 2006
I loved this graphic novel- featuring the talented ballerina Siena Cherson Siegel. Her story is inspiring- as a child- she had flat feet-even though doctors discouraged her from even trying to correct this problem- she and her mother persevered. Pursuing her passion to dance- filled her days and nights. This book accurately portrays the extreme dedication required to become a high level performance artist. There are gruelling and repetitive conditioning exercises along side blood, sweat and tears. These are balanced by glamorous and exciting performances- beautiful costumes, all enhanced by enchanting music.
I enjoyed the honest and unflinching perspective of a teenager- grappling with her changing body and the difficulties of going through puberty in a very public space. The complex relationships between the dance company were also fascinating to read. I would recommend this book- to young people age 11 and above- especially for those who are interested in competitive sports and obviously those who are interested in dance.