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Shades of Gray

3.47  ·  Rating Details ·  800 Ratings  ·  150 Reviews
Update - SHADES of GRAY is now a BestSeller on Amazon with tons of five-star reviews. Get your copy today.

"Debut novelist Andy Holloman speeds us on a journey with punch, twist, and emotional dilemmas straight from our worst fears. Shades of Gray is a colorful, rollicking ride from start to finish."
- Franz Wisner, New York Times bestselling author of "Honeymoon with My Br
Paperback, first, 250 pages
Published December 1st 2011 by Triple J Press (first published November 28th 2011)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 2,585)
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Tia Bach
Dec 13, 2011 Tia Bach rated it it was amazing
Shades of Gray, the debut novel from Andy Holloman, examines the depths of a father’s love and the ramifications of desperate choices. John Manning and his daughter, Lucy, are driving home from a nice evening out when their car’s brakes malfunction. What initially seems like bad luck turns into a much darker story.

John hasn’t had it easy. When his wife leaves, his whole world revolves around Lucy. His successful business, a travel agency, is hit hard by the events of September 11, 2001. Then, h
Shades of Gray is seemingly inspired by a true story. It deals with a travel agent and his daughter, and a drug dealer and her daughter. They get involved and difficulties arise.

The book starts strong, with clear characterization and simple, down to earth prose. In the early chapters, I was impressed. Unfortunately, the book bogs down after about the first third. What seemed at first to be simple writing drops into simplistic plotting. What seemed unaffected conversation turns into stilted dialo
When 9/11 wrecks the American tourist industry, John Manning looks for creative ways to keep his business afloat. Unfortunately John’s daughter needs expensive surgery. His creativity is strained as he faces mounting bills and decreasing numbers of customers. Meanwhile John’s brother grows more and more estranged, and a stranger, Wanda, is the only one to offer a way out.

Andy Holloman’s Shades of Gray tells the tale of a man driven over those lines we know we won’t cross till they loom unavoidab
Jul 16, 2012 Vin rated it did not like it
I got this book because it was written by the brother of one of the cast members of the L Word & she put out the recommendation on Twitter. After reading the synopsis, I looked forward to reading the story, but I quickly lost interest once I did start reading. The characters aren't overly likeable or interesting, and alot of the narrative is REPETITIVE. I had to give up on it after some weird dialogue between two brothers about "if you can't cast your fishng line out a certain number of yard ...more
Jan 21, 2012 Kerry rated it it was amazing
Shelves: shelf-2
I received this book for free in a Goodreads First Reads giveaway.

Mr Holloman caused me to get nothing done that I needed to on my days off due to the fact that I couldn't put this book down. FINALLY someone has written a book with a fresh story concept, characters you can't help but like and best of all, he did all this by omitting the "boring" that so many authors tend to let slip into their novels. This is a great book....check it out.
Feb 01, 2013 Stephani rated it it was amazing
WOW! What a fantastic, well-written book!!!! I couldn't put it down. What emotions? Lord, I bawled like a baby more than once in this book, also got angry, was on edge several times. Absolutely loved it. I chewed my nails alot too...Not a good read, but a GREAT read!!! Loved the characters, loved the setting, Just a completely well written book!!!!!!!

Kristin (Kritters Ramblings)
In the first chapter you are introduced to John and his daughter Lucy and then suddenly a car accident happens and the reader is quickly taken back in time. From the beginning I was intrigued as to how John and Lucy end up in a car with brakes that are not working.

Set in a city that is close to my heart for many reasons, I love reading books that are set in North Carolina, but to read about the behind the scenes of the drug scene was eye-opening and appalling. As the reader you start rooting fo
Jan 20, 2012 Kathleen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What would you do if you were a single parent, and your child has a life threatening disease that requires a transplant surgery? Would you go to the end of the world to make sure your child was taken care of, even if the means to the end was by doing something illegal? What if you were always the type of person that believed things were either black or white, could you now allow yourself to believe that there are times when you have to walk the fine line, the Shades of Gray? And if you walk that ...more
Mar 29, 2013 Gareth rated it it was amazing
A richly expansive adventure story:

This is a detailed and evenly-paced story that shows how desperation and urgency can lead a man to dark deeds. Highly detailed and precise in narrative delivery, we see a man on the precipice of despair willing to risk everything … and paying the worst possible price for crossing the line.

