The Fall of Grace

304p. Delacorte. Apr. 2018. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9781101936238.
Gr 9 Up—A blend of suspense and adventure with a romance thrown in for good measure. Grace is a junior in a Phoenix high school with a keen interest in photography whose comfortable world is quickly turned upside-down when her mother slips into a shock-induced coma after being caught embezzling millions of dollars. Now, instead of focusing her lens on the outside world, Grace looks inward while in search of clues about who her mother really was—and hopefully finding a stash of money she didn't spend. After failing to find answers at home, Grace embarks on a journey to her mother's vacation spot in Colorado. The narrative jumps back and forth between the present and flashbacks, which can be confusing. This suburban rich girl conquers her fears during a night on the side of a mountain, making this a story of soul-searching, self-discovery, and eventual maturity. This contemporary realistic/dramatic novel is easy reading with plenty of dialogue to keep the plot moving forward. It is a sad and depressing book without a redeeming ending that readers might be expecting. Life goes on, almost too realistically. Readers might not have enough empathy for what they see as a rich teenager who discovers the real world beyond her comfortable means, but might be compelled to have a change of heart for the protagonist after her difficult trials.
VERDICT Recommended for large collections serving teens.

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