The Winner with Erin Bomboy + Giveaway

Book Details:

Book Title: The Winner: A Ballroom Dance Novel by Erin Bomboy
Category: Adult Fiction, 326 pages
Genre: Women's Literature, Literary Romance
Publisher: Curtain Call Press
Release date: Dec 20, 2016
Content Rating: PG-13: (four brief sex scenes with no named body parts and written in metaphor, five minor instances of profanity (no f bombs), no violence)

Book Description:

The most prestigious ballroom dance competition in the United States.

Two dancers need to win.

Only one can.

Nina Fortunova wasn’t supposed to end up almost thirty, divorced, with her dreams of winning shattered. She teams up with Jorge Gonzalez, a Latin dancer, to reinvent the flashy Smooth style. When the Chairman of the Judges offers to throw the competition in their favor, Nina must decide how far she will go to win, even if it means losing Jorge.

Carly Martindale is doing everything she’s been taught not to do—placing her happiness first by dancing with Trey Devereux, the former three-time champion who’s returned to competition for mysterious reasons. Carly becomes obsessed with Trey and allows him to control her every move at great risk to her physical and emotional health. How far will she sacrifice herself, so Trey and she can win? Co-workers, then friends, and now arch competitors, Nina and Carly face off to determine who will be the winner.

Bright, emotive, and told through dual narrators, The Winner examines the costs associated with winning, the internalization of parental ambition, and the effect of gendered roles on and off the dance floor. A literary romance, The Winner is perfect for readers who love Dancing with the Stars, Strictly Come Dancing, So You Think You Can Dance, and the old-school elegance of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers.

The Winner contains a fact-versus-fiction section at the end.

Praise for The Winner:

“ . . . educational, enjoyable, and engrossing.”
- Midwest Book Review

“The Winner is a winner.”
- Goodreads Review

“Rousing, bittersweet, and heartbreakingly beautiful.”
- Amazon Review

To read more reviews, please visit Erin Bomboy's page on iRead Book Tours.

My Review

This book was promised to be a hit with fans of dancing competition shows like Dancing with the Stars and So You Think You Can Dance. Thus, I was intrigued to check this book out. Yes, it does feature dancing but it is about so much more than just "dance".

I loved the two main female leads Nina and Carly. Nina is the veteran in this story and Carly is the newbie. Yet, both women hold no grudges toward each other. In fact, Nina helps and encourages Carly in the competitive world of ballroom dancing. Nina sees a bit of her younger self in Carly. It is kind of like Nina can try to make amends for her faults with Carly.

Carly visa versa does remind me of Nina. The more she dances, they more she wants to win. I was sad to see hoer first relationship crumble. It was young love but it seemed like true love as well. The alternating voices and storylines of Carly and Nina was well done. Both voices were strong but equally showcased. As you can tell I grew close to both women. One last thing I wanted to point out is the ending. There is nothing worse than to read a story only to get to the ending and find it a disappointment. You are in luck as there was only happiness with this ending.

Buy the Book:

Meet the Author:

A native of Richmond, Virginia, Erin Bomboy trained as a classical ballet dancer before spending a decade as a professional competitive ballroom dancer. She holds an MFA in Dance Performance and Choreography from New York University Tisch School of the Arts. She lives in New York City with her husband and daughter where she works as a writer, editor, and teacher in the dance field. In her free time, Erin enjoys bacon, books, cats, and wine.

She is the author of The Piece: A Contemporary Ballet Novel and The Winner: A Ballroom Dance Novel. Her next novel, tentatively titled The Pas de Deux: A Classical Ballet Novel, will explore the relationship between a ballerina at the end of her career and the much-younger dancer with whom she falls in love. Taking the shape of a traditional pas de deux, it will premiere in 2018.

Connect with the author: Website ~ Twitter


By Erin Bomboy

I write, but I don’t call myself a writer. After spending years as a dancer, I consider myself a choreographer who uses words as my medium. My overarching goal? To reflect dance at every level. My books and articles are not just about dance; they function as a dance.

In The Winner, I’ve embedded the ethos of ballroom dancing into the book’s deepest level by employing dual narrators. This reflects the two floors on which ballroom dancing takes place: the social and the competitive.

The social dance floor is just that — social. Individuals swap partners, and whether it’s a Cha Cha or a Waltz, dancing acts as a conversation. Steps replace words, beats inform pauses, and bonds are formed among people who might not otherwise form them. Having fun is the goal, yet that requires flexibility and adaptability. While ballroom dancing employs standardized patterns and timings, each person acts and reacts differently. Success occurs when the couple prioritizes the partnership rather than themselves as individuals.

Ballroom dancers approach their craft seriously, practicing for hours at a time and taking lessons from top coaches. The opportunity to show off one's prowess becomes irresistible. Thus, many practitioners compete. Using style and skill, passion and proficiency, couples attempt to sway judges to mark them as number one.

Ballroom dancing, though, is not quantitative like swimming or running. While clean technique is essential, it is never enough. To win, a couple must present a compelling, captivating point of view. As one of my former coaches put it, “The more time they spend watching you, the less time they have to watch everybody else.”

In The Winner, two female protagonists vie for your attention: Nina, an older competitor who's been given one last chance at gold, and Carly, a naive newbie who wants to win for all the wrong reasons. This structure of dual narrators allows you to "dance" with more than one protagonist. Plus, it casts you as a judge to decide who, exactly, is the winner of The Winner. If you do me the honor of reading, I’d love to know whom you think wins — both on and off the dance floor.


Enter the Giveaway!
Ends Oct 7

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traveler said…
This novel sounds wonderful and your review was great. Thanks.
Erin Bomboy said…
Thank you for reading and reviewing!
Mystica said…
Sounds interesting.

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