The Dance

Narrated by: Kelli Tager
Length: 16 hrs and 50 mins
Categories: Romance, Contemporary
4.5 out of 5 stars (11 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

From Amazon and international best-selling author Alison G. Bailey comes a contemporary romance story about what happens after the happily ever.

Bryson Walker stumbled heart-first into the steady rhythm of her life, never questioning whether other possibilities existed. She had been Will’s girl since their junior year in high school, followed him to college, and married him soon after graduation. 

In every respect, they were a loving and successful couple, until a series of missteps shattered all of Bryson’s truths. Maybe, their life was nothing more than smoke and mirrors. A performance that was never based in reality.

Hart was barely an acquaintance. He and Bryson shared one brief moment during senior prom, full of friction and heat that ignited a spark. But that night, Bryson walked away, and Hart let her go. 

Years later, twisted fate brings Bryson and Hart together again, causing her to wonder if this is her second chance at once-in-a-lifetime. 

Note from author: Thank you for taking the time to listen to and review The Dance. Please try not to post spoilers. Each listener deserves their own experience and moment of discovery with every book they listen. If spoilers are in the review, please write "spoiler warning" at the beginning of your review. I appreciate your understanding and your review. 

©2016 Alison G. Bailey (P)2019 Alison G. Bailey

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Beautiful Second Chance in Love!

This was my first Alison G. Bailey's book. This is an emotional second chance in love. Bryson and Hart are great main characters. Bryson is a strong and caring woman, compassionate, and supportive. Hart is handsome, optimist, loving, and supportive. The secondary characters are great, besides Will, Bryson's husband who is selfish, superficial, and careless. He is blessed to have Bryson in his life. This is a long story, filled with drama, angst, twists and turns, heartbreaking and heartwarming scenes, and a satisfying ending. Kelli Tager is a new narrator to me. She did an amazing job with the narration. She has a great voice, with a great range of voices.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Long but so good!!

This book was so will written and I loved it all. The narrator did a great job. This is a book that will stay with you for a while.

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A story about the hardships of making bad choices.

“This story wasn’t at all what I expected. Alison isn’t a new author to me, I know her writing and development of the characters so I didn’t think twice about this book. First you need to know that this is a long and I really mean long story but every hour was so worth it. Till the end I got why the story needed to be that long. The Dance was such a deep emotional story. Kelli did an outstanding narration of this story. The emotions felt so real! A story about first love, friendship and the hardships of making bad choices. My heart ached for Bryson and her marriage but also I wanted so hard to punch her in the face. I kept staring at my ceiling while listening all she had to do and I really wanted to scream for the unequal roles in that marriage. Hart was the complete opposite of Will and to me he was a prince in shining armour, the way he treat Bryson was lovely. Sweetness at the highest levels!!! That twist!! Never expected it!!! Almost threw my earphones when I jumped after hearing that twist on the plot. I remember a quote I read long ago, honestly I don’t remember of whom but it said that people tend to be afraid of losing someone when in reality that person actually was never of them because it’s a fake love. Prepare yourself for an intense story with an emotional ending.”

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    5 out of 5 stars
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A heart felt romance

My heart literally broke for Bryson. So much lying and deceit! Will was truly a jerk! I did not like him from the start. The relationship he shared with Bryson just seemed so one sided. I definitely understand why she felt the way she did when she discovered his secret. He also didn’t even really own up to his mistakes. Then insert Hart and my heart swoon. I feel that Hart’s lifestyle was extremely different than Wills considering he wasn’t MARRIED! So Bryson really can’t really judge him on that aspect of his life. However once Bryson came back into his life his whole demeanor on relationships changed. Reading their love story unfold was so heartwarming. This is definitely a book that will have you in all your feels.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Long but emotionally riviting!

Yes, if you're looking at the book than you're noticing the nearly 17 hours of book. This is a book that makes you think. It's an emotionally-charged story. I recommend it and enjoyed listening to the story. However, there is a lot of story added in that wasn't pertinent to the story. I bet 1/4 of this book could have been removed and it would have hit 5 stars! It does have that possibilities it it didn't have the unnecessary added in.

The narrator Kelli Tager was a pleasure to listen to... I mean thank goodness at 17 hours! lol I enjoyed her slight twang/country accent... it's slight. She has a very endearing voice. I'd happily listen to her in future books.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Be prepared to commit, because this book is LONG!

