Circle of Grace
By Penelope J. Stokes
(Broadway Books, Paperback, 9780767921282, 368pp.)
Publication Date: May 9, 2006
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When tragedy occurs, four friends come together in a bittersweet reunion and are forced to confront the falsehoods and also embrace the truth in their lives.
On college graduation day, Grace and her friends—Liz, Tess, and Lovey—agreed to keep a journal that would make the rounds. They vowed to always be truthful.
For three decades, the journal has been circulating, carrying stories of Liz’s missions against social injustices, Tess’s successful career and home life, and Lovey’s fairy-tale marriage to a former pro football player-turned-executive.
As for Grace, she never intends to deceive her seemingly content friends. She can’t bear to admit how her life has spiraled downward and the dismal realities she faces everyday. So at first, she simply embellishes the truth, omitting a few details from her entries. But over the years, one exaggeration leads to another until most of the life she has written is fiction.
Now Grace is extremely ill. Alone and desolate with nothing to lose, she reaches out to her friends. Reunited, they help her face the battle of her life while embarking on the most important struggle of their own lives—the fight for honesty and friendship.
PENELOPE J. STOKES is the author of nine novels, including The Blue Bottle Club. She lives in Asheville, North Carolina.
Praise for Circle of Grace
“The perfect story of enduring friendship. It is compelling, truthful, and poignant. You’ll want to buy several copies of this book, one to keep for yourself, the others to give to the women friends you are fortunate enough to include in your circle of grace.”
—Lynn Hinton, author of The Last Odd Day and Friendship Cake
“A beautiful novel of dreams gone awry, truths forsaken, and the blessings and redemptive power of women’s friendships. The dialogue is fast-paced, intelligent, and heartwrenchingly honest. The writing is clear and concise and speaks to the truths of our connection to the universe and to who we really are.”
—Joan Medlicott, author of The Ladies of Covington Send Their Love and The Spirit of Covington