This was a creepy YA thriller that I do not recommend picking up late at night. You will stay up way past your bedtime reading this novel of messed up teenage girls forced into a life or death scenario. Learn from me, as I spent way too many nights reading past midnight.
The Grace Year is set in a society somewhat like a fundamentalist cult in the 1800s. Tierney is our main character, a middle child in a large family who is about to experience her “grace year.” The reader slowly figures out that when girls reach a certain age (right around puberty) they are selected for marriage by eligible boys (or not selected, meaning they will go into workhouses) but first they are sent to live in the wilderness together to purge their “magic” for a year. The girls have no idea what to expect during this year, as their mothers and sisters (those who returned at least) are forbidden to talk about what happens in the grace year. As the reader, we slowly understand what the grace year entails through Tierney’s eyes. The story is horrific at times, fast-paced, scary, but with a little bit of forbidden love sprinkled in for good measure.
I really liked this book and it captured me within the first chapter. The concept is nuts, with a little bit of A Handmaid’s Tale coupled with Lord of the Flies, plus Mean Girls for good measure. The Grace Year should be optioned for a Netflix movie, as I would watch this in a heartbeat. For some reason, I don’t think this book got a lot of buzz, so take a chance on this quick and thrilling read!
Some of my usual stats:
Finished on March 9, 2020 took 6 days to read
4 stars on Goodreads
Genre: YA, Thriller, Dystopian Future