Strange Grace by Tessa Gratton | DNF Review

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Strange Grace by Tessa Gratton | DNF ReviewStrange Grace by Tessa Gratton
Published by Simon and Schuster on September 18, 2018
Genres: Young Adult Fiction, Fantasy, Dark Fantasy, Thrillers & Suspense, Horror
Pages: 400
Format: eARC
Source: Publisher
Buy on Amazon
ISBN: 9781534402102

Once, a witch made a pact with a devil. The legend says they loved each other, but can the story be trusted at all? Find out in this lush, atmospheric fantasy novel that entwines love, lies, and sacrifice.

Long ago, a village made a bargain with the devil: to ensure their prosperity, when the Slaughter Moon rises, the village must sacrifice a young man into the depths of the Devil’s Forest.

Only this year, the Slaughter Moon has risen early.

Bound by duty, secrets, and the love they share for one another, Mairwen, a spirited witch; Rhun, the expected saint; and Arthur, a restless outcast, will each have a role to play as the devil demands a body to fill the bargain. But the devil these friends find is not the one they expect, and the lies they uncover will turn their town—and their hearts—inside out.

Why’d I Pick This Book To Read?

Strange Grace by Tessa Gratton is the kind of book that makes me think of fall. The storyline looks dark. The setting and writing is quite atmospheric. Also, there are witches. I thought I would enjoy this because a long time ago, I liked Gratton’s Blood Magic book. Unfortunately, it just did not pan out with this book.

What’s The Story Here?

Strange Grace, from what I gather, is about three young adults – Mairwen, Rhun, and Arthur. All three are in love with each other. They live in this magical valley where no one ever gets sick and where there’s always a plentiful harvest. It is blessed because of a bargain with the devil. Every seven years, the best boy goes into the forest for the night. He either comes out at the end or doesn’t, but the devil is satisfied. Mairwen and her mother are the Grace witches. Anyways, the forest calls for a sacrifice only three years out from the last one, thus there’s concern that the bargain is broken. And, yeah, that’s about the gist of the story.

How Long Did I Last?

I got to page 110 out of 400 per my Kindle.

Why Did I DNF?

Honestly, I was B O R E D. BORED. It isn’t like I did not want to try to finish this book. It gets some really great reviews. One even compares it to books by one of my favorite authors. However, I just could not bring myself to care. You know how some books are so slow? You find yourself doing things like reading all of social media until the bottom where it says, hey no more posts to read. That happened. I got to the end of Instagram while reading this book. I had not attachment to any of the characters. Also, while the prose is very pretty, I just felt so bogged down with it. It just seemed a bit overwritten. And you know, I gave it the old college try. I had every intention of finishing. However, now I am reading a romance novel and feel much more driven to keep reading.

Is There Anyone This Book Would Appeal To?

People who like a good turn of phrase that happens to be super poetic and pretty. Also, people who are into dark, lush stories. If you’re a patient reader obsessed with witch books, give it a shot. Also, I will say that this book is cool because it explores different types of sexuality and gender. I won’t discount that at all — I think it’s great to see representation in a book and would recommend to anyone looking for pansexual representation and I guess also possibly non-binary representation.

Other reviews of Strange Grace by Tessa Gratton:

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About April (Books&Wine)

April is in her 30s and created Good Books And Good Wine. She works for a non-profit. April always has a book on hand. In her free time she can be found binge watching The Office with her husband and toddler, spending way too much time on Pinterest or exploring her neighborhood.


  1. Lovely DNF review April 😀 Thank you for sharing about this one. <3 I was curious about it for a while, but then decided that it probably wouldn't be for me, haha. Glad I did not give it a try 🙂

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