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    In Other Spaces and Places



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    « New Fiendish Review: Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins | Main | New Fiendish Review: Matched by Ally Condie »

    New Fiendish Review: Grace by Elizabeth Scott

    Book:                Grace

    Author:             Elizabeth Scott

    Publisher:         Dutton|Penguin

    ISBN/ASIN:       9780525422068

    Release Date:    September 16, 2010

    Rating:   3.75 Stars

    Buy: | Amazon | B&N | Borders | Powell’s | Indiebound |

    Find out more about Elizabeth Scott.

    Grace is unsettling in its depiction of a futuristic totalitarian government-its people managed by a maniacal puppeteer. The unsettling part is though Elizabeth Scott places her story in the near future it more uncannily resembles present day-and with it, all the raw intensity of nitro glycerin.

     Spartan in its description-spare and hollow, and forcing the reader to hunt for the plot, Grace is the tale of a young girl destined to be a tool for The People and their insurgent group, the Rories. Not her people. As an outcast and even ostracized by her own family, Grace is destined to be an Angel-a suicide bomber. Reluctantly.

    After botching her suicide mission, Grace finds herself on a ramshackle train loaded with Keran Berj’s soldiers on a treacherous journey. The only thing in front of her is the warped train track through a scorching desert, and the stranger she travels with to an uncertain future-and the possibility of being caught and subject to a hideous public execution.

    As the fist of dictator Keran Berj slowly chokes the life of his constituents, he forces them to walk a high wire of impossible tasks that change daily-for his amusement. This season the law is that women should cut their hair. Last season they were to have it long. He has outlawed the press. No one is allowed to gesture with their left hand. Eyes furtively watching everything. There is no place to hide.

    Grace is so full of despair, resembling a flickering light that is close to going out. The only redeeming factor is Scott has managed to inject hope at the bitter end and through the commiseration between Grace and Jerusha. Her words though sparse, pack a powerful punch-Grace is indeed a moving story, uncomfortably so…but devoid of all the traits that would enable a reader to relate to its lead. What would draw us to Grace? Is it her reluctance to live a life that was planned out for her? Or is it her apathy at botching her mission, but still taking out a few citizens? Or is it her festering question that there is more out there, underneath the layers of programming, there is something that is infinitely her?

    Whatever it is that draws us to Grace she will not likely be forgotten.

    A Fiendishly Bookish Review (and one grumpy cat). 

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