Title: The Graces
Author: Laure Eve
Published: September 6th 2016 by Amulet Books
Genre: YA, Fantasy, Paranormal
My Rating: 4/ 5 stars
“Everyone said they were witches. I desperately wanted to believe it. I’d only been at this school a couple of months, but I saw how it was. They moved through the corridors like sleek fish, ripples in their wake, stares following their backs and their hair.”
Like everyone else in her town, River is obsessed with the Graces, attracted by their glamour and apparent ability to weave magic. But are they really what they seem? And are they more dangerous than they let on?
I think I went into The Graces expecting a whole lot of witchcraft and spell casting with a bit of a love story and self discovery. That’s not really what I got.
The Graces isn’t a tale of beautifully woven spells and a girl discovering the secrets that being a witch might hold.
It’s a bit darker than that.
River moves to a new town for a mysterious reason. She’s closed off, not only for those in the book, but for the reader as well. She’s hard to understand. Her main goal from page one is to get in with the alluring sibling trio, Summer, Thalia, and Fenrin Grace.
What ensues is a budding friendship as River weaves her way through the obsessive-like behavior of a teenage girl who will do everything in her power to become something she absolutely isn’t for the sake of the In Crowd.
It’s increasingly difficult to figure out her motives throughout the story, which is probably what gave me pause in giving this book full stars. We know that River finds fascination with the Graces for their apparent witchy connections, but why? From a first-person narrative, I feel like the guessing of the reader shouldn’t be that hard. We are in the MC’s head, we should get a front row seat to her motivations. But we really don’t.
It’s not until the end of the book that we see a truth inside of River and her reasonings for all of her behavior and mystery. It makes more sense after the last two chapters or so, which really upped my star rating. The rest of the book just made more sense, River made more sense, and I was able to piece everything together a bit better.
Apart from River being super hard to read, I do love the characters of the Graces. They are beautiful and enchanting. You can really feel the draw they have with people.
The language at times is also quite charming. In Fenrin and River’s more honest moments, the conversations take on a deep and whimsical feel that shows the darker side to living.
Overall, I did enjoy The Graces. It was a bit hard to figure out where the story was going, and I certainly would have liked more magic in a book that associates itself with witchcraft, but overall it was enjoyable.
If I’m correct, a second book might be in the making, which due to the last lines of the first book I will for sure be buying it. I know this book didn’t see many good reviews from what I saw on Goodreads, but give it a chance. Just don’t make assumptions about it, which I think a lot of people did, and you will actually enjoy it.
Guest review contributed by Fictional Living. Ashley provides reviews, recommendations, and soon to include more bookish writing. Also coming up are features of short story fiction writers once a week for a new blog series.