Review: Dance All Night by Alexis Daria

Do you want to be hugged by a book? Do you wish to jump into two people’s lives during a holiday you don’t even celebrate? That was me when I began reading Dance All Night, the latest in Alexis Daria’s Dance Off series.

Dance All Night CoverBroadway hotshot Nik Kovalenko is a confirmed bachelor.

Ballroom champion Jess Davenport is a bona fide Scrooge.

Last year, they shared a midnight kiss at a New Year’s Eve party that made both of them believe—briefly—in the magic of the holiday season. The magic was cut short when Nik went on tour the next day, but he never stopped thinking about that kiss—or Jess.

When the holidays roll back around, Nik runs into Jess again. He doesn’t want to spend another year pining for the Scrooge who got away, so he tells Jess he’ll stay if she’ll give him a shot at being her Christmas Present.

Jess thinks he’s full of it, but she agrees to three dates. If Nik can make her believe in holiday magic in a place as un-wintery as Los Angeles—and convince her that he’s ready to stick around—she’ll give him a chance. But he won’t know until New Year’s Eve. If she kisses him at midnight, he’ll have his answer… Goodreads

I received an eARC of Dance All Night from the author in exchange for an honest review.

Dance All Night features minor characters who manage to steal the light for themselves! Jess and Nik kiss at midnight one year. For the majority of the next, they can’t stop thinking of that kiss.

Especially Nik, whose feelings for Jess only grow and grow through online interactions that we get to see briefly. What’s so lovely about Nik’s feelings for Jess is how they never overshadow hers. Jess is never forced into the three Christmas themed dated. She is intrigued and approves of Nik’s charming love for the holiday.

I was equally charmed by Jess. She’s a Scrooge – a person who does not enjoy Christmas. But Jess has a heart of absolute Gold. I love that the heroine got to be grumpy and scowl-y in this one. She gave me so much joy with every step of the way. Jess’s feelings about Christmas stem from her past experience with her family and the holiday. I loved Jess’s rawness when she thought of her parents. The complexity of being a 23-year-old without a definitive feeling about one’s family struck home for me.

Nik, on the other hand, has grown up in a healthy household and his feelings about Christmas are those associated with togetherness and love. I liked how he had his own realization about why Jess was reluctant to just meet his family and jump into a relationship. Nik had been working a lot of shows that didn’t allow him to even have his own place.

What I also adored about Nik is his respect for Jess’ autonomy. The scenes where they’d kiss, or even touch simply, he made sure to ask first. I know this is… bare minimum, but you’d be surprised how many writers forget that consent is sexy and gloss over these important interactions.

Also, Nik blushes and Jess loves his blushes.

If you need one reason to read this book it’s this: it’s fun. So fun. So lighthearted while touching on past-issues that could affect one’s adult life. I loved Jess and Nik so much. I wish they get more appearances and lots of happy kisses. You can pick up a copy for yourself on Amazon.

Title: Dance All Night
Author: Alexis Daria
Series: Dance Off, #2.5
Length: 156 Pages
Release Date: December 11, 2018
Rating: ★★★★★ / Five stars
Genre: Adult Contemporary Romance
Representation: Black heroine, immigrant hero, Puerto Rican author 

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