Act of Grace by Anna Krien | Black Inc.
Act of Grace

Act of Grace is a thrilling read. It’s a novel that delves into the deepest questions of what it is to be human and expertly weaves hope, love, life and sorrow together in an epic of contemporary life.

Act of Grace

Book club notes

Awards for Act of Grace

  • Shortlisted, 2020 Queensland Literary Awards
  • Shortlisted, 2019 Victorian Premier's Literary Awards
  • Longlisted, 2019 Indie Book Awards
  • Longlisted, 2020 Miles Franklin Literary Award

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Two birds on a branch inside a yellow silhouette of a girls face on a light pink background

About the author

Anna Krien

Anna Krien is the author of the award-winning Night Games and Into the Woods, as well as two Quarterly Essays, Us and Them and The Long Goodbye. Anna’s writing has been published in The Monthly, The Age, Best …

More about Anna Krien

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Act of Grace

Praise for Act of Grace

Act of Grace is bold, brilliant and breathtakingly humane. Anna Krien makes riveting the sweep of history and the lived price of war; at the same time she reveals, with great insight, the intimacies of daily love and tiny, splintering acts of violence in families. She is both wide-angle and close-up, and there is redemption in every line. Anna Krien is the real deal – a novelist for our times.’ —Anna Funder, author of All That I Am

‘Masterful – a far-reaching tapestry of a novel. Nuanced and whip-smart, this is a work of profound empathy – a book of and for our times. As Act of Grace unfolds with precise muscularity, Krien’s inhabitation of each character approaches the divine.’ —Peggy Frew, author of The Islands and Hope Farm

Act of Grace is a work of stunning virtuosity. Krien has taken a huge leap of creative faith, and from the very first page to the last I was ready to follow her anywhere.’ —Ceridwen Dovey, author of In the Garden of the Fugitives and Only the Animals

‘An ambitious and compelling study of trauma and how it’s transferred and inherited … a nuanced consideration of the different forms and ethics of activism.’ —Books+Publishing

‘Propulsive and energetic, vivified by jolts of violence ... provocative and risky, but also fresh and ambitious. Act of Grace asks all the right questions.’ —The Monthly

‘Clipped, assured and unflinching … Krien has a delivered a meditation on Australia that reads like a thriller … Act of Grace implores us to acknowledge the demons of our past – only then can we move forward.’ —Readings

‘Krien is an absolute master, a writer of huge insight, compassion and intelligence’ —Meg Mundell

Act of Grace may be Krien’s first novel but it bears the passion and political fire notable in her non-fiction work.’ —Thuy On, Sydney Morning Herald

‘Krien’s first novel is a high-wire performance. With its vast historical rigging, epic scope, ethical complexity, and kaleidoscopic view, Act of Grace is enormously ambitious. The reader watches, breath held, as the novel unspools, but Krien’s step is sure, and she does not fall.’ —Australian Book Review

'Through the darkness, Act of Grace signals hope: Krien invites us to seize the power we each have to change ourselves and to consciously and positively shape the world we live in.' —The Saturday Paper

‘A fascinating, unflinching meditation on contemporary Australian life from the perspective of a marginalised and often traumatised cast of characters ... This is an ambitious novel by a very fine writer.’ —Jo Case

‘A powerful meditation on the ways that compensation may be offered, and how accepting them is never simple. 4.5 STARS’ —ArtsHub

‘None of Krien’s characters are above criticism but they are all vulnerable, open to change and a product of their circumstances. It’s what makes the book so compelling.’ —The Guardian

Act of Grace is a thrilling read. It’s a novel that delves into the deepest questions of what it is to be human and expertly weaves hope, love, life and sorrow together in an epic of contemporary life.’ —Westerly 

‘A thought-provoking novel of great literary quality.’ —Readings

‘It’s startling to read a first novel that gathers so much and travels so far, yet flows so effortlessly. Krien writes brilliantly.’ —The Guardian

‘In placing these complicated, vulnerable characters together, Krien crosses cultural and generational divides to dazzling effect.’ —The Times

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