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The Gray Chamber

(True Colors)

4.41  ·  Rating details ·  174 ratings  ·  156 reviews
Step into True Colors -- a new series of Historical Stories of Romance and American Crime

Will Edyth prove her sanity before it is too late?

On Blackwell Island, New York, a hospital was built to keep its patients from ever leaving.

With her late father’s fortune under her uncle’s care until her twenty-fifth birthday in the year 1887, Edyth Foster does not feel pressured to
Paperback, 256 pages
Published January 1st 2020 by Barbour Books
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Average rating 4.41  · 
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 ·  174 ratings  ·  156 reviews

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Nov 23, 2019 rated it liked it
"Mothers never fail to present their daughters as a marriageable option...[Edyth Foster was] of the few women who had her future secured without needing to put on a facade to secure a husband's pocketbook." The year was 1887, the place was New York City.

Edyth, a twenty-four year old "free spirit", answered to the beat of her own drum. She enjoyed riding her velocipede "in lieu of a respectable carriage". She preferred uncorseted, split skirts to fashionable gowns. "Books were too quiet a
Deanne Patterson
Dec 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Deanne by:

She lifted her lips to him. His brows shot up and he grinned, that tantalizing dimple appearing in his cheek. " What's this ? I suppose you're asking for a kiss ?"
" That would be most agreeable ,sir. "

Quote from The Gray Chamber by Grace Hitchcock.

I have been really enjoying this True Colors series Barbour has put out. It's a fictional crime series based on true historical crimes.
The majority of the story takes place on Blackwell Island, New York in an asylum built to prevent it's patients from
Jan 02, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A chilling fictional account based on true happenings at the Blackwell Lunatic Asylum in NYC back in the late 1800's. Women were forcibly committed for any reason, and not expected to ever leave.

Edyth Foster, a woman of 24, was under the guardianship of her uncle after her parents died in an accident. She was a likable, unconventional young woman who rode her bicycle around town, wore different clothing, and took fencing lessons from Raoul Banebridge, whom she fell in love with.

Her uncle,
Oct 06, 2019 rated it really liked it
I was hooked by the time I was 25% through this book. It's not your typical chick lit, & it's based on actual historical events. The protagonist is a strong, strong-willed, unconventional young woman who used her position to live a life of intention instead of one of leisure, which cost her her freedom & very nearly her life.
Karen Kay
I received this from for a review.

"Finding a loophole her father's will, Edyth's uncle whisks her off to the women’s lunatic asylum just weeks before her birthday. Do any of Edyth’s friends care that she disappeared? At the asylum she meets another inmate who confesses that she is Nellie Bly, an undercover journalist for The World."

Good, clean story with a nice ending. Great descriptions of life and conditions Edyth had to endure.

3 stars
Jan 13, 2020 rated it really liked it
If you have not read any of the True Colors series, a series based on true American crimes, I highly recommend that you do. Each book can be read as a standalone and is written by different authors. Not only have I enjoyed reading books by some of my favorite authors, I have met a few more through reading the books in this series. I first read Grace Hitchcock's writings in this series.

Ms. Hitchcock's lyrical prose paints a picture of the horrors of the women's asylum on Blackwell Island. While
Nov 07, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-in-2019
There is a lot to like about The Gray Chamber. There's the admirable hero and heroine, a heroine that is ahead of her time in participating in fencing and a novel based upon actual events.

After reading and very much enjoying The White City, my expectations for The Gray Chamber were rather high. The bits of humor that I loved in The White City were very rare in The Gray Chamber. The fictional story line wasn't as engaging for me. The change in Bane's opinion of Edyth from friendship to seeing her
Ashley Johnson
Oct 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I am really enjoying the True Colors series from Barbour Publishing! The Gray Chamber did not disappoint! First of all this cover is really haunting and really reflects the atmosphere that is created in the book. The story was intriguing and the characters were smart, capable, and easy to like. This novel really showcased some of the unfair and brutal treatments that some patients endured on Blackwell Island. It was chilling. As soon as Edyth entered the asylum I felt tense and anxious. There ...more
Diane Estrella
Jan 13, 2020 rated it really liked it
A little scary... but, in the best way possible.

This was a difficult book to read. The point of the "True Colors: Historical Stories of American Crime" series is to show real events in history that many people are not aware of or choose to ignore. The author used a lot of restraint in what she shared, and I'm sure in how much more she didn't. The story had plenty of suspense and could have turned to full-blown horror with the material it covered. The conditions described were beyond deplorable
Jan 08, 2020 rated it really liked it
3.5 stars
"Once you have tasted flight, you will forever walk the earth with your eyes skyward, for there you have been , and there you will always long to return." Leonardo da Vinci

Would she ever be free to walk the earth again with her eyes turned skyward, or had her world turned forever gray? Edyth Foster was terrified that color had been forever removed, that love had become forever denied, and that justice had been drowned in the depths of the sea. How had it come to this?

