Read Long Night Dance by Betsy James Online


Fifteen-year-old Kat is more her father's housekeeper than his daughter. Just like all Upslope women, Kat is required to stay close to the hearth and as far away from Downshore and its savage people as possible. Kat must remain "respectable" -- and that means covering her wild red hair, finding a husband to care for, and never singing, swimming, or dancing.But Kat knows thFifteen-year-old Kat is more her father's housekeeper than his daughter. Just like all Upslope women, Kat is required to stay close to the hearth and as far away from Downshore and its savage people as possible. Kat must remain "respectable" -- and that means covering her wild red hair, finding a husband to care for, and never singing, swimming, or dancing.But Kat knows there must be more to life -- she can feel it in her heart. She can hear the call -- the sound of drums beating, drawing her to the forbidden beach. When Kat can no longer resist the call, she discovers what she thinks is a fatally injured seal washed up on the shore. Instead, she has found a Rig, one of a charmed race of mythical seal people. The only way to save this mysterious man is to defy her father and her community and seek aid in Downshore. But does Kat have the strength to stand on her own?...

Title : Long Night Dance
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780689850714
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 199 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Long Night Dance Reviews

  • Mary Soon Lee
    2019-01-17 12:11

    This short young-adult fantasy is the first book in The Seeker Chronicles trilogy. I found Kat, the 15-year-old protagonist, sympathetic and the story engaging. The secondary-world setting had a mythic quality that I liked: the sea, animals, nature, the winter solstice, one person calling to another. Intermittently, the story acquired a depth and strength and sparse beauty that reminded me of Le Guin. At other times, it felt slighter and perhaps too easy, with several of the secondary characters readily being supportive to Kat, and threats resolving comparatively quickly. I particularly liked three of the secondary characters: Nall, Dai, and Mailin, and I also appreciated the inclusion of Kat's father's perspective, a less supportive but well-drawn character. I liked and enjoyed this book, but it didn't have the sustained excellence of the author's more recent book Roadsouls, a book that was deservedly nominated for the 2017 World Fantasy Award.

  • Paula
    2019-02-16 19:12

    I have no idea how Long Night Dance ended up on my TBR pile, it was something recommended somewhere that I thought sounded interesting and the rest was history... The focus of the book is Kat, who is just turned 15 and living as housekeeper for her father in what is a very joyless life, all rules and obligations. They live in Upslope, not associating with the people who live around them, who are universally condemned by them. The eponymous Long Night is coming soon, a night when the other people dance their various dances, while the good people of Upslope stay at home. Kat and her brother are already somewhat outsiders because her mother was one of the hill women and her father is still struggling to regain what he sees as his rightful place within the community as a result of his actions in marrying her. Kat is already starting to want to know who she is and (internally at least) rebel against all of this when she goes down to the beach and discovers someone washed up there - he is one of the seal people, cast out by them and left to die, and with the help of her brother, Kat saves his life. This decision, and the people they meet as a result of it, open her eyes to a larger world and help both Kat and her brother to change. What I really liked about Long Night Dance was two things: firstly, the descriptive language is excellent but not over-blown, and secondly, it doesn't fall into the trap of some YA books that the newly-introduced male character 'saves' the main female character somehow. It is Kat who is the active one here, not him, and he also actively rejects the possibility of her transferring her relationship with her father to him, encouraging her to find out who and what she is before making any sort of commitment. Much healthier for everyone concerned in the long run, in my opinion. Anyway, Long Night Dance is the first book of a trilogy, so I've put the other two on my TBR and will be keeping an eye out for a copy of the next one, which is Dark Heart.

  • Lindsey
    2019-02-12 14:00

    It's…okay. I was hoping for more, intrigued by the twist on the Irish selkie myth. It turned out that the selkie (called a Rig in this story), was hardly in the story, but was the catalyst for the protagonist's character change.I must say that I am extremely done with female characters named any form of "Kat." Katniss (Hunger Games), Katsa (Graceling), Katyesha (Long Night Dance). No more. Please. Think of something else!Kat's character was too often erratic to me. Her obsession with the Rig boy after just meeting him and her desperation of leaving her boring, terrible, chore-filled life ended up feeling melodramatic. She's quiet and shy one moment, and then yelling and protesting saying she doesn't want to be scandalous the next. If engineered well, ambivalence is a great source of conflict, yes! Yet I thought Kat's ambivalence was annoying. She sleeps next to the boy and lets him touch her and wants to be his, yet she just met him and admits she doesn't know him. I understand she's fifteen and living a sheltered life, so of course she's going to be fascinated by a living legendary creature such as he. Perhaps the writing intended to make the reader feel like the "calling" or "song" of the Rig is what nurtures this spontaneous obsession, but if so I don't think it came across well. Perhaps it was also the dialogue. Many times it didn't feel natural or sensical, and I wondered way too much about why the heck she was responding in the ways she did toward other characters.Overall, I didn't find the story (nor most of its elements) convincing.

