Dance from Deep Within by D.L. Sleiman

Book reviews are subjective. I tend to rate books not according to how “perfect” they are, seem to be, or are said to be in general but rather to how perfect they are to me. WhiteFire Publishing provided me with a complimentary copy of this book for an honest review.

Dance from Deep Within by D.L. Sleiman

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

(Click the title to find the book description/blurb.)

Layla, Rain, and Allie first meet each other in class at college. They’ll be collaborating on Unity in Diversity writing assignments for the semester. But they’ll need each other for more than that as they face new challenges of culture, faith, and love in Dance from Deep Within, a novel by author D.L. Sleiman.

Likely no big surprise, but it was the racially and religiously diverse aspects of this book that attracted me to it, without my knowing anything else about the plot. While I’ve read mainstream fiction and nonfiction with this kind of diversity, and have seen a little more of it in some Christian thrillers, this may be my first encounter with it in a contemporary women’s ChristFic novel.

There’s a lot going on in the three main ladies’ lives, and I’m already anticipating reading the sequel. Now, the characters’ feelings and thoughts would run the gamut (perhaps slipping from enlightening contemplation to idling in place sometimes), so I had a little difficulty following along emotionally here and there. I also have some trouble when proselytizing and romance mix in novels, as it makes me feel iffy about the characters’ motives and the timing of it all.

I’ll admit the story’s “Jesus visions” became a bit much for me—not because I don’t believe in visions, but with it happening a few times and to more than one character, it started to feel like too convenient a tack for the plot. Also, considering how fierce parents can be, I didn’t find a particular scene to ring the truest to life, as I believe a parent would spring to action much faster in such a dubious situation.

Still, I enjoyed the dynamics between Layla, Rain, and Allie throughout the book, and a scene showing how ride-or-die they become got me especially pumped about their friendship. Again, I’m looking forward to seeing what the sequel has in store for these women.

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