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A Company of Swans is a sweeping tale of romance, freedom and the beauty of dance from award-winning author, Eva Ibbotson, with a new introduction by Joanna Nadin. Weekly ballet classes are Harriet Morton's only escape from her intolerably dull life. So when she is chosen to join a corps de ballet which is setting off on a tour of the Amazon, she leaps at the chance to run away for good. Performing in the grand opera houses is everything Harriet dreamed of, and falling in love with an aristocratic exile makes her new life ...

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Dec 17, 2008

exotic, romatic, and fun

Of the four Ibbotson novels I've read, this one has the most exotic location, Brazil, and the most dramatic plot device, ballet. The dancing in this novel, though, is more than just physical. Harriet, sweet Harriet, leaps away from her home in one defiant grande jete, landing amidst the trees and intrigue of the Amazon. There she meets and falls headlong for the manly and mysterious Rom Verney, the wealthy and noble (in more ways than one) British ex-pat. The characters whirl in and around one another in ever-tightening circles as the story trips along.

Despite the melodrama and the burlesque, Ibbotson creates living, breathing characters who react in very human ways. Like any good fairy tale, she paints the world and its denizens in black and white, with very few shades of gray. Ibbotson includes some sexuality, yet she emphasizes romantic emoting over explicit descriptions.

Overall, this is a light and enjoyable historical romance.

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