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The Saving Graces

3.77 of 5 stars 3.77  ·  rating details  ·  12,924 ratings  ·  600 reviews
Meet The Saving Graces, Four Of The Best Friends A Woman Can Ever Have.

For ten years, Emma, Rudy, Lee, and Isabel have shared a deep affection that has helped them deal with the ebb and flow of expectations and disappointments common to us all. Calling themselves the Saving Graces, the quartet is united by understanding, honesty, and acceptance -- a connection that has gro
Paperback, 416 pages
Published March 30th 2004 by Harper Perennial (first published January 1st 1999)
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Best Adult Female Friendship Books
23rd out of 433 books — 855 voters
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Best Women's Fiction Novels
46th out of 1,061 books — 1,107 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Wicked Incognito Now
This is simply the story of four best friends.

This is the sort of book I would normally avoid like the plague. I read for escapism, not to experience middle aged women and all their various (real-life) issues. Plus, lately I've been reading exclusively romance and YA, because I figure: Why not just read the books I really WANT to read, instead of reading the books that others think only the "intelligent" people read? I love the guarantee of a happily ever after that romances provide.

However, I'
Jo Ann
This is the 4th time I've read this book...I've read it for various groups: with varied friends/groups of friends, book club, and now, for a "book club" with my 3 sisters-in-laws. Each time I've read it, the "star ratings" increase. That is perhaps because I've lived more of life, and appreciate more and more the sharings and discussions between friends (and yes, I consider my sisters-in-laws true friends). I appreciate FRIENDS and the wonder and depth and fun they bring to my life. So, discussi ...more
This was just the thing I needed to read these days. Some sort of sisterhood of the travelling pants with women on their forties.

Lee, Isabel, Rudy and Emma have created a group about 10 years ago which they've called "The Saving Graces". They meet usually twice a month, at each others place, and over dinner they catch up on each their lifes, chat and support each other. Initially on their meetings they had topics to discuss, but that was probably when they were't true friends yet.

They are all di
Told from the perspective of four friends who call themselves The Saving Graces, we get a story of friendship that endures through the ups and downs of life. That seems so trite as I write it but, as we all know, the ups and downs are far from trivial and what they experience touches on some of the hardest things women have to go through. Each chapter is told by one of the graces points of view, so we get a close up look at all of them, but it's what they say when the other one is speaking that ...more
I was ordering some books on Barnes & Noble's website, and I was up to about $22. If you order $25 worth of books, then you get free shipping. So, I skipped to the bargain books and added this to my cart on a whim. Some things are just meant to be.

I loved the story lines in this book. I never wanted to put it down because I wanted to know what was going to happen next for each of the women in the book. As a bonus, the book is based in DC. Books based in your own city are always a little more
Well, okay, it was formulaic. You have your obligatory women's group with one of each personality type. You have your uptight organized one, your wild insecure one, your wise spiritual one and your neurotic damaged one. And you have your usual women's group themes. There's someone struggling with infertility, someone trying to get over a damaged childhood, someone with cancer and someone fighting the urge to commit adultery. Still, Gaffney is a good storyteller. The chemotherapy scenes are so vi ...more
The Saving Graces is a beautiful story about friendship, love & loss, trial & error, hardships, & success, fears & conquests, and the bond between four women who were lucky enough to have each other in their lives.
This story was so well written that it would be hard for the reader not see a part of themselves in each of these women, to find a characteristic or two of one of your own friends mirrored in the Graces and you will long to be one of them. Lee, Emma, Ruby, & Isabel
I just can't get into this book. I find it very difficult to follow and I can't get close to the characters. Sadly, putting it down for now.
Wonderful story of four best friends--sort of like the Traveling Pants books for adults. It deals with some heavy life issues--affairs, divorce, health, infertility--in short, real life stuff. I loved reading how these women supported and loved each other through everything life throws at them. Again, with the language disclaimer though--not lots, but ocassionally BAD. All in all though, a wonderful book about women.
Ingrid Fasquelle
Patricia Gaffney est américaine. Elle est l’auteur à succès de 17 romans dont Les quatre Grâces, un best-seller du New York Times, de Publishers Weekly et de USA Today. Ses livres sont publiés dans le monde entier. Les quatre Grâces, considéré comme un classique aux Etats-Unis, s’est vendu à plus de 1,5 million d’exemplaires.

