Circus Dreams: The Making of a Circus Artist

Kathleen Cushman, Author, Michael Carroll, Illustrator Joy Street Books $15.95 (90p) ISBN 978-0-316-16561-7
Readers will almost be able to smell the sawdust as they follow the experiences of a trapeze artist during her first year of professional training. As the first American student to attend the National Center of Circus Arts of Chalons-sur-Marne, France, 18-year-old Montana Miller faces numerous challenges. Besides working hard to meet her coaches' rigorous demands, she struggles to win the acceptance of her peers and adapt to a new culture. In recalled memories and excerpts taken from her letters home, the book reveals the artist's internal growth as she overcomes loneliness, builds self-confidence, masters new skills and ultimately resists the temptation to return to the States and lead the more conventional life of a student at a liberal arts college. Perfectly complemented by Carroll's exquisite photographs, this absorbing documentary offers an intimate profile of one dedicated performer while evoking the pain, tension, thrills and magic that are all a part of circus life. Ages 10-up. (Nov.)
Reviewed on: 10/01/1990
Release date: 10/01/1990
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