A devoted father, John, finds himself in extreme financial difficulty. With his business failing and his precious daughter in need of expensive medical care, John becomes invo
Marilou George
May 10, 2012 Marilou George rated it it was amazing
John Manning is a devoted and loving single father who is compelled to make some difficult choices he could never have envisioned. Committed to his daughter and her well-being he is a man of deep moral conviction and sense of family. He is also committed to the success of his travel agency and when the economy takes a hit after the tragic events of Sept. 11th he desperately searches for a way to survive.

The character of John Manning is extremely well developed and relatable on all levels. He bri
Wendy Dingwall
Sep 10, 2012 Wendy Dingwall rated it really liked it
Shelves: suspense
The title, Shades of Gray, was never more appropriate to a story as it is in Holloman’s tale of good versus evil, which shows how good people can get caught crossing a line that becomes blurred by crisis. Holloman grabs the reader right from the beginning with action but the humanness of his characters is what keeps you turning the page.

Having once been the owner of a travel agency, I related to the seamless way he wove in the workings of the agency and its relevance to the story.

I found it dif
Jun 23, 2012 Rachel rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: goodreads
Shades of Gray by Andy Holloman

The story takes us on the journey of John Manning, devoted Father, coping with the realities of life and finding himself in the unpredictable world of drugs. Drawing on his own background, Andy delivers a thoughtful and at times heartbreaking thriller.

I can't recommend this book highly enough. I gave it five stars and I don't give out that rating lightly. You won't be disappointed!

The plot is easy to follow, and moves along at the perfect pace. This book made me th
Trish Jackson
Jul 29, 2012 Trish Jackson rated it really liked it
White business owner John, forms an unlikely partnership with black drug dealer, Wanda. The only thing they have in common are their six-year-old daughters, and a need for extra cash.
John's brother, Travis is a crooked cop, but dotes on John's little girl, Lucy.
The dangerous liaisons in this character-driven story can only lead to one conclusion--death.
This book is fast paced and well written. The author managed to make the characters human, and made me care what happened to them with a very im
Maureen Hovermale
Dec 12, 2011 Maureen Hovermale rated it it was amazing
The novel starts towards the ending and then delves back into the events that led up to the scene of a car crash.

John Manning has had an accident, his young daughter Lucy's soft cries heard to his fast-fading consciousness. The scene is now set to deliver the proverbial path chosen; the one of good intentions and rightful reasonings.

Reading the subtext of the many and varied scenes, the reader will find that choices made against better judgement can only end differently than planned.
Michael McManus
May 15, 2012 Michael McManus rated it liked it
While I enjoyed the plot, I did not enjoy the read. I question giving away the climax at the beginning of the book, leaving the anti-climax all I had to look forward to. I also found there to be a lot of dialogue, which was often difficult to follow. I had to work back several times to make out who was doing the talking. I hope the author continues to write and takes this criticism as it is offered, constructively. I will read his next offering when it comes out.
Jun 20, 2012 Lisa rated it liked it
Creepy, wonderful. Loved the book. Loved the writing. Hated that the first chapter was the book's own spoiler. If only this author had stayed chronological, I would have thought it was suspenseful, intriguing. Instead, giving us the ending at the beginning, it was merely a slow dribbling descent to an area we had already visited. A bit more fleshing out of secondary characters would have been nice, as well.
Jan 09, 2014 Dizzy rated it it was ok
In theory this story should have been exciting, and the very ending wasn't too bad and I was able to get into it, but for most of the story I found the writing to be pretty flat. I did like the father/daughter relationship between John & Lucy.
Mar 04, 2012 Mariska rated it it was amazing
I loved reading the book SHADES OF GREY.
It's like seeing the story in your mind.

Everything that happent's in the book it feels like joyning the characters.So awesome.

And the beginning and the end are so WOW very touching
you never expact it to end it like that .Love it.

Shades of grey Is a book that I would recomment to everyone.