Karen R
Oct 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Another thrilling story in the True Crimes series! A romantic suspense that swept me up in the reading and held my rapt attention throughout. I couldn't read it fast enough!

"Fear not, for the Lord will be with you."
I found myself quickly attached to the main characters, and held my breath when it seemed all hope was lost. A few Bible verses and prayers of the characters, especially when in peril, kept the story from becoming too dark, and brought inspiration to the tale. I shudder to think
Dec 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
This one was a hard read. Going into it I knew that it could be a tough one. It was a very interesting story idea. Don’t let the darkness of the circumstances in this book drown out the hope and love that is also in this book. I had heard of Nellie Bly before this, so it was interesting to read more about her. I just want to caution readers that the violence in this book may be a trigger to some. Other than that, it was a pretty interesting book.

I received a complimentary copy from the
Kelly Bridgewater
Jan 01, 2020 rated it really liked it
The Gray Chamber by Grace Hitchcock is a delightful glance into the world of insane asylums during the 1900's. I have always known that asylums were some pretty creepy places during the 1900's, but Hitchcock does a fabulous job at showing the horrors that occurred to normal woman who were sent there by the men who claimed to love them. No wonder some of the women actually went crazy. Horrible things and abuse happened to them while they were imprisoned in these places. I couldn't imagine the ...more
Jan 10, 2020 rated it it was amazing
5 stars: 5/5 star rating
What a powerful and moving novel! While fictional, the story is based upon true facts. Women truly were mistreated and wrongfully imprisoned in mental asylums in the 1880's. I find it fascinating and equally horrifying, and knew of the terrible plight of the mentally ill in our history's past from my studies in psychology at university. I am very thankful that mental institutions now treat patients with dignity and kindness, as well as proving helpful to those who truly
Kat, aka
Dec 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley
This was a very good book! I liked the main characters, Edyth and Bane (Raoul). I really enjoy strong female characters, and Edyth definitely was one. Her uncle treated her really badly, and Edyth just grit her teeth and held onto her faith in order to make it through. Bane was also a strong character, and he did everything in his power to rescue the woman he loved, but it was definitely Edyth who was my favorite. I also enjoyed Nellie, for reasons I won't go into here (because of spoilers). All ...more
Maureen Timerman
Dec 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2019
This was a great read, but it did give me nightmares, and mainly because it is based on fact. This horrible place really existed, and was used to actually destroy people, sick and sad.
There are smiles to be found when we follow our daring Ms. Edyth as she goes about NY City, doing what we take for granted, but back in the late 1880’s was considered unladylike.
Then we have her Uncle, yes, he is her guardian, at least for a few more weeks, she will then be 25, and able to assume control over her
Suzie Waltner
Jan 03, 2020 rated it really liked it
The Gray Chamber is my favorite book thus far in the True Colors series to date. Grace Hitchcock excels at pulling readers into this story and making us care about the characters before throwing them into turmoil and peril.

Edyth is a fun and unique heroine, one I couldn’t help but want to be friends with. Bain also grew on me (once he opened his eyes to Edyth).

Edyth’s experiences at Blackwell’s Island, Bain’s search for her, and their subsequent escape while danger nips at their heels were all
Trisha Robertson (Joy of Reading)
This story is full of page-turning suspense. I fairly inhaled this story as I couldn’t put it down and didn’t want to look away! There were several twists and turns I wasn’t expecting and that really made for an exciting story.

Right from the beginning, I was pulled into the story and felt like I was right there walking through the events hand-in-hand with Edyth. I was part of the story, every high and low. I often found myself holding my breath and trying to not skip lines to see what would
Wanda Maynard
Jan 18, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Will the love of money bring evil in, like a stalking lion, after siezing its prey will hold on with unrelenting force? Or will love find a way to overcome evil and be victorious, and fight tooth and nail for freedom?

The GRAY CHAMBER, by Grace Hitchcock, in my opinion, is one of her best books yet! Don't get me wrong, all of her books are good. With this one she caused an explosion of pure emotions to hit every page. Some scenes truly came to life with action and surprise! That is what makes
Paula Shreckhise
What frightening things does the Gray Chamber hold? Edyth Foster is about to find out.
Grace Hitchcock weaves a tale based on the awful truth of women residing in the dreadful Blackwell Island Insane Asylum in New York in 1887. Ms. Hitchcock handles the facts admirably as she unfolds the barbarous treatment of women who may or may not be insane. Her research is extensive and includes first hand accounts of Nellie Bly who went undercover to write about and expose these injustices.
But not all is
Best In Suspense - Kelly Underwood
For Fans of Suspense, Historical Fiction, and True Crimes

This is the fourth installment in the True Color series which takes strange historical crimes and turns them into suspense-filled fiction stories. Grace Hitchcock’s The Gray Chamber focuses on a dark period in the late 1800’s surrounding the poorly run women’s lunatic asylum called Blackwell Island.

