The Mystery of Grace

The Mystery of Grace

Book - 2009
Average Rating:
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On the Day of the Dead, the Solona Music Hall is jumping.  That's where Altagracia Quintero meets John Burns, just two weeks too late.

Altagracia -- her friends call her Grace -- has a tattoo of Nuestra Señora de Altagracia on her shoulder, she's got a Ford Motor Company tattoo running down her leg, and she has grease worked so deep into her hands that it'll never wash out.  Grace works at Sanchez Motorworks, customizing hot rods.  Finding the line in a classic car is her calling.

Now Grace has to find the line in her own life.  A few blocks around the Alverson Arms is all her world -- from the little grocery store where she buys beans, tamales, and cigarettes ("cigarettes can kill you," they tell her, but she smokes them anyway) to the record shop, to the library where Henry, a black man confined to a wheelchair, researches the mystery of life in death -- but she's got unfinished business keeping her close to home.

Grace loves John, and John loves her, and that would be wonderful, except that John, like Grace, has unfinished business -- he's haunted by the childhood death of his younger brother.  He's never stopped feeling responsible. Like Grace in her way, John is an artist, and before their relationship can find its resolution, the two of them will have to teach each other about life and love, about hot rods and Elvis Presley, and about why it's necessary to let some things go.

Publisher: New York : Tor, 2009
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9780765317568
0765317567
Branch Call Number: FICTION De Lint
Characteristics: 269 p. ; 25 cm

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ontherideau May 25, 2014

Some books we can call predictable- this one had me wondering all the way

l
lorcha
Aug 08, 2011

What a wonderful story!
Had someone told me what it was about ahead of time, it would have seemed so depressing and I might not have wanted to read it. While the story is indeed bittersweet, it is not a downer at all. It could have also been kitschy had it been written by a less skilled writer.

Cdnbookworm May 18, 2011

This is the story of Grace Quintero, a young woman who goes through an amazing experience. Grace was very close to her grandfather, who has recently died. He taught her about cars, and she has become a mechanic, specializing in classic hot rods. Grace has many tattoos, a story of her life and what is important to her. They include the saint that she is named for, Nuestra Senora de Altagracia, her mother, and one honoring the Ford Motor Company.
When Grace meets John Burns as the Solona Music Hall, it is already too late for them. Grace has been transported to another world, where she works with new friends, Conchita, Henry, and David to try to figure out why their new environment exists and how it came to be.
A story of faith, friends, and love, this is a book that grips you and leaves you with wonder about the possibilities.
Grace is a woman not scared to face the truths in her life and that is what brings her to the larger truths.

k
kstevens
Dec 10, 2010

One of De Lint's best!
A fun read.

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