Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Review: "Saving Grace" by Jane Green

Grace and Ted Chapman are living the picture perfect life. Ted is a bestselling author, and Grace is the perfect "woman behind the man". She is a stylish homemaker and she is very involved with the local woman's shelter. What those on the outside can't see, though, are Ted's sudden rages and his explosive temper. When Ted's longtime assistant, who has been the calm in the storm for years, has to leave to attend family issues, Grace quickly finds her calm and organized life falling apart around her. When capable and demure Beth arrives on the scene through a series of coincidences she takes over around the house and order is restored to the Chapman household. Grace has a feeling that something is not quite right, though, and she soon begins to fear that there is more to Beth than there appears to be. Could it be that this new addition to their household could cost Grace her sanity, her marriage, and her life as she knows it?

Saving Grace surprised me. I've read many of Jane Green's books over the years and I have enjoyed them all and Saving Grace was different from many of her previous releases. There was a psychological aspect present that hasn't been in her previous books and I found myself enjoying that. For fear of giving away too much I won't elaborate, but I can say that this was one of those books that I found myself thinking about when I wasn't reading it. Sometimes I'm reading a book and I don't think about it again until I have the time to pick it back up, but for a portion of the book I had no idea what was going to happen next and I couldn't wait to find out.

There were a few things about the book that I found myself particularly enjoying. As I mentioned above, the psychological and suspenseful nature of the book was very enjoyable to me. It reminded me at times of a much milder version of Gone Girl in the sense that Grace's head is being played with. I enjoyed the character of Grace very much and, especially in the beginning, I found myself relating to her. The writing was on par with all of Jane Green's writing, it flowed and it kept me interested.

I did find two things about the book that I would have liked to have seen expanded on for the sake of the reader. I found that Ted's tempers were never really addressed. It seemed to me that at the beginning of the book he his wicked tempers were described and then they quickly faded into the background. There was also one plot point that really bothered me that I can't elaborate on without spoiling the plot for others. However I can say that Grace made a promise to someone and then it was never followed through on or mentioned again. That was certainly frustrating as I thought that it would have helped to accentuate a great conclusion!

Overall I thoroughly enjoyed reading Saving Grace. It was different from Jane Green's previous novels, but similar enough that longtime fans will certainly find themselves enjoying it as well. The plot was engaging and interesting and there were a few current issues tackled within the pages that made it relevant to the world that we live in. My thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for providing me with a review copy.

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