The Blueberry Swirl Waltz: One Scoop or Two


Katie Hathaway has worked hard to escape her small hometown of Roebling, New Jersey, in the early 1950’s. She has just been offered a job as a dance instructor for a studio in Trenton, when she decides to share her exciting news with her family, and takes the bus back to her hometown. When she arrives, she discovers that her mother has a broken arm, and will need help during the upcoming weeks working in the family’s ice cream parlor. She soon realizes that her mother is late paying her rent for the business, so Katie puts her job and future on hold to move back home and help for the summer. In walks Chaz Hollander, whom Katie had a crush on during high school. They begin spending time together, and events unfold so that she is eventually teaching Chaz and several others some popular dances. 

This book reflects a simpler time in history, and is a slower-paced lower-tension story. The first part of the book tells more than shows what is happening, but it gets better as the story progresses. Katie works diligently to meet every challenge she faces, and finds creative solutions for each one. Chaz is a very empathetic and courageous counterpart to Katie—which is a nice surprise when reflected against the air of entitlement present in some wealthy and privileged young adults in today’s world. There are some minor spelling issues, one of which is Katie’s sister's name, which is spelled two different ways within the book. This story has a wonderful innocence about it and is a reminder that simplicity has inherent value and power!

Carey Sullivan