I finished listening to The Dance a few days ago, and I've been struggling with what I want to say in my review. This is the first book I've read -- well, listened to -- by Alison G. Bailey, so I have absolutely no frame of reference for her writing. While I loved "the dance" that Bryson and Hart do throughout this book -- and to a lesser degree, the "dance" that she and Will end up doing -- I was so torn about the story itself and my feelings for Bryson as the lead character.

The fact that this book is nearly 17 hours long -- SERIOUSLY? 17 HOURS? -- could have had something to do with my frustration. There is SO MUCH drivel. Details that are mundane and have no bearing whatsoever on the story. Do we need to know what color leggins, socks, sneakers and tee shirt she's wearing to go do laundry? Do we need to know each step-by-step when she takes a bottle of wine out to have a drink by the pool? While I'm a big fan of wanting to be *shown* something in a story rather than told it happened, a reader can also assume certain things. You know, like the character walking into the kitchen, going to the cabinet, getting a wine glass, walking across the kitchen to the refrigerator, opening it up, grabbing a bottle of wine... we get the point! There was just SO MUCH of that, This book easily could have been half the length without the unnecessary minute details.

But back to the story itself. Was I supposed to be rooting for Will and Bryson, or Hart and Bryson? So much time was spent on her trying to save her marriage, but why? I knew that Hart was the real hero of this story, and I was getting so frustrated by the length of time it took her to get there! And Bryson is such a damn doormat when it comes to Will. I loved that Hart instilled the confidence in her to stand up for herself, but she just let Will walk all over her time and time again. And for as pissed as she was for what she considered Will's betrayal with his virtual life and porn addiction, she was the one who ended up being the cheater! Yes, their marriage was over for all intents and purposes, but they were still legally married. I also thought she was a hypocrite for not having issue with Hart's relationship with prostitutes, and how stupid was Bryson to not get herself tested if she thought Will was cheating on her?? She flipped out about that, but had let it go after he essentially raped her?

I don't know... the story had some good points. Hart was a gem. The dude had the patience of a saint when it came to Bryson's twisted relationship with Will. I loved how Hart and Bryson fit together, and his disability was a great non-issue to their relationship, but at the same time, made their relationship more interesting to me. Bryson really blossoms when she's with Hart, and there's really nice growth in her character. Because I didn't much like her until the very end.

There were no trigger warnings for this book, and it has a host of topics that could be problematic: miscarriage, AIDS, marital rape, depression, cheating, and many, many others. Details about the character ages and timelines didn't match up at times. The story had a lot of potential, but it wasn't executed well.

I received a complimentary download and voluntarily left a review.

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The dance of life

When I first saw the title, I thought this was going to be about a dancer. Then when I started the book, and we went to prom, I thought it was going to be about the dance. But I found out as I listened that this is about the dance of life. Bryson has her whole life mapped out for her. She marries her high school sweetheart and they are well on their way to creating their happiness. Only she didn't know the truth. Will is a man of appearances and while he likes Bryson, she is not the love of his life. When circumstances separate the two, Bryson is lucky enough to meet Hart. She knew him in high school and their attraction then still remains as strong years later. But will she find happiness with her second chance? This book had me frustrated, in love, happy, tearing and sad....every emotion you can think of, all signs of a great listen. Bryson both frustrated me and did me proud as she matured. She is a strong woman, much stronger than I thought and I love her compassion. Hart is the man we all want to end up with. He is passionate about life, knows what he wants and is caring and sympathetic. Will is the one that you love to hate, And end up loving. It's an unending dance and will fill your heart, empty and fill it again. Just keep that Tony Bennett playing and the dance never ends.

Kelli Tager delivers an amazing performance. This is my first narration by her and I thought she was spot on with every character. She has a variety of voices and melded each personality to each voice.I will be watching for more of her.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

angsty and emotional

I haven’t read a book by Alison G. Bailey in so long and I’ve really loved all of her books in the past so I jumped to listen to the audiobook when I saw it was available. I don’t know how I missed this release, but I was excited to get to it.

This book follows Bryson and it follows her from high school to her adult life. Bryson Walker is dating Will in high school and marries him after college. Things seem to be perfect between them, but after a few trials it’s apparent they’re anything but.

Will and Bryson don’t have a healthy relationship and something happens that brings an old flame back into her life. Hart is a guy she shared a moment with in high school. It was only a dance but it meant something to her. Now he’s back in her life, but the timing couldn’t be more… complicated. This isn’t the kind of love triangle you would expect but Bryson finds herself torn.