Edyth Foster’s life is about to take off. She’s set to take over her parent’s estate after their death, and she finds the love of her life. But
Jan 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Mental health is a sensitive subject in our culture today. Great care is taken as we realize just how powerful the mind is, and what we need to do to care for it. I have heard of asylums and the horrors that abounded in many in the past, but nothing has really gave me pause like The Gray Chamber did. How do you prove yourself sane and falsely accused in a place that is trying to provoke and prove the opposite?

While Edyth's character was rather eccentric for a woman at that time, she was by no
Cathy Cermele
Dec 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Grace Hitchcock has penned another compelling novel that I read in one day. I loved everything about this book from her thorough research to her incredible characters. The Gray Chamber is a heart wrenching story of fictional character Edyth Foster who was placed in a very real and horrible asylum on Blackwell Island, New York.

Edyth is such a free spirited young lady who enjoys her life as a single lady of leisure would do but unfortunately her relatives saw that as an opportunity to have her
Susan Snodgrass
Dec 23, 2019 rated it really liked it
'This place has stripped away the layers of thick skin, and I am raw, for I have had no one and nothing to lean on here but the Lord.'

1887. Edythe Foster, wealthy heiress, but under her uncle's care until she turns 25 (which is just months away), is a bit of a madcap, riding a velocipede and fencing, when her uncle finds a strange loophole in her father's will and commits her to a lunatic asylum just a few weeks before her birthday. No one else knows what he did and think her merely visiting in
Dec 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
The Gray Chamber by author Grace Hitchcock is the first in the True Colors Series I have read. This is a romantic suspense based on actual true events that happened in the horrendous Blackwell Island Asylum for Women in 1886. The book started a bit slow for me because I do not usually read gothic romance, but the fictional character of Edyth Foster is very interesting. Her parents died when she was younger and her father's brother is her guardian. Edyth is a bit of an eccentric woman of ...more
Dec 14, 2019 rated it liked it
I have enjoyed the novels in the True Colors series, ones about historical crime and unusual situations. This one was particularly interesting. Hitchcock did a good job of weaving historical fact and a fictional woman incarcerated on Blackwell's Island, a hospital for insane women. In the 1880s, women had few rights and few ways to find recourse when wronged. This novel paints a horrific picture of the conditions in the hospital, conditions that were being noted by the undercover female ...more
Dec 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I'm loving this series to the hilt!
This is my 2nd Hitchcock book and I love her! Anytime I see a book by her I just know it's going to be good.
This series sort of reminds me of the Twighlight zone show.
I fell in love with Edyth from the beginning. Her personality is sort of reminds me of me. She felt like she could have been my big sister. I really loved her.
You know, in a way this sort of reminds me of a Cinderella story. Edyth evil stepmother. I have one too by the way.
We never talk anymore
Yvette - Bookworlder
Edyth Foster is a vibrant character who practically leaps off the page, in one of the most joyful and dynamic first chapters I've read in a very long time. As Edyth, her fencing master/friend/longtime crush Raoul "Bane" Banebridge, and Edyth's family are each introduced, the stage is set for a Historical Fiction romp of the best sort.

All of which Grace Hitchcock plays off to perfection against the harrowing and potentially soul-crushing experiences that are to come. While some historical
I think I was expecting more out of this story than what was actually there. The cover looked very interesting to me, but it took a while for the action to happen. I was expecting more suspense/thrills/chills, etc., and I think that if I had known it was Christian fiction I wouldn't have picked it up. Everything is usually resolved pretty neatly in Christian fiction, which irritates me, because real life is not like that, and that was true with this story - a very sugary-sweet, almost too ...more
Reminding me of the old Alfred Hitchcock or Twilight Zone TV shows, this is definitely a suspense filled novel that leaves you with chills. Edyth Foster is a quirky young woman. She loves riding her velocipede (think old fashioned spider bike - big wheel in front little wheel at the back) and is a accomplished woman fencer! Her best friend is Raoul Banebridge, her fencing instructor. Edythe is a extremely wealthy orphan who has been raised by her uncle who has now married a lady who has no use ...more
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Grace Hitchcock is the author of The White City and The Gray Chamber from Barbour Publishing. She has written multiple novellas in The Second Chance Brides, The Southern Belle Brides, and the Thimbles and Threads collections with Barbour Publishing. She holds a Masters in Creative Writing and a Bachelor of Arts in English with a minor in History. Grace lives in southern Louisiana with her husband, ...more

Other books in the series

True Colors (7 books)
  • The White City
  • The Pink Bonnet
  • The Yellow Lantern
  • The Blue Cloak
  • The Green Dress
  • The Black Midnight