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We hope this review was both interesting and useful. Please share it with family and friends who would benefit from it as well.

Book Review

Dancing Queen by Kelly Starling Lyons has been reviewed by Focus on the Family’s marriage and parenting magazine. It is the fourth book in the “Jada Jones” series.

Positive Elements

Spiritual Content

Sexual Content

Violent Content

Crude or Profane Language

Drug and Alcohol Content

Other Negative Elements


Pro-social Content

Objectionable Content

Summary Advisory

Plot Summary

Jada, as a member of student council, has the job of reading the suggestions students give to the group. The suggestion box holds only one request: the need for coats. Jada remembers when her father was laid off from his job and her family didn’t have enough money for coats.

The student council decides to hold a school dance. They want students to get people to pledge a donation for every dance the students dance. Everyone is excited about this fundraiser — except for Jada. She isn’t a gifted dancer and doesn’t want others to observe how she dances.

Jada tries to learn a few dance steps. Her little brother, Jackson, teaches her how to do some of the moves properly, and then he mentions to his parents that Jada can’t dance. Their mother, an avid dancer, tries to teach Jada, but Jada grows discouraged. Later her father shows her that he also can’t dance well. He encourages Jada to find the beat and simply be herself.

The next day at school, everyone seems excited for the school dance. In gym class and at recess, kids practice their dance steps. Jada chooses to sit off to the side and watch. She finds another girl, Hallie, sitting there. The two begin talking, and she and Hallie become friends, bonding over their shared inability to dance, among other things.

Jada researches dancing at the library and decides to try and use the game “Just Dance” to help herself grow and learn how to find the beat of songs. Her family and friends encourage her in this endeavor.

To help the fundraiser, Jada empties her savings and prepares to go coat shopping with her mother to find the perfect coat to donate. The one she finds costs twice as much as what she has, but her mother encourages her generosity by making up the difference. Jada is not the only generous student at her school. The donation bins for coats quickly fill. She also asks her parents, baby-sitter, grandparents and others to pledge money for every dance she dances.

The day of the dance finally arrives, and Jada’s friends and family attend to support the endeavor. Because of her desire to do all she can to help, Jada dances every dance. The fundraiser successfully raises over $4,000 for coats, and Jada and the other members of student council celebrate.

Christian Beliefs


Other Belief Systems


Authority Roles

Ms. Flowers, Jada’s teacher, greatly encourages Jada to show kindness. She wears a T-shirt with a different encouraging slogan every day and hangs posters in her classroom of people who made a difference. At the end of the story, Ms. Flowers hangs a picture of the student council on that wall.

Jada’s mother and father encourage her to persevere. Her father expresses empathy, showing her how much he understands her frustration at the minimal dancing abilities she possesses. Her mother tries to teach her how to dance better and encourages her generosity and kindness by contributing to the coat drive herself.





Discussion Topics

Get free discussion questions for this book and others, at FocusOnTheFamily.com/discuss- books.

Additional Comments/Notes

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Book reviews cover the content, themes and worldviews of fiction books, not their literary merit, and equip parents to decide whether a book is appropriate for their children. The inclusion of a book's review does not constitute an endorsement by Focus on the Family.

Episode Reviews



Readability Age Range

6 to 8


Kelly Starling Lyons






Record Label



Penguin Workshop, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC


On Video

Year Published





We hope this review was both interesting and useful. Please share it with family and friends who would benefit from it as well.

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