cover image Tiny Pretty Things

Tiny Pretty Things

Sona Charaipotra and Dhonielle Clayton. HarperTeen, $17.99 (448p) ISBN 978-0-06-234239-3

Gigi, June, and Bette are aspiring ballerinas attending the cutthroat feeder academy for the America Ballet Company in New York City. All three are on the cusp of determining whether they'll be relegated to the corps, or if they'll land a coveted spot as a principal dancer. African-American Gigi is the sweet dancer no one saw coming, nabbing roles that vicious, blond Bette and eternal understudy June (who is half-Korean) would kill for. Maybe literally. Shifting among the girls' alternating points of view, first-time authors Charaipotra and Clayton skillfully craft three distinctive, complex characters; even amid moments of cruelty and desperation, the girls are layered with emotion, yearning, and loss. This enticing glimpse into the ballet world is rich with detail and drama as the authors highlight its glamour and darkness, while revealing how jealousy can lead to terrible consequences, and the challenge that race can present to nonwhite dancers. A not-entirely-conclusive ending leaves the door open for a sequel. A Cake Literary property. Ages 14%E2%80%93up. Agent: Victoria Marini, Gelfman Schneider. (May)