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Book Review · The Lesbian Review

Graceless by Ruby Landers

Graceless by Ruby Landers is the second book in the Grace Notes series. This engaging enemies-to-lovers romance will make even the most hardened of hearts melt.

Everything is finally going right for world-famous singer Savannah Grace. She’s back to selling out stadiums and winning Grammys. Having just returned from her honeymoon after marrying the love of her life, she feels that nothing can burst this bubble of happiness and joy.

Well, except for her estranged family.

When her younger sister Cassidy shows up (inexplicably) pissed off and demanding help, the entire household gets turned on its head. Everyone wonders where she came from and why she’s so angry.

Savannah’s nanny Lane has finally grown up. They’ve gone from being a cute punk kid to a classically handsome player leaving a trail of broken hearts in their wake. Lane has no time to waste on their boss’s bratty and ignorant little sister even though she’s smoking hot.

As if things couldn’t get any worse, Cassidy’s one plan is for her sister to turn her into a star.


Graceless, picking up over a year after Falls From Grace, continues the story of beloved characters while adding new layers of depth. Landers retains each character’s integrity and enriches them further. Her writing has reached new heights, with the witty banter from the first book still alive and well. Additionally, she adeptly addresses important topics such as gender identity and homophobia, incorporating profound commentary that resonates deeply. At one point Coral tells Cassidy, “You don’t have to understand everything about a person to treat them with respect.” This statement encompasses the novel’s thoughtful approach. Many passages in Graceless are noteworthy and highlight Landers’ impressive insight.

Pros And My Favourite Parts

The second Cassidy stepped onto Savannah and Brynn’s property, the venom just about seeped from her pores. The anger, resentment, and hatred are all palpable. She immediately gets on not only Brynn’s wrong side but Lane’s. And Lane, bless them, does not take any crap. Cassidy is spoiling for a fight with her sister, but Savannah refuses to engage, enraging Cassidy further. As the layers are peeled, revelations are made allowing readers deeply below the surface to see the scars inflicted on both Savannah and Cassidy.

Cassidy’s dual nature, as both a brash, outspoken young woman and a deeply wounded individual, emphasizes the complex human emotions Landers explores. Cassidy’s unfiltered expressions and actions, juxtaposed with her underlying vulnerability and longing for acceptance, particularly from her sister, create a compelling and relatable character arc. Landers’ ability to evoke empathy for Cassidy, despite her often abrasive demeanor, speaks volumes about her skill in character development. The emotional depth and transformation Cassidy undergoes make her journey a standout element in the narrative.

As a teacher, I appreciate Landers’ explanation of why Lane is pursuing a degree in education. And after learning about them through not just Lane’s eyes, but Tucker’s, Brynn’s, and Savannah’s, I believe they’d make an incredible teacher, one I’d be honored to work with. Lane’s ability to use their life experiences to positively impact others speaks to their strength and compassion making them not only an exemplary future teacher but a wonderful person who naturally draws everyone in.

Cassidy and Lane’s relationship is intricate and compelling. Lane’s inexplicable attraction to Cassidy despite a strong dislike, and Cassidy’s unexpected draw towards someone so different from herself creates an interesting component to the narrative. This dynamic creates a fascinating tension, with chemistry and passion, underscored by Lane’s guardedness. Their relationship is deeply layered and the glacial burn (while frustrating for this supportive reader) is perfectly paced.

I loved the continuation of Brynn and Savannah’s relationship. Landers’ portrayal of their growing love, alongside Savannah’s pregnancy, beautifully captures the evolution of their bond. The witty banter, longing looks, and heartfelt revelations add a rich layer of authenticity and warmth to their relationship, making it swoon-worthy and engaging. Also, the birth scene is epic!

Heads Up

There are mild references to homophobia, transphobia, transphobic violence, postpartum depression, and family violence, but no on-page trauma.

The Conclusion

Book Review · The Lesbian Review Jennas Favourite BooksGraceless is a wonderful continuation of the Grace Notes series. The seamless progression of  Brynn, Savannah, and Tucker’s stories alongside the development of Cassidy and Lane’s relationship shows Landers’ skill in weaving multiple narratives together. It’s emotional, honest, reflective, and both heartbreaking and heartwarming. Graceless touches on many important topics with Landers handled expertly. The dialogue is snappy with beautiful descriptions of the scenery and a deep dive into being an aspiring musician in Nashville. I did not want the book to end, but knowing that book three will continue the story of these incredible characters’ lives while welcoming two “new” characters into the fold, I was able to accept the ending punctuation. I can’t wait for Saving Graces! Thank you Ruby Landers for another incredible read!

Excerpt from Graceless by Ruby Landers

Cassidy felt sick. Behind her lay everything she knew. Ahead of her lay an unknown world. She hunched her shoulders, feeling the backpack shift against her hot, damp dress: everything she now owned she carried on her back. The sun beat down as she blindly navigated the back roads, her hair sticking to her neck, her shoes already rubbing. Her feet moved by instinct. Her stomach ached. She did not know where she was going.

Her mind raced with furious words: the things she’d said, the things she should have said. The rage had sideswiped her with its suddenness. One minute she was quietly washing the breakfast dishes; the next, she was blowing up her entire life. She hadn’t even been aware of the fury building within her, but now, as she marched grimly along the road, sweat beading on her brow, she could see the way its roots had spread throughout her life, angry tentacles that strangled everything in its path.

The counter-reaction had been swift and merciless.

Panting, she struggled up the incline and found herself at the edge of the highway. In one direction lay the Appalachian foothills; in the other…well, there was only one way to go. She dropped her backpack onto the path beside her and stared into the distance, where the asphalt seemed to wave and shimmer in the heat.

She took a swig of her water bottle and cursed herself as only a couple of drops fell into her dry mouth. Her arm dropped, the useless bottle mocking her thirst. The air around her was like breathing in hot soup. A truck appeared on the horizon and her decision was made. As if she’d done it a thousand times before, instead of never once having crossed the border of her tiny hometown, Cassidy extended her arm, her thumb raised.

The truck screeched to a halt ten feet past her, its engine idling, the window rolling down. A shot of fear ran through her, chased equally by a blaze of incandescent rage. This was what she’d been reduced to: a frightened girl, with no one left to turn to for help but a total stranger on a deserted strip of highway. If her body were to end up tossed on the side of the road, there was only one person to blame: Savannah Grace.

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Series: Grace Notes

Falls From Grace


Saving Graces

Bits and Bobs


Publisher: Indie Author

Ruby Landers Online

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Note: I received a free review copy of Graceless by Ruby Landers, No money was exchanged for this review. When you use our links to buy we get a small commission which supports the running of this site

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