When the author contacted me to review Life On The Edge I immediately jumped at the chance to read it! I am a huge fan of ice figure skating, whether in movies, books, or real live competitions. This book definitely kept true to its theme, and I was rooting for two things during my read, the romance and winning the 2002 Olympics. Emily, the protagonist has recently moved to pair skating and Sergei, their young russian coach has big dreams for them. The story begins in the year 2000, where Emily and Chris her partner, are practicing for preliminary competitions in the hopes to move up to the olympics. This is when the problems start.
The student-coach relationship Emily and Surgei has starts to blur when Emily takes up a job to co-coach a younger pair skating couple with Surgei and they start spending coffee breaks chatting with each other at Starbucks. Emily starts developing feelings for Surgei, and so does he, this is when they're really in trouble. I loved how the relationship started slowly, with them being friends and so forth; it just gives the book the realistic feeling so many contemporary novels seem to be missing.
The other theme in the book, the figure skating career of Emily. I am happy that the author didn't neglect it but actually gave it importance. I mean we're talking about players who have been on the ice rink since they were able to walk and practice at least 6 hours a day, of course this is something that would overtake their life! I was cheering for her, during her programs, I would hold my breath and pray that she skates a clean program, and wait in the kiss & cry to find out her scores then rejoice with her or feel disappointed. It was one emotional roller coaster!
The protagonist is 18 years old and that might seem a bit older from the usual YA novels, same as Surgei, who is six years older than her. Now I found this a bit odd for a YA novel, but the older age gives them more maturity and logical thinking than the usual 14 year olds!
Life On The Edge is a contemporary novel about achieving your dreams, finding your love, and being able to juggle all of this without going out of your mind!