Monday, 15 December 2014

Review: Saving Grace by Jane Green

Grace and Ted Chapman are widely regarded as the perfect literary power couple. Ted is a successful novelist and Grace, his wife of twenty years, is beautiful, stylish, carefree, and a wonderful homemaker. But what no one sees, what is churning under the surface, is Ted’s rages. His mood swings. And the precarious house of cards that their lifestyle is built upon. When Ted’s longtime assistant and mainstay leaves, the house of cards begins to crumble and Grace, with dark secrets in her past, is most vulnerable. She finds herself in need of help but with no one to turn to…until the perfect new assistant shows up out of the blue.  To the rescue comes Beth, a competent young woman who can handle Ted and has the calm efficiency to weather the storms that threaten to engulf the Chapman household. Soon, though, it’s clear to Grace that Beth might be too good to be true. This new interloper might be the biggest threat of all, one that could cost Grace her marriage, her reputation, and even her sanity.  With everything at stake and no one to confide in, Grace must find a way to save herself before it is too late.

Powerful and riveting, Saving Grace will have you on the edge of your seat as you follow Grace on her harrowing journey to rock bottom and back.

Hardcover, 352 pages
Expected publication: December 30th 2014 by St. Martin's Press
Terri's Thoughts

I won a copy of this book in a giveaway on Goodreads in exchange for an honest review.  The expected publication date is December 30th.

This was one of those really frustrating reads for me.  Not because the writing was bad, because it wasn't, or because the plot was poor because it was good.  It was because as the reader you can see exactly where the story is heading but you are helpless to stop it from going there.  Similar to when you are watching a horror movie and you know that the bad guy is behind the door and you are yelling for the character to not open the door and they still do despite all of your protests.

The relationship between Grace and Ted was certainly dysfunctional from the very beginning.  I found Grace very weak to put up with Ted's garbage and wasn't sure I would be able to stick with a story where the main character didn't have a back-bone.  Enter Beth and this is where the story got interesting.

Although the damage Beth inflicted almost seemed to occur off of the pages you could see exactly where the plot was heading.  With it, Grace was redeemed slightly in my eyes.  The only thing I had a hard time getting past was as Grace was fighting to get her life back she was also wanting her husband back.  With everything that had happened I could not understand why she would want him back in her life.  He had no redeeming qualities to speak of.  I do feel that this was intentional to take the reader to the ultimate conclusion of the story yet every time she said she wanted her husband back I wanted to scream.

This was a very easy read.  I was finished reading it on no time.  While I cannot really pinpoint what genre I would consider it I think it has the ability to appeal to the masses.  I enjoyed it.

About the Author

 former feature writer for the Daily Express in the UK, Green took a leap in faith when she left, in 1996, to freelance and work on a novel. Seven months later, there was a bidding war for her first book, Straight Talking, the saga of a single career girl looking for the right man. The novel was an immediate top-ten bestseller in England, and Green was an overnight success.

Now in her forties, Green has graduated to more complex, character-driven novels that explore the concerns of real women's lives, from marriage (The Other Woman) to motherhood (Another Piece of My Heart) to divorce, stepchildren, affairs, and most recently, midlife crises (Family Pictures and Tempting Fate).

She joined the ABC News team to write A Modern Fairytale - their first enhanced digital book - about the history of Royal marriages, then joined ABC News Radio as a live correspondent covering Prince William's wedding to Kate Middleton. She has written a micro-series for Dove starring Alicia Keyes, many short stories, and has contributed to various anthologies, as well as regularly appearing on television shows including Good Morning America, The Martha Stewart show, and The Today Show.

Together with writing books and blogs, she contributes to various publications, both online and print, including Huffington Post, The Sunday Times, Cosmopolitan and Self, has taught at writers conferences, and does regular keynote speaking.

A foodie and passionate cook, Green filled one of her books, Promises to Keep, with recipes culled from her own collection. She says she only cooks food that is “incredibly easy, but has to look as if you have slaved over a hot stove for hours.” This is because she has six children, and has realised that “when you have six children, nobody ever invites you anywhere.”

Most weekends see her cooking for a minimum of twenty people in her home in Westport, Connecticut, where she lives with her husband and their blended family. When she is not writing, cooking, gardening, filling her house with friends and herding chickens, she is usually thanking the Lord for caffeine-filled energy drinks.

Twitter:  JaneGreen


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