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The Grace Year Review: Back-of-Book Description

The instant New York Times bestseller, Kim Liggett’s The Grace Year is a speculative YA thriller in the vein of The Hunger Games and The Power, now in trade paperback.

 

No one speaks of the grace year. It’s forbidden.

 

In Garner County, girls are banished for their sixteenth year to release their magic into the wild so they can return purified and ready for marriage.

 

But not all of them will make it home alive.

 

Tierney James dreams of a better life―but as her own grace year draws near, she quickly realizes that there’s more to fear about the grace year than the brutal elements and the poachers in the woods.

 

Their greatest threat may very well be each other.

 

With sharp prose and gritty realism, Liggett’s The Grace Year examines the complex and sometimes twisted relationships between girls, the women they eventually become, and the difficult decisions they make in-between.

The Grace Year Review: My Thoughts

One of the loveliest people I know and my dearest friend gave me a super cool birthday gift last year – twelve blind date books! One book for each month of the year, wrapped up individually so I wouldn’t know what it was until that particular month. It was awesome and you should totally do that for someone!

Anyways, the March book in this cool gift was The Grace Year! She did give a spoiler and wrote “Dystopian Fiction” on the outside wrapping, so I already new I was going to be excited about it.

This was the first book in that cool calendar of surprises that I dove into right away, and I am so glad I did.

My initial thoughts were a little apprehensive, what with the mentions of “magic” and whatnot. I wasn’t sure if I could handle a Young Adult book that was also fantasy (yeah, I never read Harry Potter and no, it’s not my scene). But I quickly got passed that and gave the story a chance.

I loved the way the author introduced all the weird, historical fiction/dystopian elements of the world these people lived in. The characters were also interesting and complex. There were various complicated relationships as well between all of them. The dialogue between characters was well-written and contributed positively to the story, too.

The settings were easy to picture and there were a lot of references to flowers, which I found kind of cool. Part of the setting in a way, was the clothing described. It also played a part in the story in interesting ways.

The writing in general was just really good and the plot was great. It blended historical fiction and dystopia in a cool way. I can honestly see this getting made into a movie or mini-series – I think it would do well on the screen.

Favorite Quotes from The Grace Year:

“…what at first seemed like harmless tasks turned into something infinitely more dangerous. But isn’t that how every horrible thing begins? Slow. Insipid. A twisting of the screw.”

“When the ‘magic’ wears off, when the memories come pouring in, how will they be able to make peace with what happened here? The horror we inflicted on one another.”

“It feels like freedom, but we know it’s a lie. This is how they break us. They take everything away, our very dignity, and anything we get in return feels like a gift.”

“Desperately trying to remember, but blessed to forget.”

“That’s the problem with letting the light in—after it’s been taken away from you, it feels even darker than it was before.”

“…it’s the small decisions you make when no one else is watching that make you who you are. Who do you want to be?”

“It’s easy to think of your life as meaningless out here, a tiny forgotten imprint that can easier be washed away by the next passing storm, but instead of making me feel small, it gives everything more purpose, more meaning. I’m no more or less important than a small seedling trying to burst through the soil. We all play a part on this earth. And however small, I intend to play mine.”

“A heart with walls so tall that it slowly suffocates, choking on its own secrets.”

 

The Grace Year Review: In Conclusion

This book was so good! It took me a while to get on board and it is technically a Young Adult book (which I didn’t think was a genre I would enjoy) but I have to say…4.5 stars! There was a lot of emotion and suspense, coupled with some terrific writing and imagery. 

I would read another book by this author for sure. And I would recommend The Grace Year to anyone looking for a dystopian thriller or a complicated world of relationships and self-growth. 

Would make a great gift for a young woman…or any woman at all maybe. 

Thank you for taking the time to read this review of The Grace Year – feel free to share! Check out my other book reviews here and pin or share your favorite quotes below. 

“That’s the problem with letting the light in—after it’s been taken away from you, it feels even darker than it was before.”
“…what at first seemed like harmless tasks turned into something infinitely more dangerous. But isn’t that how every horrible thing begins? Slow. Insipid. A twisting of the screw.”
"how will they be able to make peace with what happened here? The horror we inflicted on one another.”
“It feels like freedom, but we know it’s a lie. This is how they break us. They take everything away, our very dignity, and anything we get in return feels like a gift.”
“Desperately trying to remember, but blessed to forget.”
“It’s easy to think of your life as meaningless out here, a tiny forgotten imprint that can easier be washed away by the next passing storm, but instead of making me feel small, it gives everything more purpose, more meaning. I’m no more or less important than a small seedling trying to burst through the soil. We all play a part on this earth. And however small, I intend to play mine.”
“…it’s the small decisions you make when no one else is watching that make you who you are. Who do you want to be?”
“A heart with walls so tall that it slowly suffocates, choking on its own secrets.”
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