Mary Kennedy's Reviews > Shades of Grey

Shades of Grey by Clea Simon
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's review
Jul 02, 2010

it was amazing

Every amateur sleuth needs a sidekick and Dulcie Schwartz is fortunate to have Mr. Grey at her side.

Mr. Grey is quick-witted, resourceful and endlessly devoted. He’s has finely tuned instincts and a nose for ferreting out the truth.
Oh yes, and he happens to be a cat.

Mr. Grey is more than a garden variety house cat; he’s the ghost of Dulcie’s beloved pet feline, and it quickly becomes apparent that he’s more of a spirit guide” than a woo-woo presence in the book.

Dulcie, still mourning the loss of her pet, feels an immediate affinity with him when he crosses her path. Is he really an incarnation of Mr. Grey? Could it be possible? He has “long silver fur and a face more Siamese than Persian, the slanted eyes giving him an intelligent and inquisitive look.”

And he’s not only a gorgeous feline, but a talkative one. When Dulcie walks right into a crime scene, he gently chides her, “Dulcie, please go back outside. Go outside and dial 911.”

Is it the spirit of Mr. Grey speaking to her? Dulcie wonders if her imagination is playing tricks on her–perhaps it’s a grief reaction or maybe the heat is getting to her. But the fact remains: his advice is eerily on target. “Please be careful, Dulcie,” he tells her.”Trust, like faith, can weave spells.”

Anyone who has ever lost a pet can certainly relate to the notion that our beloved furry friends are somehow still “with us.” As Clea Simon said, “I came up with the idea of Mr. Grey after losing a beloved cat – and feeling like I was seeing him everywhere. It's very comforting, when you've lost a pet to feel like he's still there, watching over you, and my particular "Mr. Grey" was the cat of my single years, the wise and quiet companion who was always there for me. I think that's a common phenomenon - to keep seeing someone, human or animal, who you have lost. The feeling lives on, the love lives on, even after the corporeal being is gone.”

A multi-layered plot is another element in this delightful series and the reader is treated to a rare glimpse into the world of academia. Dulcie, a Harvard graduate student, is fascinated by eighteen century Gothic novels and is caught up in The Ravages of Umbria. The author cleverly passages from the book into Dulcie’s own musings, adding another dimension to the story and a new insight into Dulcie’s character.

The first release in Clea Simon’s Dulcie Schwartz series, SHADES OF GRAY (Severn House, September, 2009) has everything a mystery-lover could hope for–an engaging heroine, an intriguing plot, plenty of smart, sophisticated dialogue, and wonderful secondary characters.

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06/21/2016 marked as: read

Comments (showing 1-2 of 2) (2 new)

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Clea Simon Thank you, Mary! I hope you enjoy "Grey Matters" as much!

Mary Kennedy I know I will--it's on my TBR pile!! mary

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