Cathy Speight
Aug 29, 2016 Cathy Speight rated it liked it
This was a slow-burner…I mean that in a good way, however. It ambled along at a steady pace, all the while holding my attention until the wow-I-never-expected-that ending, despite it linking back to the teasing prologue.

John’s travel business takes a nosedive after 9/ll when no one wants to get on a plane. He needs to stay afloat, and when his daughter, Lucy, his beautiful daughter, the light of his life, his sole reason for living, becomes ill with a life-threatening condition, he needs money f
Feb 27, 2012 Ana rated it liked it
It took me some pages to get into the story but I finally did. It’s easy to read and has a surprising twist. I have to admit I was expecting drama but not this kind.

I don’t want to say much about the plot because I don’t want to spoil it to anyone.

Title did not make sense but once you’ve finished the book, it does.
Feb 24, 2012 Wenny rated it it was amazing
Can I say that I love this book very much? Great story from beginning till the end. The ending totally surprised me as I never thought it's going to be like that. I almost burst into tears when I was reading it.

Anyway, Mr Andy Holloman did a great a job! I'm looking forward to read his second book. :)
Myra Harper
Feb 08, 2014 Myra Harper rated it really liked it
I just finished reading Andy Holloman's 1st book, "Shades of Gray". I have to say it was extremely well written. I often found myself thinking about the characters in the book when I wasn't reading. Wondering how I would handle the situations they were involved in and prayed I never would be caught up in those things. With those thoughts, it kept me returning as often as possible and wishing for more time to read. I left a few times heavy hearted, but still returned anticipating the next chapter ...more
Aug 04, 2012 Jan rated it liked it
People said they were reading Shades of Gray but this is not the one they were reading. I'm thinking this was better. Suspenseful and entertaining ...
Apr 26, 2015 Amy rated it it was ok
The writing was good. I read the entire book but the end just devastated me. It was so emotional. It really isn't a book I'd normally read.
Mar 25, 2014 MzMonka rated it liked it
This book was a hard start for me but once I began to get into it and recognize the characters it kept me interested. The writing is a bit choppy in the beginning, a lot of back story and how their lives become intertwined, but once through this the story takes off. The characters are unique, interesting and keep you interested. The story does keep you engaged and wondering what is going to happen next. I find this is key to a good suspense story. The ending was good and I enjoyed the book. Will ...more
David Butto
Aug 13, 2013 David Butto rated it it was amazing
Shelves: andy-hollmon
l loved it
it was different and very easy to read.
Toledo (T.J.)
Apr 12, 2013 Toledo (T.J.) rated it liked it
Lots of unexpected turns, so kept you reading.
Jan 17, 2012 Silverana rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-reads
John Manning is a single parent who finds out that his daughter, Lucy, needs a transplant which will be very costly. After the 9/11 attack his travel agency loses customers making it difficult for John to handle Lucy’s treatment. Through his own agency he meets Wanda and her daughter Tonya which leads to John’s involvement with drug dealing.

Shades of Gray is told from the point of view of more than one character and it’s amazing how their stories come together. John is a man with a good, clear
John Darling
Aug 16, 2012 John Darling rated it it was amazing
This is a very good book. I am a HUGE John Grisham fan (I have all his books in hardback, most First Editions) and this book reminded me of him. I enjoyed the way that seemingly separate stories came together in the end. It is well written and well thought out. Anyone who loves a mystery NEEDS to read this book.

A note to the author, though, is needed.

I suggest you find a competent literary attorney and SUE the producers of "Breaking Bad" for plagiarism. There are just too many similarities betw
Jan 17, 2013 Tracee rated it really liked it
What a great first! Shades of Gray is Any Holloman’s debut novel, way to go. I had such an easy time reading this book, the characters were well thought of and planned and very relatable. I though the characters were very believable which always make a story easy to read. John Manning is like most fathers he would do anything for his daughter Lucy and when certain events happen that he cannot control, he makes some desperate decisions. This is definitely a story of love and loss and desperation. ...more
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Just like the protagonist in my novel, Shades of Gray, I was the owner of travel agency for 12 years (mostly in the 90′s). But this is the only similarity between myself and John Manning! (I never ventured into the cocaine business, I swear.)

I grew up in Greenville, NC and graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a degree in Economics. All through high school and college
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