Sunday, April 6, 2008

A Must Read....Shades of Gray by Jessica James

I feel I must start off my new blog with one of the best books I have read in years!! Shades of Gray, by Jessica James takes place during the Civil War, an historical novel of difficult choices. The Civil War pitted brothers, sisters and whole families against their own relatives. Passion was intense on the battlefield we know, but Jessica James creates a series of smoldering skirmishes and competitive contests of wit between the two main characters, Andrea and Alex Hunter.
Andrea, a southerner disguised as a man (Sinclair) is an expert equestrian who spies behind Confederate pickets. The battles from her past drive her over enemy lines to fight against her southern homeland. Hunter, a true southern Confederate from well-healed Virginia bloodlines, would rather die than surrender. When circumstances force Andrea and Alex to live at his southern plantation, the true battles of this book begin.
Ms. James has such an incredible flowing style of writing, that her dialogue between the Andrea and Alex was so entertaining, I felt I was there, in the next room. I felt like I was the spy lurking in the living room, like I shouldn't be listening. I actually found myself belly-laughing, giggling, sobbing to the point I had to keep tissues next to me. I'm not kidding!!! Listen to this quote from her book,

"Is that what you call the midnight mischief created by your mob of marauding miscreants? Lord have mercy on the Confederacy if you serve her through the unchristian and atrocious acts that are plotted and perpetrated by your band of highway-robbing heathens and hell-deserving henchmen." (p.195)

I have to admit I have red stickies all over this book where I wanted to go back and read portions of the text again. This book is much more than a book about the Civil War. The war is just the setting. If you want to read a book you will never forget and will think about for months after reading it. Read Shades of Gray. I challenge anyone not to cry, even the toughest among us.
This book took my breath away. Jessica James is a master of storytelling and suspense. Honestly, you will not sleep.


Anonymous said...

I began reading more historical books this year and found myself enjoying them. It's been a real treat.

anne said...

I enjoyed reading this review. A fascinating story and I enjoy historicals greatly. Philippa Gregory and Isabel Allende as you mentioned are favorites of mine as well. Wonderful novels that I devoured.

ruth said...

Intriguing novel and excellent review which gave me a glimpse into this writer's work. Thanks for this lovely giveaway.

Jessica said...

I am just getting into historical novels. I would love to read this one! Thanks for the giveaway!

Melissa Van Diepen said...

this is a really well written review. I'm going to add this book to my must read list. I'm not one for historical novels but I'll give this one a shot. Thanks!