Saving Grace By Jane Green
[amazon_link id=”1447272757″ target=”_blank” ][/amazon_link]’Saving Grace’ is the latest book by Jane Green.
Grace Chapman has the perfect life, living comfortably with her husband, bestselling author Ted, in a picture-perfect farmhouse on the Hudson River in New York State Then Ted advertises for a new assistant, and Beth walks into their lives. Organized, passionate and eager to learn, Beth quickly makes herself indispensable to Ted and his family. But Grace soon begins to feel side-lined in her home – and her marriage – by this ambitious younger woman. Is Grace just paranoid, as her husband tells her, or is there more to Beth than first thought?
Jane Green is one of my favourite authors and I was delighted to receive a copy of her brand new book ‘Saving Grace’. Beautifully illustrated in soft shades of green and red, the book is most striking and definitely stands out on the shelves.
The story is written in the third person and is seen from the perspective of Grace, who is married to Ted. A once successful and bestselling author, who took the world by storm with his writing but now his writing isn’t as popular and he’s replaced by younger and fancier writers. Ted is everything that I dislike in a man, to the outside world and the press, he’s charismatic and approachable but behind closed doors, he’s arrogant, demanding and not quite the man Grace believed that she was marrying.
Grace had a hard life with her mother growing up, her mother battled mental illness, leaving Grace constantly on edge and this has developed further into adulthood. Particularly now that Ted’s assistant has left and Grace has been left on charge of his tasks and demands. It’s only when Grace and Ted meet Beth at an event, that Grace sees light at the end of the tunnel and immediately hires Beth to become Ted’s assistant. Grace is delighted that someone else is in charge and she can carry on with her first love which is cooking. But over time she sees a change in Beth, she begins to dress and behave like Grace and intent to step into Grace’s shoes even if Grace doesn’t want her to.
This book is a very dark story, gone are the days of love and romance, this story is about a woman jealous of another woman’s life and determined to wreck no matter the circumstances.
Grace is a strong leading lady even though she had a tough upbringing, she looks on the bright side of life and wants to help those less well off then herself, but she does let Ted walk all over her which is annoying. She worries about herself, that she will turn out like her mother and has kept her troubled childhood from Ted. Through the book, there are flashbacks to Grace’s past which gives us an insight to her life. Only one person really knows what her upbringing was like and that’s Robert, her best friends brother who she grew up with and who had a crush on her. As a teenager Grace spent her time in the middle of Robert’s family, she loved the hustle and bustle of his house and particularly his mother Lydia who made Grace feel like part of the family.
Beth is an interesting role, she seems perfect and sweet but we rapidly see a sinister side to her once she settles into new job and this can make for unsettling reading as she causes Grace to question her sanity.
Although this book is completely different to Jane’s previous stories, I did enjoy it and found myself absorbed in Grace’s life and urging her to sort it out. As Grace is a chef, there is the inclusion of recipes throughout the story in reference to the meals that she is creating. I did think it was a bit odd including this in quite a dark story.
My only complaint is that I thought the ending to the story was a bit too abrupt and that did leave me wondering “What now?”
An interesting story and a new direction for the author that does leave the reader wanting but sadly I felt it was not Jane at her best.
You can buy [amazon_link id=”1447272757″ target=”_blank” ]Saving Grace from Amazon[/amazon_link] and is available to buy from good bookshops.