April 27, 2014 12:00 AM

After ballet, life still clings to barre

I’ve been looking forward to Maggie Shipstead’s second novel since I read her debut, Seating Arrangements. That button-down satire of the Martha’s Vineyard set was the smartest romantic comedy of 2012. Shipstead can be fantastically witty about the anxieties and humiliations of middle age. Her take on a sniping corps of cutthroat ballerinas could be another bravura comedy.

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