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Saving Grace

TitleSaving Grace
Publication TypeBook
Year of Publication2006
AuthorsRyan, Darlene
Series TitleOrca soundings.
Number of Pages97
PublisherOrca Book Publishers
ISBN Number155143668X (bound) :
DescriptorsAdoption; Conflict Resolution; Language; Novel; Young Adult

In this young adult novel protagonist, 15 year old Evie, feels remorse over giving her baby up for adoption to a family that she believes is not caring for her child properly. Evie takes it upon herself to manipulate the baby’s father into helping her kidnap the child and run away to Montreal to start a new life. Evie becomes overwhelmed with the enormity of caring for a child and realizes that she is ill-equipped to raise a baby. Author Darlene Ryan currently lives in Fredericton, New Brunswick. Saving Grace was a Ann Connor Brimer Award Nominee, 2007, Canada.


New Brunswick

Age Range



After being forced to give her baby up for adoption, a fifteen-year-old mother, Evie, decides to kidnap her child from the adoptive parents. Evie convinces the child’s father, Justin, to drive her to Montreal where she plans to raise Grace, whom she chooses to call Brianna. During the long car ride from New Brunswick to Montreal, Evie flashes back to how she met Justin and to how she became pregnant at the age of fourteen. She reflects on her decision not to have an abortion and to give the infant up for adoption. She also thinks about her life before the death of her own mother. Before they reach Quebec, and after stopping for gas, Evie notices Justin on the phone, and she decides to take Brianna and run. But Brianna has a fever, her breathing is heavy, and she vomits. Despite her fear of losing the child, Evie decides to take Brianna to an after-hours clinic, and the novel ends.


“Justin, you have to pull over,” I said finally. He didn’t hear me. I leaned across the seat and whacked his arm with the back of my hand. “Pull over,” I said again.
“What for?”
“I want to burp her.”
“So? Do it.”
“I have to take her out of the seat, asshole,” I said, shouting so he’d hear me over Brianna’s crying. “Just pull over.”
Justin puffed out his cheeks and then let out a breath. “Fine,” he grumbled through clenched teeth. He slowed down, pulled over onto the gravel side of the road and put the truck in park. Then he turned off the ignition, grabbed the keys and got out. I heard him swearing under his breath.
Brianna was still hollering. Her face was all red and wrinkly and her eyes were squeezed shut. Geez, how could someone so small make so much noise? The sound made my stomach into a big hard knot. (12-13)