HomeGroupsTalkMoreZeitgeist
Search Site
This site uses cookies to deliver our services, improve performance, for analytics, and (if not signed in) for advertising. By using LibraryThing you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your use of the site and services is subject to these policies and terms.

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

Loading...

Illusions of Camelot

by Peter Boal

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations
2621888,748 (3.78)None
Written by a former principal dancer for the New York City Ballet, Peter Boal's memoir, Illusions of Camelot, starts in the pastoral and privileged town of Bedford, New York: a rare enclave where private schools, country clubs, and families hold their own rules and secrets. Within the town, views of race, morality, and sexuality are unspoken yet evident. Meanwhile, at home, Peter and his family are left to grapple with his father's alcoholism and untimely death. As a young boy finding his way, Peter soon turns to ballet. Ultimately his passion becomes a beacon, leading him to work at the New York City Ballet as a teenager, living on his own while discovering the pitfalls and pleasures Manhattan has to offer. Throughout Peter's deeply personal work, you'll step onto the floor during ballroom dancing lessons in Bedford, into the studios of the School of American Ballet at Lincoln Center, and onto the stage in George Balanchine's The Nutcracker as Peter performs the title role of the Nutcracker Prince. Peter's journey takes us to the start of a storied career as a dancer and leaves us with insights into the life of an artist shaped by environment, circumstance, and family.… (more)
None
Loading...

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

Showing 1-5 of 21 (next | show all)
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I loved this book! It follows a student and teacher of ballet. I went in not having any prior knowledge of ballet other than it's limited to those people with access to money. Mr. Baol's family fit that mold perfectly. From there I assumed that the only problems the family would have would be unrelatable to an average family. That was not the case. From bullying to drug use, alcohol consumption to theft; this book covered all of it. The writing was amazing and kept me wanting to read. ( )
  Reader1999 | Jan 24, 2024 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I wasn’t sure if I’d be able to relate to, or appreciate, Illusions of Camelot: A Memoir by Peter Boal. I know nothing about ballet, nor has my life been anything like the author's. But, I was interested because I’ve been loving memoirs recently and I have appreciated reading about subjects I know nothing about. Boal quickly pulled me in and I enjoyed this book.
I have found that if a memoir is well-written, you don’t have to “know” the author or industry—the author introduces you to it. Boal succeeded. This is a memoir about HIM, not about ballet. Well done.
Boal grew up more than privileged; he grew up rich. He recognizes that and he doesn’t boast about what he “had” or where he lived. He details and explains, but there’s no bragging involved. A majority of the book recounts his childhood, and he makes the reader part of it. I felt like I knew his family. Boal brought me into his joy, pain, sadness, love, and torment. I love reading childhood memoirs. I can only hope that the adult expresses emotion and thought as experienced while a child… not how the adult has processed them.
My marketing criticism: in my opinion, the book description and cover don’t match the book content. They made me think this was going to be centered around Boal as a dancer; however, it’s a memoir about a privileged white boy who is also an exceptional dancer. If you’re a person who likes memoirs of an individual’s childhood and the forces that developed the adult, you’ll be pleasantly surprised. If you want a memoir about Boal’s life as a dancer, you may be disappointed. I may have missed it, but I have no idea what the book title refers to or why it was chosen.
My editing criticism: I found a few moments confusing as they were out of chronological order, but it wasn’t explained that “we’re jumping back/forward a bit”.
I enjoyed this book and recommend it to people (like I stated) who like memoirs about the person, not so much about the person’s success, or for people who want to learn more about Peter Boal’s life.
My appreciation to Peter Boal and Beaufort Books for the LibraryThing Early Reviewers printed copy. ( )
  Crazinss | Dec 31, 2023 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I requested this book as an Early Reviewer and was quite pleased to receive it as I too grew up in Bedford, albeit 20 years earlier. And I suppose Bedford has changed; after all Martha Stewart now lives there. Nevertheless, there were mansions then, and rich people, but I grew very tired of his generalizations about the town and its residents, and his continued emphasis on wealth. For example: "The money crowd was small at Fox Lane [my high school], but they found each other by their BMWs . . ." I wonder how he knows, given that he went to Rippowam (yes, a ritzy private school).

This is all carping, and feels ungenerous, but it does capture the annoyance I felt. Some scrupulous editing would have helped greatly. I realize it was written as a series of short stories, which is fine, but they should have been rearranged to cut out the repetition and to make the whole book less disjointed. And, as many reviewers have written, we all wanted to hear more about dance. The focus on the difficulties of growing up with an alcoholic father is understandable - it shaped his life. But how did dance, which after all began when he was just nine? Was it an escape? Was the control required the opposite of what he witnessed each night with his father?

I watched some short videos of Boal's dancing and it was exquisite. I just wish his writing could have measured up. ( )
  bobbieharv | Oct 14, 2023 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
A heartfelt memoir about the life of Peter Boal, the former principal dancer of the New York City Ballet. Rather than chronological order, this book is written in short vignettes and, for the most part, encompasses his life from early childhood to young adult as part of a privileged but imperfect family.

Beautifully written, but left me wanting to know more about his dance career. Perhaps a sequel will be forthcoming. ( )
  pinklady60 | Oct 5, 2023 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
although well written, I couldn't finish this book. I didn't have much interest in the childhood of a privileged white kid growing up in a priveleged nieghborhood, ( )
  martingayle | Sep 19, 2023 |
Showing 1-5 of 21 (next | show all)
no reviews | add a review
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
People/Characters
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Epigraph
Dedication
First words
Quotations
Last words
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Blurbers
Original language
Canonical DDC/MDS
Canonical LCC

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English

None

Written by a former principal dancer for the New York City Ballet, Peter Boal's memoir, Illusions of Camelot, starts in the pastoral and privileged town of Bedford, New York: a rare enclave where private schools, country clubs, and families hold their own rules and secrets. Within the town, views of race, morality, and sexuality are unspoken yet evident. Meanwhile, at home, Peter and his family are left to grapple with his father's alcoholism and untimely death. As a young boy finding his way, Peter soon turns to ballet. Ultimately his passion becomes a beacon, leading him to work at the New York City Ballet as a teenager, living on his own while discovering the pitfalls and pleasures Manhattan has to offer. Throughout Peter's deeply personal work, you'll step onto the floor during ballroom dancing lessons in Bedford, into the studios of the School of American Ballet at Lincoln Center, and onto the stage in George Balanchine's The Nutcracker as Peter performs the title role of the Nutcracker Prince. Peter's journey takes us to the start of a storied career as a dancer and leaves us with insights into the life of an artist shaped by environment, circumstance, and family.

No library descriptions found.

Book description
Haiku summary

LibraryThing Early Reviewers Alum

Peter Boal's book Illusions of Camelot: A Memoir was available from LibraryThing Early Reviewers.

Current Discussions

None

Popular covers

Quick Links

Rating

Average: (3.78)
0.5
1 1
1.5
2 2
2.5
3 2
3.5 3
4 6
4.5
5 6

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.

 

About | Contact | Privacy/Terms | Help/FAQs | Blog | Store | APIs | TinyCat | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | Common Knowledge | 204,374,533 books! | Top bar: Always visible