Spotlight: AUDITION by Stasia Ward Kehoe

Stasia Ward Kehoe's debut novel, Audition, is a triple threat -- it's a novel-in-verse that revolves around ballet and tackles some tough issues.

Personally, I couldn't NOT love this book. A stunning debut in every sense of the term. The verse, lyrical. The story, intense. The characters, memorable.

Stasia Ward Kehoe's sinuous verse compellingly weaves this story of high level dance, scandalous romance and personal sacrifice.

~Ellen Hopkins, NYT best-selling author of CRANK and PERFECT

It's Important to Know Where You Stand
by Stasia Ward Kehoe

Sara, the main character in Audition, often avoids making choices. Even in important situations, she accepts other people’s decisions or just lets things happen because she doesn’t speak up. While I admit to being a rather strong personality myself, I remember very clearly a situation in high school when I behaved a lot like Sara.

The choice I didn’t make was about a boy. Let’s call him Marc. I pretended not to notice the way he’d stand beside me in crowds or turn up when I needed help with something. To be completely honest (and it doesn’t make me sound like the greatest person), he was a bit goody-goody for me, and I wasn’t sure I wanted to be known as his girlfriend even though I liked him. But, he was cute and he liked me so I didn’t have the courage to turn him away. My only decision was to take no definitive action.

We’d gone with a group of friends but Marc, of course, offered to drive me home alone. We wound up sitting in his car, first chatting, then laughing and holding hands, then talking less with our faces about an inch apart — I mean, seriously breathing each other’s air — almost kissing until I chickened away from the inevitable and said something stupid. The eternally patient Marc smacked his hands against the steering wheel and drove me home.

A week later, he was going out with a girl name Abigail who kissed him all the time and never pretended she didn’t know what was going on. Abigail was an acquaintance of mine who, later on, took pains to tell me that I’d made Marc pretty crazy and that guys needed to know where they stood. She was right, of course. But not just about boys. It’s important to know where you stand in your own life, too. And to make sure you’re the person choosing what that life will be.


Excellent advice. Thanks so much for sharing your experience with us today, Stasia!

Audition releases tomorrow, October 13, from Viking Juvenile. Check it out here:


This is also a debut novel, so please take a moment to congratulate Stasia on her achievement!


And if you're looking for more YA novels that revolve around the performing arts, check out the Stages on Pages tour.

Happy Reading!


Rebecca (RivkaBelle) said...

Oh... Knowing where you stand. That's a great reminder right now...

Brianne Carter said...

I love dance and always want to read more books about it, so I'm incredibly excited for this!

erinbrambilla said...

Wow. This sounds like a great read. Knowing where you stand. Pretty powerful. Putting it on my to-read list now.

Lisa_Gibson said...

Super excited to read this one! Congrats!
Lisa ~ YA Literature Lover

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