Kid’s Book Review: Sing If You Can’t Dance

Kid’s Book Review: Sing If You Can’t Dance

About the Book and Author

An empowering story about not letting disability (or life’s challenges) get you down, dictate your life, or deny you happiness.

Ven has her future all planned out. Her dance group is going places and so is she . . . Then she collapses. On stage.
In hospital, Ven discovers that she has a medical condition – one that threatens to ruin everything. No more dancing . . . walking is challenging enough. But she doesn’t want your pity.

Ven is determined to have a big, exciting life. Sure, her future might be different, but it’s not over . . . Because if you can’t dance, you can always sing!

Alexia Casale

Alexia Casale is a British-American author, writing consultant and teacher of British-American citizen of Italian heritage.

After gaining an MA in Social & Political Sciences (Psychology major) then MPhil in Educational Psychology & Technology, both at Cambridge University, she took a break from academia and moved to New York. There she worked on a Tony-award-winning Broadway show before returning to England to complete a PhD and teaching qualification (full PGCHEP). In between, she worked as a West End script-critic, box-office manager for a music festival and executive editor of a human rights journal. She now works as Director of YA Shot: a young adult and children’s literature festival with a large outreach programme providing free author visits to libraries paired with disadvantaged local schools.

She’s not sure which side of the family her dyslexia comes from, but is resigned to the fact that madness runs in both. Her debut novel, The Bone Dragon, was shortlisted for the Waterstone’s Children’s Book Prize and the Jugendliteraturpreis, and long-listed for the Branford Boase Award. It was also a Book of the Year for the Financial Times and Independent.

Book Review

One of my favourite quotes in this novel is 'I am the life I make happen.'

‘Sing if you can’t Dance’ is officially in my top ten books. It was an absolute work of art! When I started reading the first chapter, I was a tiny bit confused because the author used a lot of metaphors and short sentences but when I got further into the book, I realised that they were really effective because the main character is EXTREMELY sarcastic.

This book is written in first person and I have to say, I think it would’ve been terrible if it was in third. There was a lot of times where it was as if Ven, the main character, was actually talking TO the reader and that gave it the feeling that it was a conversation with the reader, which I quite liked.

I think that the focus of this story is to be yourself, no matter what and always to persevere. One of my favourite quotes in this novel is ‘I am the life I make happen.‘ This quote feels very empowering and it implies that you can do anything if you put your mind to it.

I absolutely ADORE this book, however I would recommend it for ages 13-14+ because there is some inappropriate language and a bit of kissing in it, which is upsetting because this book would’ve been perfect for younger kids if that wasn’t in there.

I hope you enjoyed this review and if you were expecting more, well in the voice of Ven, get over it!!

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Reviewer Profile

  • Name: Reeya
  • Age: 12 years
  • Likes: Reading, Writing, Cassandra Clare books
  • Dislikes: Maths and Science
  • Favourite Book: Queen of Air and Darkness by Cassandra Clare
  • Favourite Song: Game of Survival by Ruelle
  • Favourite Film: City of Bones