Title: The State Of Grace
Author: Rachael Lucas
Publisher: Macmillan Children’s Books
Publication Date: April 6th 2017
Sometimes I feel like everyone else was handed a copy of the rules for life and mine got lost.
Grace has Asperger’s and her own way of looking at the world. She’s got a horse and a best friend who understand her, and that’s pretty much all she needs. But when Grace kisses Gabe and things start to change at home, the world doesn’t make much sense to her any more.
Suddenly everything threatens to fall apart, and it’s up to Grace to fix it on her own.
Thank you to the publisher and NetGalley for providing me with an advance reading copy in exchange for an honest review!
The State Of Grace is an #ownvoices novel narrated by sixteen year old Grace, who has Asperger’s. Given my limited knowledge and experience with people on the autism spectrum, this was such an insightful and heart-warming read.
I absolutely adored the narrative voice. Grace was such a loveable character and, although I’m not autistic, I felt that I could really relate to her feelings in certain situations. She often gets anxious and I loved the way this was written through long-winded sentences.
On the outside, Grace is a completely normal teenager with a fondness for Doctor Who, animals and anime. But on the inside, she struggles in ways people aren’t often aware about. I loved that the first person narrative allowed us to get into Grace’s head and understand her thought processes.
I adored her relationship with her horse Mabel, particular near the end of the novel, and it was lovely to see the support system she had in place from her best friend Anna, to her younger sister, to Polly who works at the stables.
Though I wouldn’t categorise this book as a romance, there is some romance involved. Like most contemporary novels, given the time frame, it felt like an insta-love story. I was under the impression that Grace had hardly talked to Gabe before. Yet, after a game of Spin The Bottle in which they spend more time talking about Ten than kissing, they end up on a date that ends with more kissing. I did really like Gabe though, and how the story didn’t specifically focus on their relationship.
Overall, this was not only an enjoyable read but also an important one. I really struggled to settle on a rating because even though it was a beautifully written story about an autistic teen, I felt nothing much happened plot wise. And despite the nicely wrapped up ending, I would have liked it to be slightly longer.
I want to conclude this post by directing you to some reviews from autistic readers. Even though the book is #ownvoices, every experience is always different so I loved hearing and reading other thoughts on the representation.
Autism Education: The State Of Grace by Rachael Lucas Book Review by CuriosityRocks
The State of Grace by Rachael Lucas | 1 Minute Reviews by Little Hux Tales
Review: The State of Grace (Rachael Lucas) by My Furry Bookshelf