Review: The Night Dance – Fairy Tale Set in Arthurian England

Posted August 13, 2015 in Reading, Review / 0 Comments

Review: The Night Dance – Fairy Tale Set in Arthurian EnglandThe Night Dance by Suzanne Weyn
Series: Once Upon A Time
Publisher: Simon Pulse (2005)
Paperback (193 pages)
Also by this author: Water Song
Also in this series: Snow, Water Song, Sunlight and Shadow
Reading Challenges: 2015 Birthday Month, 2015 Fairytale Retelling, 2015 Re-Reading, Read 2015


Under the stars, in a secret world…
Rowena, the youngest of twelve sisters, loves to slip out of the castle at night and dance in a magical forest. Soon she convinces her sisters to join her. When Sir Ethan notices that his daughters’ slippers look tattered every morning, he is certain they’ve been sneaking out. So he posts a challenge to all the suitors in the kingdom: The first man to discover where his daughters have been is free to marry the one he chooses.
Meanwhile a handsome young knight named Bedivere is involved in a challenge of his own: to return the powerful sword, Excalibur, to a mysterious lake. While looking for the lake, Bedivere meets the beautiful Rowena and falls for her. Bedivere knows that accepting Sir Ethan’s challenge is the only opportunity for him to be with Rowena forever. But this puts both Bedivere and Rowena in a dangerous situation…one in which they risk their lives for a chance at love.

Find the book: Goodreads

My Review

This retelling of The Twelve Dancing Princesses is set in Arthurian England. The twelve sisters’ mother is Vivienne, the Lady of the Lake. This is different than other retellings of the same story.

Rowena, the youngest of the twelve sisters, is the main character and the sister who inherited her mother’s second sight. Even though she does not know or understand her magical inheritance, it could be all that helps her find her missing mother.

Rowena’s first vision is about an unknown-to-her knight named Sir Bedivere. Sir Bedivere was one of the knights of King Arthur’s Round Table. With the death of Arthur at Camlan, Sir Bedivere is tasked with returning Excalibur to the Lady of the Lake, Vivienne.

Morgan le Fey was the one who imprisoned Vivienne in a lake below her own home. When Rowena becomes close to discovering the truth, Morgan le Fey comes up with a plan to distract the girls. This leads to the girls leaving a locked room at night and returning with worn out dancing slippers.

The girls’ father, Sir Ethan, has been overprotective since Vivienne’s disappearance and wants to know what is going on with his daughters. He issues a challenge that the man who can discover where his daughters go at night can marry one of them. Sir Bedivere takes part in this challenge.

I enjoy this story even though I can tell from the very beginning how it is going to end. It is a fun, light summer read.

Which Reading Challenges?

  • You Read How Many Books? Reading Challenge
  • Birthday Month Reading Challenge (July)
  • Hard Core Re-Reading Challenge
  • Fairytale Retelling Challenge (The Twelve Dancing Princesses)


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