Not long after, she sees her sister kissing her current boyfriend, and suddenly, she is watching a movie of their romance from the start to present to the future when they breakup. When what she saw later comes to pass, Evie knows she has a new, witchy skill around romance, something she has no interest in. When she discusses with her BFF, Martin, he suggests that she needs to go with the flow and check out the studio in the book she was told to take by the mysterious woman.
As she does, she enters the world of ballroom dancing and continues to see snapshots of everyone's romances when they kiss. What Evie notices most is the way they all end, and she is not ready to take a chance on her handsome and talented dance partner.
What I loved: This book was completely riveting - the storyline really kept me hooked, between the magic, ballroom dancing, and romances. The touch of magic was really interesting, and I loved watching the relationship snapshots that Evie sees. It's passive (she cannot change anything), but they show so many different types of beginnings and endings that I really loved it. Add that to the tidbits about Evie's favorite romance novels, and this was a really great showcase of love. Also, as a romance reader, I found a lot of the lists and discussions around romance novels to be particularly entertaining.
The characters were really compelling as well. Evie has a lot to work through with the way her parents' marriage ended and her views on relationships. She is grieving the life she lost and the disillusionment of those changes. During the book, Evie really starts to realize more about the people who are important to her and forgiveness. There is a lot of character growth, particularly towards the end of the book that was really beautiful. The other characters, particularly those at the studio, were also really fantastic. I fell in love with all of them.
The romance was really lovely. Evie and X (Xavier) were both dealing with their own grief and reactions to it, and together, they are able to support each other and grow so much apart and together. I was definitely cheering for them all the way through, and I cried at one particular scene that I won't share to avoid spoilers. This was all the feels.
Final verdict: So much more than a love story, INSTRUCTIONS FOR DANCING is a beautiful YA contemporary about romance, family, and character growth with a touch of magic. Highly recommend for fans of INSTANT KARMA, THEY BOTH DIE AT THE END, and DON'T DATE ROSA SANTOS.