Seth is a successful dancer in Toronto, until a serious car crash destroys his career. At his lowest ebb, he runs into Brook, who’s the brother of his best friend, Lizzie, and who he met briefly on the night of his accident. There’s an obvious attraction between the two of them, but Seth has too many scars, both physical and mental, to consider getting involved with anyone. Brook, however, is determined to help Seth overcome his demons and realize that his identity is bound up in more than being a dancer.
Set against the backdrop of a snowy Ottawa winter and written in Sean Michael’s usual straightforward, unfussy style, A New Way To Dance is a contemporary romance that deals with some complex emotional issues. Though he doesn’t acknowledge it at first, Seth has a serious eating disorder that’s only made worse by his refusal to give up on everything associated with being a dancer. In his mind, he can’t let go of his old way of life, and it’s up to Brook to make him see that things need to change if they’re going to have any chance of happiness. Brook turns out to be selfless and devoted to making Seth well, while Seth struggles with getting close to someone again after his previous sub ended their relationship in the nastiest way possible.
As you’d expect, there is plenty of hot and very loving sex, as Seth and Brook learn everything about each other’s needs and desires. However, the story takes an abrupt tonal shift towards the end, as the last couple of chapters turn into a long and involved piercing scenario. It’s almost as if, having wrapped things up to a satisfying conclusion, the author then thought readers wouldn’t be happy unless the book contained some heavy BDSM action. Fans of hurt/comfort fiction, though, will enjoy seeing how Brook helps Seth heal, and the many descriptions of Seth being fed will appeal whether or not that’s your particular fetish. (Though seriously, ‘ants on a log’? Celery, peanut butter and raisins combined as a snack? That’s wrong on too many levels to count…)