Why would Emily risk her Olympic dream?
Falling in love with her coach wasn’t something she planned, in fact she tried very hard to avoid it, but once caught up in her love for Sergei, she knows there is no going back. But that doesn’t mean their relationship is going to be easy.
A pet peeve of mine (something even big time writers have been guilty of) is reading a book and it being perfectly clear that the writer has no clue about their topic aside from maybe a quick Wiki search. Trust me, nobody drives down a windy mountain road in Colorado during a blizzard at any speed over about ten miles per hour, even in an emergency.
I bring this up just so readers know that Jennifer Comeaux’s Life on the Edge does not have this problem. I honestly would have thought Jennifer was a competitive skater at some point in her life if I didn’t know better. Her familiarity with the ins and outs of skating shows her passion for the sport and her research ability. Every aspect of the skating side of her book felt very realistic, right down to the terminology and politics. You won’t be distracted by obvious gaps in skating knowledge.
After setting the backdrop of Life on the Edge so well, Jennifer created a cast of characters to match. Emily and Sergei are the main characters, the ones battling thru emotions, politics, and family animosity, but they aren’t alone. Emily’s partner, Chris, is not a main focus of the story, but his likeability and fun personality makes you worry about how Emily’s decisions will affect him. The other secondary characters were the same. From Emily’s roommate, to the junior skaters she helps coach, the rest of the cast filled in the story and made it complete.
The main attraction of Life on the Edge is the love story. Yes, the Olympics are huge, but after watching these two resist each other, then fall in love, then have everything put in jeopardy, I couldn’t imagine anything that wouldn’t be worth giving up for them to stay together. Jennifer does a great job of building their romance early on, then holding back. Even when they do give in, the problems are nowhere near over. Right up to the end, the relationship with its hope and uncertainty at times pulls you through the story.
As much as I loved the relationship, I did think there were potential areas to increase the drama a little more, especially when it came to another skater interested in Emily, but that’s just my preference. I enjoy a good love triangle, but not everyone does.
Life on the Edge is a heartwarming story of love and tribulation young adults and adults will enjoy.
Would I recommend this book? Yes, it is a delightful read. I can’t wait to read the second book and find out how Emily and Sergei’s trip to Russia turns out.
Who would I recommend this book to? Teens and adults, and of course, anyone who loves skating.