Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Historical Fiction Author Jessica James Brings the Civil War in Virginia Alive with Shades of Gray

I don't often speak of a book I'm reading before posting my review, but I must do so in this case because I have been so captured by this book that I must share it with you.

I contacted author Jessica James when I heard about her novel, Shades of Gray: A Novel of the Civil War in Virgina. My fascination with the War between the States, the many fiction and non-fiction titles I've read set around and about the Civil War, and the courses and research I have performed about this time in America's history, led me to believe I would enjoy James's novel.

What I could not have known, was that this book would draw me in so fully that I want to spend every waking moment reading it. I will not share the details of the scene that prompted me to write this post, but as you can imagine, during a war where loyalties were decided that split apart families and friends, there is a tremendous amount of tragedy involved.

As I sat in the tub last night reading, as I always do, the pages became blurry and I was brought to tears over this particular scene. A tragedy of great proportions that has long-reaching effects, literally left me bawling, as if the incident occured to someone I knew.

While I do not know what direction James took Shades of Gray, or how it will end, I certainly hope that her writing remains powerful and touches me deeply.


Dorothy Thompson said...

Oh Cheryl, this book sounds terrific! I love it when reviewers talk about the book as they're reading it. That's what I'm trying to do at www.asthepagesturn.wordpress.com. Gotta wait until the holidays settle down a bit and I'll start back, but this book would really interest me, I can tell. I love these types of stories!

Marta Stephens said...

Cheryl, thanks so much for the heads up on Jessica's book. I minored in history and have a passion for American history. Can't wait to read your review. This is one book I'll plan to read.

JM said...

This book sounds excellent. I have a bit of a 'thing' for anything and everything Civil War - it fascinates me.

Anonymous said...

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Margaret said...

You've got me totally curious to read this one now, especially with your comment about families being split apart. I'm in the middle of Two Brothers by David H. Jones right now, and his historical detail has really got me involved in the story of the Prentiss family and how the brothers ended up on different sides during the War.

Cheryl said...

Thanks for stopping by Margaret. I just finished reading "Two Brothers". My review will be posted over the weekend.

"Shades of Gray" is a brilliantly written novel. If you enjoy historial details, you'll want to check out Jessica's blog at http://www.jessicajamesblog.com/