*I received a copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review*
This is a difficult book to put a rating on. There’s family drama, crime drama and then there’s the resolution. My rating depends entirely on which aspects I dwell on.
Like others I was unhappy with the ending. Including spoilers and major plot points isn’t something I do in my reviews, I try to walk around the edges of the story because although I actually enjoy spoilers I prefer to discuss my general impressions of the book and allow others to determine if they want to know more or if they just want to read and find out. I think Pretty Girls Dancing can fall fairly neatly into a Poirot style of mystery in that readers enjoy being left guessing all the way until the end and want to enjoy guessing, getting to know characters and being highly suspicious of the tawdry details of characters’ lives. That style of mystery holds less interest for me but I kept reading because Brant’s characters are genuinely worth following as they struggle through lives impacted by tragedy. She provides the readers with several distinctly different women who are strong even as they are not action heroines or filled with girl power—this is absolutely refreshing. There are many mysteries with well written male characters who are strong and weak in diverse ways but I’ve found fewer where there are a variety of very different women whose strengths and weaknesses make them compelling in different ways. For that aspect of the book I’d rate Pretty Girls Dancing as four stars. The suspense/mystery and resolution were what pulled the book back toward three stars for me. I’d still recommend a read.