Tender Graces is the debut novel from author Kathryn Magendie. The book is told from the vantage point of the main character Virginia Kate Carey. Virginia Kate returns home after the death of her mother. She is determined to reconcile her past and be at peace with it. This is no typical family book of grief and loss. It is a realistic look into the dark places of family history.
With the guidance of Grandma Faith, Virginia Kate recalls her childhood and the home in the mountains she shared with her parents and brothers. It is an eye opening account of how Virginia Kate viewed the struggle of her parent’s marriage. How the family deals with unwanted changes that come in like a slow building tornado that threatens to tear into pieces all they have known and loved.
Ms. Magendie guides the reader down this mountain path with humor, eloquence, and darn good storytelling. This first time author can expertly handle a phrase. What could be a mundane task carried out by a character is full meaning. The characters in the story are rich and colorful. Even when they drop by for a short visit you will remember them after you turn the page, and turn the page you will. I smiled and cried as I was drawn into their lives hoping for the best and fearing the worst.
This was a book I dreaded finishing. With only forty pages left I vowed not to read it for one day. It was like denying a PMS sufferer chocolate and I gave up. When I finished this book I was happy and content. I know if you read Tender Graces and dive into the life of Virginia Kate Carey you will be too.