Published: March 27, 2012
Format: Paperback (352 pages)
A special guest post by author, T. Greenwood . . .
Late in 2009, I heard a story on the news about a man in suburban Detroit who, after making his teenage son strip naked, forced him out into a dirt lot near their home where he shot him execution style. It was the type of story that both horrified and fascinated me. As a parent, it seemed inconceivable. As a mother, it seemed unforgivable. And for the next several months, I couldn’t let go of this image, a modern day Abraham and Isaac story played out in a vacant lot.
Every novel I write begins with a question. Grace began with this one: What would bring a father to this? What would drive a man to the state of madness necessary to kill his own son? I wrote the opening scene first, conjuring Kurt Kennedy and his son, Trevor, in a similar situation (though not in Michigan but rural Vermont). I imagined what might be going through Kurt’s mind as he marched his son into a snowy field, a rifle aimed at the back of his head. Who are these people, and how did they get here? I asked myself. And then I spent the next year and a half (and nearly 400 pages) figuring out the answer to this question.
Initially I knew little about Kurt and Trevor. I only knew that Kurt had snapped, and that Trevor had done something horrific to trigger this fracture. Initially, I thought that something was wrong with Trevor, that he was somehow troubled. What I learned, however, by going with him to school and spending time with him as he wandered the woods behind his house with his camera, was he wasn’t troubled at all, but rather the victim of years of torment by his peers. He was a sensitive kid whose only friends in the whole world were his elderly art teacher and five year old sister. I fell in love with Trevor from the outset. And it was excruciating watching as the events that led up to this confrontation with his father unfolded.
But I also allowed myself into Kurt’s world, as well as Elsbeth’s (Trevor’s mother). And what I found were two parents each waging their own small wars in an effort to keep their family together, their lives together, despite having both sacrificed their dreams a long time ago. I also found Crystal, a store clerk with her own demons to exorcise, who becomes inextricably tied into the drama playing out in the Kennedys’ lives.
I never set out with a particular agenda with regard to theme; rather, themes slowly emerge as the characters begin to breathe on the page. The story of the Kennedy family began in an effort to answer the aforementioned question, but ultimately became a story about perception, about possession, and about the small moments of grace that can—and do—save us…sometimes even from ourselves.
My thanks to T. Greenwood for visiting my blog and giving us readers a glimpse into GRACE, the real story behind her story.
NOW, HERE’S AMAZING MULTI-BOOK GIVEAWAY NEWS!
For readers of this blog, throughout the United States and Canada, you can enter a random drawing for free physical books of ALL T. Greenwood’s previous titles including:
THE HUNGRY SEASON
UNDRESSING THE MOON
NEARER THAN THE SKY
THIS GLITTERING WORLD
You can enter this multi-book giveaway just by leaving a comment on this blog post!
The comment form will require an email address. However, your email address will not be published.
I will announce the winner on a future blog post.
So, you stay tuned and check back often! I just may have more giveaways coming to you in the future.