No one speaks of the grace year. It’s forbidden.
In Garner County, girls are banished for their sixteenth year to release their magic into the wild so they can return purified and ready for marriage.
But not all of them will make it home alive.
Tierney James dreams of a better life—but as her own grace year draws near, she quickly realizes that there’s more to fear about the grace year than the brutal elements and the poachers in the woods.
Their greatest threat may very well be each other.
With sharp prose and gritty realism, Kim Liggett's The Grace Year examines the complex and sometimes twisted relationships between girls, the women they eventually become, and the difficult decisions they make in-between.
"Beautiful, devastating, and deeply moving, The Grace Year is a testament to the power of finding your voice and speaking your truth. This story of hope and resistance reminds us of what authoritarians and strongmen throughout history have always feared—that a single light in the darkness calls all other lights to shine, that a lone whisper can give rise to a thundering chorus. This haunting, lyrical book is required reading, full stop."—Samira Ahmed, New York Times-bestselling author of Internment and Love, Hate & Other Filters
"A visceral, darkly haunting fever dream of a novel and an absolute page-turner. Liggett's deeply suspenseful book brilliantly explores the high cost of a misogynistic world that denies women power and does it with a heart-in-your-throat, action-driven story that's equal parts horror-laden fairy tale, survival story, romance, and resistance manifesto. I couldn't stop reading."—Libba Bray, The New York Times bestselling author of The Diviners and A Great and Terrible Beauty
"A dark fairy tale of a book that speaks to the time that we live in."—Kelly Link, author of Get In Trouble
"The Grace Year seethes with love and brutality, violence and hope. It is a remarkable and timely story of the bonds between women, the cost of breaking those bonds, and the courage it takes to defy a patriarchy intent on crushing feminine strength."—Sabaa Tahir, #1 New York Times bestselling author of An Ember in the Ashes
"The Grace Year is a book for every woman who has ever screamed at the top of her lungs and still felt like no one heard her. A book for every person who has ever been made to feel small or less than. A book for all of us who have been told to sit down and be silent, to grin and bear."—Jasmine Warga, internationally bestselling author of My Heart and Other Black Holes and Other Words for Home
"It is a top ten book of the year for sure and maybe the best YA novel this year. If you like The Handmaid's Tale and Vox, this book is for you."—Red Carpet Crash
"Liggett's immersive storytelling effortlessly weaves horror elements with a harrowing and surprising survival story. Profound moments lie in small details, and readers' hearts will race and break right along with the brave, capable Tierney's. The biggest changes often begin with the smallest rebellions, and the emotional conclusion will resonate. Chilling, poignant, haunting, and unfortunately, all too timely."—Kirkus Review (starred review)
Reviews from Goodreads
I follow her through the woods, a well-worn path I’ve seen a thousand times. Ferns, lady-slipper, and thistle, the mysterious red flowers dotting the path. Five petals, perfectly formed, like they were made just for us....