Strange Grace (Paperback)

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Strange Grace By Tessa Gratton Cover Image
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Staff Reviews

Haunting, visceral, hopeful, this is a story of an Omelas - style moral quandary made so human it bleeds. This is a story about young people growing up in naive privilege, who learn that the foundational truth upon which their charmed village is built is much crueler than they ever imagined… and they decide to face it head on. Lush writing, unconventionally resolved queer love triangle, and smart plotting make this a winner.

— Gretchen L Treu

This is a rare gift of a YA story—protagonists who love their families and community, who trust that the way things are done is the way they ought to be done, then upon finding out the lie behind the seven year sacrifice, they take their power, enlist their community, and fight through grief and anger to risk everything on a new option. The prose is stylistically spot-on, giving the depth of magic in the forest and the lived-in humdrum existence of the townsfolk equal weight, with some incredibly visceral imagery to bring the story further to life. The romantic threads between the three protagonists are so lovely and unusual to see, and the way the romance is important but doesn’t supersede the main plot works beautifully. The plotting and pacing are great, and the heightened story of a small town caught up in an historic cycle of life and death between the forest, the devil, the witches, and the people was perfectly spun. I loved this book and I know I will be thinking about it for a long while. — From Gretchen's Middle Reader & Young Adult Picks


“Gloriously dark and romantic.” —Roshani Chokshi, New York Times bestselling author of The Star-Touched Queen
“An alluring and seductive fairy tale.” —Justina Ireland, New York Times bestselling author of Dread Nation
“Horrifying, heartbreaking, and heartwarming, a lush fairy tale rooted in a moral quandary.” —Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
“An eerie, consuming tale of sacrifice and faith. Haunting and unique.” —Booklist
“Evocative.” —BCCB

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.

About the Author

Tessa Gratton is genderfluid and hangry. She is the author of The Queens of Innis Lear and Lady Hotspur, as well as several YA series and short stories which have been translated into twenty-two languages. Her most recent YA novels are Strange Grace, Night Shine, and Moon Dark Smile. Though she has traveled all over the world, she currently lives alongside the Kansas prairie with her wife. Visit her at

Praise For…

"Strange Grace is an alluring and seductive fairy tale that asks just what would you give up for the things you love? And what if that isn’t enough? You won’t want to leave the beautiful and eerie world Gratton has created." 
— Justina Ireland, New York Times bestselling author of Dread Nation.

“Gloriously dark and romantic.” 
— Roshani Chokshi, New York Times Bestselling author of The Star-Touched Queen

"Horrifying, heartbreaking, and heartwarming, a lush fairy tale rooted in a moral quandary." 
— Kirkus Reviews, STARRED REVIEW

“An eerie, consuming tale of sacrifice and faith. Haunting and unique.” 
— Booklist

* "A story that is part The Village by M. Night Shyamalan and part 'The Lottery' by Shirley Jackson. The plot twists and turns in unexpected and thrilling ways described in Gratton’s vibrant writing."
— VOYA, starred review


Product Details
ISBN: 9781534402096
ISBN-10: 1534402098
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books
Publication Date: September 17th, 2019
Pages: 416
Language: English