  • Michele
    2019-01-22 18:12

    Betsy James lives in New Mexico and often teaches writing classes locally--after reading this book, I think I'll sign myself up for one. J.T. has already taken a class from her. Betsy has a crisp, lyrical, intensely visual voice. In a relatively short book, no, within the first chapter or two, she built a world, a mood, a mystery, and a crisis. Katyesha, entrapped in a life she does not want, calls to a love she does not know. She must decide whether to accept the life she's been living or to find the life she seeks. Sometimes the images were so thick, I had to really slow down in order to process them. This is not necessarily a flaw, but it was an exercise. The one point I did not like was the insinuation that marriage is entrapment and living together out of choice is freedom. I believe commitment in marriage is the opposite. You trust someone enough, love someone enough to say, "You are enough. I won't be looking for anyone else." That is freedom. Young people need the example of commitment. On the other hand, Betsy makes the point that one needs to know herself and to make a commitment, not because she is needy, or desperate, but because she is certain.I've got the sequel on hold at the library.

  • Sheree
    2019-01-29 12:55

    I was captivated by this original, easy-to-read tale, written beautifully in a haunting, poetic style. It's the story of a girl's coming of age, her quest for something better in life and the price that's paid for wanting more. Kat's 'awakening' takes place in a world of opposing culture & views; hatred and understanding, right and wrong, prejudice & acceptance, duty and freedom, land and sea.Kat is the child of a scandolous marriage between a Hill woman & an Upslope man. She has cared for her father & brother since the death of her mother but when she finds Nall, a Rig, her restrictive life changes forever. Despite fear & prejudice Kat is determined to save the injured man.Betsy James creates vivid pictures, you can clearly imagine the windswept shores, the sea calling, the haunting Rigi song & the freedom of dancing at Long Night.I really want to see if Kat gets a HEA with Nall so I'll definitely be following her story in Dark Heart & Listening at the Gate.To see my full review visit The Eclectic Reader

  • Kiana
    2019-01-18 15:53

    This book had everything that I really like: a unique fantasy, a rich cultural background, a little bit of romance, and a great author. The main thing that keeps it from getting five stars is that towards the end, things got a little confusing for me (although, that might have been because it was around one AM when I finished it) and that there is just SOMETHING about Kat's character that I don't like. I think it may be her voice. I find her to be a little, well, stupid for a fifteen year old and I thought her character just wasn't as strong as, say, Maerad from the Pellinor series by Alison Croggon. Other than those two little things, a really good book that prohibited me from sleeping because I wanted to get started on its sequel.

  • kyliemm
    2019-01-31 16:19

    I LOVED THIS BOOK! It definitely had a point--even an agenda, so much so to the point of being didactic. But it was a point I agreed with, so the didacticism (word?) didn't bother me, at least not too much. Overall, I thought this book was a great blend of feminism and fantasy. I loved the characters and the land James invented, and I especially liked that she was a U of U graduate who wrote such an interesting book :)

  • Melissa
    2019-01-21 14:49

    What a beautifully written spell binding book. There was this amazing gap between the people that lived side by side. Then you add a folk tale into this harsh world. It was so well done. But defiantly not for younger readers. There was subtle references to sex all over the book. But it was well done and in context with the book. Very quick read too.

  • Helvine Berinyui
    2019-01-20 13:01

    the book was good in general. but when i first started to read the book i had doubts about it because it has o much grammar and i just wasn't understanding what they were saying. But i decided to stay with the book because i started to understand it i love the romance between the two characters nall and kat i expected more romance but i'm still happy with what i read

  • Juliamkennedy
    2019-01-27 17:17

    ok so this book was really good, the thing was that i had already read the 2nd and 3rd book already so i knew mostly what happened in the book already. this series is really good and i suggest that people should read it!

  • Lydia
    2019-02-03 13:04

    kind of interesting, except i think it should have been done with the first book instead of being a one needs to know what kat does with the rest of her life :D it was ok but then the other books kind of dragged...

  • Erin
    2019-01-28 17:05

    This book totally had potential to be one of my favorites but something was missing...the language and culture is sometimes confusing....maybe I'll read the next book in the series and it will be better?

  • Rachel
    2019-01-31 15:03

    I had read this book years ago and loved it. I wondered after picking it up again if I would like it as much as the first time and I have to say that I do! This is a young adult novel. A coming of age story that as others have said, is poetic.

  • Laura
    2019-01-31 16:09

    This book is perfect in it's simplicity. Different from what I have been reading lately, but refreshing and honest. Kat is a girl who is discovering who she is supposed to be, rather than what she is.

  • Staci
    2019-02-07 18:03


  • Kezia
    2019-01-19 15:10

    i am a sucker for a new world evolved from the writer's imaginative mind so i really liked this book. I love everything about it, :D!!

  • Jessica
    2019-02-09 18:09

    I have reviewed this series as a whole on my blog here.

  • Alyssa
    2019-02-05 12:50

    once again, i love this series. this is the second book and i must have read it in one night because i couldn't put it down.

  • ♥ Ashleigh ♥contrary to popular belief i'm not actually mad!
    2019-02-17 19:03

    this was a beautiful story

  • Kim
    2019-02-16 15:56

    An amazing hero's journey--three books in the series, and all well worth your time if you love myth and great fiction.