Dancing Backwards by Salley Vickers
A Novel

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Synopsis

Violet Hetherington has taken the rash step of joining a transatlantic cruise to New York to visit Edwin, an old friend. As she makes the six-day crossing, she relives the traumatic events that led to her losing Edwin’s friendship and abandoning her career as a poet for the safety of marriage and domesticity. 
 

Despite her natural reserve, she meets a rich variety of passengers traveling with her, who affect her understanding of her own past. Most significant, she meets Dino, the dancing host, whose motives in befriending Vi are shady but who teaches her to ballroom dance and inadvertently helps her to recover from her past.

 

Moving between the late sixties and the present day, Dancing Backwards is written with the lightness of touch and psychological insight that characterize Salley Vickers’s acclaimed work. This bittersweet novel is subtle, poignant, and wonderfully entertaining.

 

About Salley Vickers

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Salley Vickers has worked as a dancer, an artist's model, a university professor of literature, and a psychoanalyst. She now writes full-time.
 
Published January 1, 2009 by Fourth Estate. 272 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction, Romance. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Dancing Backwards

Kirkus Reviews

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Once she reaches New York—after a few unsurprising on-board intrigues—she learns not only that Edwin holds no ill will but also what readers have assumed—that Bruno and Edwin were lovers all along.

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The Guardian

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Vi and Edwin are pale shadows of their brooding counterparts, and the languid world of slow inspiration (Vi has not written a poem for 20 years) looks far removed from the bold, busy world of today's bards.

Aug 15 2009 | Read Full Review of Dancing Backwards: A Novel

Book Reporter

Vickers is too good a writer to let Baz or Miss Foot become mere mouthpieces, but Vi’s encounters with them tend to be forced and rather portentous, all but shouting “Key moment here!” Nonetheless, this is a terrific and rather uplifting book.

Dec 29 2010 | Read Full Review of Dancing Backwards: A Novel

The Telegraph

The rest of Dancing .

Aug 02 2009 | Read Full Review of Dancing Backwards: A Novel

The Telegraph

By the time she reaches New York for her .

Jul 16 2009 | Read Full Review of Dancing Backwards: A Novel

MostlyFiction Book Reviews

There’s a good chance that the title of Salley Vickers’ book Dancing Backwards refers to a quote once made about Ginger Rogers: “Remember Ginger Rogers did everything Fred Astaire did, but she did it backwards and in high heels.” The quote implies that females have a harder role in life, and that...

Aug 05 2010 | Read Full Review of Dancing Backwards: A Novel

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Jul 19 2009 | Read Full Review of Dancing Backwards: A Novel

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Aug 16 2010 | Read Full Review of Dancing Backwards: A Novel

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