Contrairement aux Trois Grâces de la mythologie, les héroïnes de ce feel-good book sont quatre. Pendant 10 ans, Emma, Rudy, Lee et Isabel se réunissent une fois par semaine,
Bev Walkling
I have always been a fan of Anne of Green Gables and was particularly taken with her idea of kindred spirits. My hope has always been that I would find one and at times in my life have found myself close including being part of a woman's group that lasted for some years, but moves among other things, health issues and being a caregiver for many years (which tends to isolate one) mean that although I have friends I don't feel that I have a female kindred spirit.

This book is about 4 women who beca
Critique complète sur mon blog

Vous êtes fatigué des histoires d’amour ? Voici une magnifique histoire d’amitié. C’est l’histoire de quatre copines, Emma, Rudy, Lee et Isabel qui depuis dix ans se retrouvent une fois par semaine dans un groupe de discussion. Elles sont différentes, elles ont chacune leurs difficultés, leur histoire et leur personnalité, mais ensemble, elles affrontent la vie un peu plus facilement.

La fin de la critique sur mon blog

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Regina Mastrogiacomo
At first I thought the book was rather slow, but as I read on it became more involved and interesting. I like stories about people and how they act between each other. I find it fascinating.

This book allow a perspective from each of the specific characters and made it more rounded and less judgmental. The challenges that each of the women dealt with is pretty typical, but I really enjoyed their compassion and kindness toward each other even when they wanted to yell and scream at each other. The
May 26, 2008 Lana rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: everyone with a friend
Recommended to Lana by: my daughter, who is also my friend
I had a hard time getting into this book. i am not crazy about the chapters, each person is a chapter and it jumps back and forth. but once i got into the story i loved it. what a great portrayal of these women, who could be anyone we actually have as friends. some people, especially women i know, say that only two can have a friendship. but i disagree with that. these women were not perfect, they had their fights, but they still remained friends, and that is what friendship it. through the bad ...more
I give it 3.5 stars. I just wasn't "feeling" this book. While reading a book like this, I usually get involved with the characters and start to care for them, even if I don't relate with them. But that didn't really happen here. I continued to read it since it was for book club and I wanted to find out what happened. It wasn't until almost the end of the book that I liked the book and I did get a teary.
Gypsy Lady
Page 256
... he’s one of those rare men who don’t feel bound to have an opinion on everything. Or worse, a solution.

Page 260
Yesterday’s revelations continue. Ultimately, in the very grand scheme of things, it’s irrelevant whether my life lasts fifty more years, or five. Or two. The point is to live it, not wait through it. And I’m alive now – I can pick flowers, pet the dog, eat cinnamon toast. How foolish I would be to let my mortality, which has been there all along, since he second of by birth
Lynn Yhost
This was one of my all time favorite books. I recommended this to my sisters and they recommended it to their friends and within a month (without exaggeration) there were at least a dozen of us who had read the book and were all in love with it. It was witty and full of the substance of life. I didn't want it to end! From the first page I was "part of their lives" and didn't want to "come home." I laughed out loud and cried ... not little tear ... BIG SLOPPY WET TEARS!

Excellent book. Would love
This was a pretty solid 3.5 stars, but not quite 4.
This is my first Patricia Gaffney and (yet another) thing I have tried on Jennifer Crusie's recommendation (yes, I can think for myself, thanks for asking).

The Saving Graces is a book about friendship. Four women have enjoyed more than ten years of shared life and love; helping each other in more ways than can be counted.

