Date of Publication: April 10 2014
Theo is better now.
She's eating again, dating guys who are almost appropriate, and well on her way to becoming an elite ballet dancer. But when her oldest friend, Donovan, returns home after spending four long years with his kidnapper, Theo starts reliving memories about his abduction—and his abductor.
Donovan isn't talking about what happened, and even though Theo knows she didn't do anything wrong, telling the truth would put everything she's been living for at risk. But keeping quiet might be worse.
Pointe is about a lot of issues but mostly it's about a girl that's lost and trying to find her way.
I could connect to her instantly. The narration was honest with lots of little comments about weather or explaining high school events and it felt so real. I could even picture Theo, this aspiring ballerina, and I'm generally not very involved in people's emotional business but I wanted to help her so much.
Theo's friend Donovan was kidnapped for years ago. He has been found but won't speak about what happened. The story isn't about him. He plays a big role in what happens, but it's more about Theo dealing with her life. She's lost. She doesn't cope with the world very well and she actively partakes in behavior that harms herself. She is also real, with her parents that love her so much, her friends, the history she has in her town, and her passion for ballet.
All of these aspects of her life were explored and all shaped her in some way. I think Pointe is such an extremely character driven novel that it doesn't even matter what the plot was, the story is about Theo. The plot wasn't a focus and it didn't need to be because Pointe was about Theo's emotional journey with some flashbacks from the past. It was hard to read about and it's one of those books where the mood from the story is tangible and ended up affecting me strongly. I somehow end up picking up the book's emotions and this one was rather dark and sad.
I think the only flaw in Pointe was that everything started to be okay in the end and I don't know how quick the transition was. It feels like the climax occurred too quickly, as did the dénouement and maybe that was done on purpose so by the time the reader finishes the book the focus is not on Theo but the issue, because Pointe is an issue book.
It's a book similar to Rabbit Ears by Maggie De Vries, but I think Pointe explored more issues broadly whereas Rabbit Ears was more focused. I don't know, I don't feel like I did Pointe justice in my review but I want to say in glad I read this story. It's a lot about harmful behaviour and I think it deserves to be read, albeit carefully and by people able to handle the subject matter maturely.