The most prestigious ballroom dance competition in the United States.
Two dancers need to win.
Only one can.
Nina Fortunova wasn’t supposed to end up almost thirty, divorced, with her dreams of winning shattered. She teams up with Jorge Gonzalez, a hunky and hard-working Latin dancer, to reinvent the flashy Smooth style.
When the Chairman of the Judges offers to throw the competition in their favor, Nina must decide how far she will go to win, even if it means losing Jorge.
Carly Martindale is doing everything she’s been taught not to do—placing her happiness first by dancing with Trey Devereux, the former champion who’s returned to competition for mysterious reasons.
Carly falls deeply in love with Trey, but beneath his good looks and Southern manners lay a tortured soul. She allows him to control her every move at great risk to her emotional health. How far will Carly go, so Trey and she can win?
Co-workers, then friends, and now arch competitors, Nina and Carly face off to determine who will be the winner—in love and in dancing.
Bright, emotive, and told through dual narrators, The Winner examines the costs associated with winning, the internalization of parental ambition, and the effect of gendered roles on and off the dance floor.
The Winner is a literary romance that’s perfect for readers who love Dancing with the Stars, Strictly Come Dancing, So You Think You Can Dance, and the classic elegance of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers.
The Winner contains a fact-versus-fiction section at the end.
“Educational, enjoyable, and engrossing”
Midwest Book Review
“The Winner is a winner”
“Rousing, bittersweet, and heartbreakingly beautiful”
“Allows the novice to discover the world of ballroom dance, the professional to get reacquainted with similar experiences, and both to follow a game of love and ambition through the lens of dancing”