To read the rest of this review, please visit
Jill Friesz rhamy
Admittedly, I only read this one because it was my choice for our very first book club, I had to come up with a book quickly and this was the only one on my bookshelf that I hadn't read yet. Not a high endorsement at all, but I was glad I did. If you have a book club or any group of women that you get together with regularly this is a fun read to talk about each of the characters and how alike they are to each member of your group. It won't end up being your favorite book, but it is a good way t ...more
Tamara Lane
Amazing finish! A lovely, eloquent writer, Ms. Gaffney is!
I found this tedious, as it is told in the first person by FOUR first people. Took me a while to sort them out, and mercy, what a mess their lives are! Middle-age angst all over the place. Issues many
deal with - infertility, immaturity, insecurity, unfaithfulness, even cancer - but while their first resort seems to be their friendship, alcohol is definitely always on the menu.
This just plodded along for me. Way too wordy. I do not recommend it at all.
In a year I probably won't remember this book; but while I was reading it, I found it enjoyable and captivating. Although it was a hard read emotionally, it was hard to put down. It's the recollections of four middle-aged friends who form a club out of a deep need for unconditional friendship and female support. They call themselves "The Saving Graces" and meet twice a month for sharing and discussions and much more. The four include:

Isabel - is ten years older than the others and becomes the "m
For me, this book was just way too long, at more than 500 pages in paperback. I also did not favor the way the narrator switched between the four main characters - the Saving Graces - every chapter. I found it hard to continuously readjust and would have preferred it told from just one character's perspective. All in all, it was a nice book, but not incredible.
Amanda McGill
I really enjoyed this novel. It reminded me of Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants, but as an adult read. At the beginning, I found it hard to keep track of the women, but obviously it was easier as the novel went on. I loved the 4 women's friendship. A bit predictable, but still a great story.
Kevin Kern
I first read this book, right after it was published, then again about 7 or 8 years later, when a good friend was diagnosed with breast cancer. It is a great story, about friendship, the stress of cancer, love and getting out of bed each morning. I have a hard back copy, with a corner chewed off, by a puppy, who is now 15 years old. I think this book is the reason Debbie, mistakes chick lit. Before Patricia Gaffney wrote it, she wrote romance novels. They were/are a great way to make money. To w ...more
Zoe Coelho
I really enjoyed this book!one of the best womens' fiction book. I like primarily that this book is written very well. It has great passages that all women can relate to, from relationships with other women, with men and our relationships with our kids and parents. Its insightful, smart and real about how we all have ups and downs in life and it just makes you want to have a bonding sisterhood like this one where you can share all the bitter and sweet moments in your life like the saving graces ...more
I was so wrong in everything I thought about this book before I read it. I thought it was going to be a bunch of sad middle aged women talking about hot flashes. I don't think a book has ever taken me more by surprise than this one did. Mostly, I will admit, because my expectations going in were so low. The writing was wonderfully poignant and the characters felt real and honest. The Saving Graces are real women, with their good and bad, neuroses and strengths, friends and men.
I don't think I w
Yang Shu-yuan
Es geht um vier unterschiedliche Frauen, die sich über zehn Jahre regelmässig treffen, ihre großen und kleinen Probleme besprechen und ihre Geheimnisse teilen. Jede dieser Frauen hat Schwierigkeiten, die sie überwinden muss: Kinderlosigkeit, die Liebe zu einem verheirateten Mann, eine Krebserkrankung und einen überaus dominanter Ehemann. Gemeinsam überwinden sie jedoch alles und jeden und alles wird gut.
Die Grundlage der Geschichte ist auch gleichzeitig ihre Schwäche: die Probleme sind so klar a
Les aventures tragi-comiques de femmes nous sont devenues familières depuis Desperate Housewives et l’on pourrait, en ouvrant ce livre penser que Patricia Gaffney a voulu nous présenter quatre amies un peu sur ce modèle. Mais elle choisit un angle bien différent, celui de l’amitié féminine, la vraie, celle qui transcende les différences, les années, le temps, les aléas de la vie et cela donne une très belle histoire triste et optimiste à la fois.

Elles sont quatre au départ, quatre femmes qui von
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Patricia Gaffney was born in Tampa, Florida, and grew up in Bethesda, Maryland, a suburb of Washington, D.C. She earned a bachelor’s degree in English and philosophy from Marymount College in Tarrytown, New York, and also studied literature at Royal Holloway College of the University of London, at George Washington University, and at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

After college, G
More about Patricia Gaffney...

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