But Noelle’s a worrier, and she knows it won’t be easy for her family to put up the money to send her to the competition. She tries to focus on her training, but when a boy asks her to the school dance, her mind is a whirlwind of dresses, crushes, and family responsibilities. Noelle knows that if she wants to achieve her Olympic dreams, she can’t let anything get in the way. Her teammates—graceful Christina, quiet Jessie, and lively Britt—can’t wait for the trip to Junior Nationals in Philadelphia, and Noelle doesn’t want to let them down.
Do you know a girl who loves gymnastics? In the past year my almost nine-year-old daughter has become somewhat enamored with the sport. Although she doesn’t want to try it herself, she loves to watch it, and now, read about it too!
Balancing Act by former Olympic gold medalist Dominique Moceanu and Alicia Thompson is a part of the Go for Gold Gymnasts series and follows very talented twelve-year-old gymnast Noelle Onesti, who dreams of winning a gold medal at the Olympics someday, as she learns to balance gymnastics, family, and regular life. As an Elite gymnast, Noelle is supposed to the Junior National Championships and hopes to win a gold medal, but money is really tight for her family and she’s afraid to even bring the subject up. At the same time she’s feeling distracted by a school dance, crushes, and problems at home. Life is complicated for Noelle, but in the end, her family and team mates come through for her in a big way!
My daughter and both enjoyed this book. She loved the story and the fact that the characters in Balancing Act are realistic and relatable, they’re like “real girls” as she said. I like that the book deals with real life issues that any girl, not just a gymnast, goes through. The characters aren’t perfect and they don‘t lead charmed lives, but they find that even when they make mistakes, they have family and friends who love, support and believe in them. That’s something that every girl needs to hear!