Though there were things I loved (mainly the last bit of the book) and that end truly evoked so much emotion for me, I found myself ragey throughout the book. There were times I didn’t love any of the characters for many different reasons, and by the end, my least favorite turned out to be one of my favorites. It was such a conflicting story for me. Also, I wish this was a little shorter and that a few things would have turned out differently, but it was so written and I love books that make me feel so I do have mixed feelings.

Overall, I’m glad I hung in there and made it to the end of this wild ride, because the ending truly was the best part. If you like angsty and emotional reads, give this one a try. It was definitely one of the more angsty books I’ve read lately!

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Emotional Read

I was sent this book from the publisher/publicity team. My ratings and reviews will be my own personal opinions and are in no way influenced by publishers or authors who may have sent me books to review. Initially from the cover, I thought that this story was going to involve dancing or a dancer. It does not. This follows “the dance” of life between Bryson and her husband Will. This is a full circle story that will break your heart. It touches on some very heartbreaking and sensitive subjects as well. I really loved the beginning of this story. There are triggers for emotional abuse, illness, and AIDS. This is a story about second chances, love, forgiveness, and so much more. It covers topics such as AIDs (as mentioned above) and a love interest in a wheelchair. These are both not seen in many romances I have read. It brought something new to romance reads. I was not expecting certain things to happen but really enjoyed the story overall. This was a little too detailed at times though. I think this could easily have been a four or five star read for me if it was around 100 pages less. There were parts that dragged on way too much, leaving the ending feeling rushed. The ending definitely builds within the story, but I also had the feeling that it just ended abruptly. Overall, this is an emotional story that is still worth the read.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Such a sweet southern Romance

This was my first story by Alison G. Bailey and I am impressed, I enjoyed the story line, There were some parts of the story I could have done without. I am glad I stuck with the story and listened to it to the end.


Kelly Tager did good as the narrator, There were some parts I did not particularly like, all in all the narrator has a nice sultry voice which keeps you drawn and wanting more.

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  • Gillek2
  • 01-14-20

Meant To Be!

From the time that Bryson was a teenager she had her life mapped out and that included a happy ever after with the first boy she ever dated, a family they would create together and a beautiful life. Ten years later after enduring a loss their marriage is fractured and she realizes that she doesn’t really know the man she married and what she believed was real was a lie.

Hart was a boy from her past that she never really had an opportunity to get to know but from their first meeting they were drawn to each other. He has a painful past of his own and as they both bear emotional scars from their life experiences their journey definitely had its challenges, but it is the evolution of all the characters in this book that will stick with you.

Will is a man you will love to hate, Hart is the embodiment of a man any woman would be lucky to have while Bryson learns what and who truly makes her happy. This is a second chance at a road not traveled with all the feels that go along with it. I received a complimentary copy of the audiobook and thought the narrator did a great job with all the voices she portrayed.

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  • Monica
  • 01-09-20

Emotionally gripping

A heartbreaking incident sets off a series of events that leads Bryson Forsyth to question the very basis of her marriage.

She crosses paths with Hart Mitchell, whom she shared one unforgettable dance with at the prom so many years ago, making her think that this be her second chance at a once-in-a-lifetime love.


The Dance is a story of forgiveness, redemption, and second chances.

I loved how Bryson grew from someone who’s never worked a day in her life and making up excuses to herself for Will’s shortcomings to becoming a strong, independent woman who isn’t afraid to go for what she wants.

I gasped when I got to the plot twist. How sorry I was for Will in the end, and how touched I was by the way he redeemed himself is a testament to how good a writer Alison G. Bailey is. This is the second book of hers that I’ve read, with Lip Smacker being the first. Lip Smacker was lighter (and shorter) than this one but both are emotionally gripping and awe-inspiring.


Narrator Kelli Tager did an excellent job bringing this book to life.


The Dance is a second-chance contemporary romance written in first -person narrative. It’s a standalone that ends with a HEA. No cliffhanger.

I received this audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this unbiased review.

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  • Mom Seeks Smut
  • 01-07-20

Beautiful coming of age

Wow. This story has my absolute heart.

It’s deep. It’s emotional. It’s an absolute rollercoaster.

Hero and heroine have one encounter early on in their lives that leaves both of them grasping for that kind of love again in their lives.

You find the story follow our heroine into adult years and follow this tragic story of everything you would expect to be perfect crumble around her. Over time she crosses paths with the hero now and then from a distance and with this wonder of what would have been her life.

When they finally cross paths they both realize not all things are as they appear. Without ruining this storyline and giving anything for the reader let me just say each of the characters in this story are real and deep. They each have their faults but they are all so human with their emotions. You can’t help but hate them and love them all the same.