Grace by Susan Bennett was a fun read. The story starts off with mob wives Teresa and Isabella's misfortune at being thrown into jail for a crime they did not commit. Isabella starts off defining herself by her status as a mob wife then is thrown into turmoil in jail as she starts to discover her own identity.
Along the way, Isabella and Teresa make a couple friends in jail and learn that their lives are intertwined with some of them. Upon release, they are lost, and shadows of the women they used to be.
By pure chance, they run into Irish, an author living in New Jersey. She takes them in, cooks with them, teaches them to be strong women again while teaching them to take care of themselves. Along the way, they devise a plan to kill their husbands. This is where the training, planing and heart wrenching circumstances come in.
I enjoyed this book immensely. I found myself smiling to myself several times at the silly things the quartet of friends do. I also liked this book of friendship, mothering and companionship. I liked how just about anything could be solved by cooking a good meal and sharing it with someone you love. I do, however, wish the author had gone into a bit more detail about Irish's odd behavior. Her massive gun collection, tendency to keep to herself and addiction to keeping fit hint at a bigger story. At first blush, I thought she may be a spy, in the witness protection program or something equally exciting. The actual answer was a bit dissapointing and didn't ring true to the build up of her background story.
I give this 3 out of 5 stars.