Book: Grace and Fury
Author: Tracy Banghart
Year published: 2019
- Plot: 2/5
- Characters: 2.5/5
- Writing: 4/5
- Overall: 2.5/5
Grace and Fury was an incredibly slow paced book about a world where women have no rights and no voice. To be bluntly honest, I didn’t enjoy it much.
The story revolved around two sisters- Serina and Nomi.
Ever since she was a child, Serina had been training to be a Grace to the heir to the throne. Her goal was to be the supposedly ‘perfect model’ of how a women should be: obedient, graceful, subservient and beautiful. Like an object on display, a pretty vase of flowers on a shelf. One of the things she had to learn how to do was become a living statue and stand very still on a pedestal in extravagant poses during special events. That was her plan, until she was sent to a women’s prison for the ‘crime’ of reading a book (something that she didn’t even do) where she had to learn to fight for her survival on an island full of women who had lost too much and bled from many scars.
Nomi was Serina’s younger sister and at the start of the book was the complete opposite to her. She had a fiery soul and thought that women deserved better treatment and should be allowed the same rights as men. She also learnt how to read even though it wasn’t allowed. She hated the idea of Graces, how they were chosen even if it was against their wills. But then she was chosen to be a Grace instead of Serina. Instead of fighting for her survival she ended up untangling court intrigue and being weaved into plots involving the Heir (Malachai) and his younger brother (Asa).
Despite my low rating I did like how at the beginning I assumed Serina was ‘grace’ and Nomi was ‘fury’ but then my expectations were completely reversed.
The characters were as flat as a paper snowflake and the plot was as unrealistic as a pigeon tap dancing on the moon. Nomi was extremely naïve and although I can understand that she was being manipulated, the entire plot she was apparently lured into didn’t even make any sense. It was sloppily thrown together and had almost no planning behind it and I don’t think this story line was properly done. Malachai, Val and Asa had no nuances to their characters. Malachai was serious and moody all the time. Val was just nice, nice, nice. And Asa was the classic two-faced evil villain character. Furthermore, the plot moved so slowly that I was perpetually bored whilst reading and couldn’t wait for the book to end because barely anything interesting happened!
Please don’t not read this book just because I didn’t enjoy it- there are people out there who loved it. It didn’t work for me and I have tried my best to explain why and despite everything I will still read the second book.