Monday, May 24, 2010

Grace (YA)


Grace. Elizabeth Scott. 2010. September 2010. Penguin. 208 pages.

I'm afraid my hair is showing.

Grace almost left me speechless. Elizabeth Scott continues to amaze me. The author that makes me giddy with her teen romances leaves me haunted by such books as Grace and Living Dead Girl. (It's not that her romances lack substance or full characterization. All her characters feel human. And all her characters seem to be struggling with something.)

What is Grace about? Well this dystopian set in the near future stars Grace a girl who was "raised to be an Angel, a herald of death by suicide bomb." But Grace realizes--at the last moment--that this is not what she wants. And perhaps for the first time, she realizes that what she wants does matter.

She doesn't want to die for the cause. She's not even sure she believes in the cause anymore. (If she ever did.) She wants to live. But living life might be tricky because first she'll have to escape her old life.

Grace, when we first meet her, is on the run for her life. She's hoping and praying that she can escape. She's on a train heading for what could be her only chance for freedom, for a new life. But she's not traveling alone. She's traveling with a young man she's never met. A man she doesn't know if she can trust. As these two share their stories, share their pasts, quite a story unfolds.

Grace is a compelling read. I just couldn't put it down! It's a thought-provoking read too. I liked the way this one was told. How as Grace makes this journey to freedom, readers learn her back story bit by bit. We learn about the circumstances--political and social--that led her to where she is. I liked how Grace is challenged along the way to think and rethink her beliefs, her ethics.

I would definitely recommend this one.

© Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

4 comments:

Chris 7:58 PM  

Oh wow this sounds good Becky! I still haven't read any Elizabeth Scott and knowing how much you like her, I don't know why I haven't read her yet...you'd think I'd get with the game ;)

Shweta 8:23 AM  

I am such a fan of Scott and this is the second awesome review of Grace I have read in past few days.

The Book Chook 7:31 PM  

I don't know these books but you've intrigued me.

Adele 10:14 AM  

My brain kinda froze the moment I finished reading it. It really is a beautifully realised piece of work and I hope it gets the recognition that it deserves. Scott is one talented author.

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Review Policy

I am interested in reviewing books and audio books. This blog focuses on books written for middle grade on up (essentially 10 to a 110). I review middle grade fiction and young adult fiction (aka tween and teen).

I also review adult books.

I read in a variety of genres including realistic fiction, historical fiction, mystery, romance, science fiction, fantasy, literary fiction, and chick lit. (I've read one western to date.)

I read a few poetry books, a few short story collections, a few graphic novels, a few nonfiction books.

I am especially fond of:

  • Regency romances (including Austen prequels/sequels)
  • Historical fiction set in the Tudor dynasty
  • Historical fiction and nonfiction set during World War II
  • Jewish fiction/nonfiction
  • dystopias
  • apocalyptic fiction
  • science fiction (especially if it involves time travel and alternate realities)
  • fantasy
  • multicultural books and international books

I am not a fan of:

  • sports books
  • horse books
  • dog books if the dog dies (same goes with most pets actually except maybe fish)
  • westerns (if it's a pioneer story with women and children, then maybe)
  • extremely violent books with blood, blood, and more blood

I am more interested in strong characters, well-written, fleshed-out, human characters. Plot is secondary to me in a way. I have to care about the characters in order to care about the plot. That being said, compelling storytelling is something that I love. I love to become absorbed in what I'm reading.

If you're interested in sending me a review copy of your book, I'm happy to hear from you. Email me at laney_po AT yahoo DOT com.

You should know several things before you contact me:

1) I do not guarantee a review of your book. I am just agreeing to consider it for review.
2) I give all books at least fifty pages.
3) I am not promising anyone (author or publisher) a positive review in exchange for a review copy. That's not how I work.
4) In all of my reviews I strive for honesty. My reviews are my opinions--so yes, they are subjective--you should know my blog will feature both negative and positive reviews.
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