Published by Penguin on June 3rd 2021
Genres: Romance, YA
#1 New York Times bestselling author of Everything, Everything and The Sun is Also a Star Nicola Yoon is back with her eagerly anticipated third novel. With all the heart and hope of her last two books, this is an utterly unique romance.
Evie Thomas doesn't believe in love anymore. Especially after the strangest thing occurs one otherwise ordinary afternoon: She witnesses a couple kiss and is overcome with a vision of how their romance began . . . and how it will end. After all, even the greatest love stories end with a broken heart, eventually.
As Evie tries to understand why this is happening, she finds herself at La Brea Dance studio, learning to waltz, fox-trot, and tango with a boy named X. X is everything that Evie is not: adventurous, passionate, daring. His philosophy is to say yes to everything--including entering a ballroom dance competition with a girl he's only just met.
Falling for X is definitely not what Evie had in mind. If her visions of heartbreak have taught her anything, it's that no one escapes love unscathed. But as she and X dance around and toward each other, Evie is forced to question all she thought she knew about life and love. In the end, is love worth the risk?
Thank you to The Write Reads and the publisher Penguin for the arc.
Once upon a time, I had ballroom dancing lessons, so when I read the blurb for Instructions For Dancing by Nicola Yoon, I was sold immediately. It was already on my TBR before I even signed up for the tour.
Instructions For Dancing is a contemporary romance with a touch of magical realism. I wouldn’t say it’s enough to call it paranormal, but it’s definitely something like the high school romance movies from the 90s and 00s. I can this one being turned into a movie too and doing really well. Their love story and the subject of ballroom dancing would be a good mix of new and old ideas.
The characters of Evie and X are adorable together. They seem like complete opposites but at heart, they also have a lot in common. They both have a big love. Both Evie and X have strong characters arcs, together and separate. They learn to be better, but only because they’re together. The side characters are fun, but they’re not too involved in the main couple’s arcs.
The only thing that slightly bugged me is the amount of telling. Instead of Evie finishing the conversations with her friends, Yoon opted to summarize the rest of the conversation. This increased the pacing, but it also made me connect less with the characters.
This book is filled with emotion and be prepared to feel either hollow or too overwhelmed when you finish the book. Good books make you think, great books make you feel. And Nicola Yoon delivers both.
I give Instructions For Dancing four and a half star. If you’re looking for a fun dance-centered romance story, this is definitely it. It’s fast-paced and easy to read, so perfect for a vacation/beach read.