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Shades of Honor (Grayson Brothers, Book 1) | [Wendy Lindstrom]

Shades of Honor (Grayson Brothers, Book 1)

Prepare to fall in love with the Grayson brothers in Shades of Honor, the first novel in the best-selling series by award-winning author Wendy Lindstrom. Haunted by a gruesome war and his own dark secrets, former Union soldier Radford Grayson returns home, seeking a loving reunion with his brothers and a place where he and his young daughter can make a home. Desperate for peace, Radford is ambushed by his unexpected and forbidden love for Evelyn - his brother's fiancée.
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Publisher's Summary

New York Times Best-Selling Series

RITA Award winner!

The one woman he can't have is the only woman he wants.

Everything Radford Grayson wanted was in his hometown: his beloved mother and brothers, and the unscarred part of himself he'd left behind. After surviving a gruesome war, all Radford wants is to work the family sawmill and make a real home for his young daughter. But Evelyn - his brother's fiancée - reaches into his darkness with her healing love and makes him feel whole again for the first time in years. Torn between his unexpected and forbidden love for Evelyn and a desperate need to honor and protect his brother, Radford discovers that his fiercest enemy is his own heart. The one woman he cannot have is the only woman he wants.

©2002 Wendy Lindstrom (P)2013 Wendy Lindstrom

What the Critics Say

"Awesome underlying emotional power…guaranteed to move you to tears." (Romantic Times)
"Superbly written, beautifully poignant." (John Charles, American Library Association)
"A perfect ten...should not be missed!" (Romance Reviews Today)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.9 (236 )
5 star
 (74)
4 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Overall
3.9 (220 )
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Story
4.0 (216 )
5 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Rosemary Willoughby, OH, United States 12-27-13
    Rosemary Willoughby, OH, United States 12-27-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
    18
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    "Honor, Love and Family"
    Would you listen to Shades of Honor again? Why?

    I love listening to Shades of Honor. The story was an emotional journey to true love and acceptance of our past pain. The story of Radford and Evelyn was a tearful trip, but well worth it.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Shades of Honor?

    When Radford's daughter, Rebecca, asked Evelyn if she would be her "momma". The hope and love in those words brought tears to my eyes.


    What about Julia Motyka’s performance did you like?

    Julia Motyka gave a flawless reading. She made me feel the emotions and desire of the characters.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    The death of Evelyn's father, William, broke my heart as did Rebecca's reaction to the news.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ruth APPLE VALLEY, CA, United States 10-15-13
    Ruth APPLE VALLEY, CA, United States 10-15-13 Member Since 2015

    BlithelyBookish Reviews

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Sweet, Poignant, Romantic! A Wonderful Love Story"

    Fredonia, New York, August 1870

    He always knew he’d come back. Everything he’d ever wanted was here.
    ---

    Shades of Honor is the first book in the Grayson Brothers series. It’s a post Civil War romance, this first book being the eldest brother’s story. Radford is tired of running from the nightmares of death, pain, and destruction, and returns home to work with his brothers at the family’s lumber mill. But he arrives to find that running kept him away too long and he may no longer be welcomed home.

    My Review:

    I’ve seen these books popping up here and there in friends reviews and had been planning to read them one day. When the author contacted me and asked if I’d review her audio book, I was more than a little excited! I’m going to break my review down by the actual story, and then the audio book.

    The Book:

    The Grayson world in Freedonia is lovely. Such a peaceful post war time when things and families are returning to normal again. The characters Ms. Lindstrom has given us are honorable, hard working, passionate people. They've known great loss but they have hopes and dreams and refuse to give up. They keep going, heads held high, always striving to do the right thing.

    Pre-, Post-, and current Civil War is one of my favorite time periods to read about in my historical romance novels. There’s something about the era – the plantations, the gentility of the South… it’s such a romantic setting. However, Shades of Honor is not set in the South, there’s nothing to speak of money, no balls or Scarlet O’Hara dramas - overmuch, but I did enjoy it. It’s a very sweet, slow paced, day-in-the-life kind of story about finding that yes, you can go home again, but it might not be on your own terms.

    The Audio:

    The Grayson Brothers series is being narrated by Julia Motyka, and I’ll say this right up front: She has a beautiful voice! It’s clear, passionate, and captures perfectly the deeply emotional side to the story. The only problem I have with Ms. Motyka’s narration is that sometimes I felt there was too much of a dramatic voice given to certain scenes. There were poignant moments brilliantly read where Ms. Motyka had me fighting back the tears, but for the most part I think she could have taken it down a notch without taking away from the overall emotional depth of the story.

    The Bottom Line:

    Though not without some flaws, Shades of Honor is an uplifting, entertaining read. If you enjoy charming, romantic, passionate stories with emotionally scarred heroes looking to find ‘home’ again, this might be right up your alley.

    I’m rating the written work 3.75 stars and the audio book 3.5 stars.

    My sincerest thanks to Wendy Lindstrom for providing me with a copy of this audio book in exchange for an honest review.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Julie Lakeway, TX, United States 09-26-13
    Julie Lakeway, TX, United States 09-26-13 Member Since 2013

    I didn't think anything could beat reading a great novel. Audiobooks proved me wrong. I've become an audiobook junkie!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
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    "A Beautiful Story!"

    The writing and the performance grabbed my heart from beginning to end. I could feel the emotions of Radford and Evelyn as they both struggled to do the right thing for everyone around them even while they yearned for the healing they instinctively knew they'd find with each other. The whole cast of characters, from Evelyn's aging father and Radford's traumatized daughter to those oh-so-appealing Grayson brothers made living in Fredonia, New York through the magic of audio a pure pleasure. This is one to savor long after the final chapter. Can't wait for the rest of the Grayson men.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Denise 08-26-13
    Denise 08-26-13 Member Since 2003
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Radford....is he honorable?"
    What did you like best about this story?

    The inner struggle that Radford has to deal with....ptsd, and the attraction to someone's fiancé...


    Have you listened to any of Julia Motyka’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    no


    Any additional comments?

    A good read, the author keep me on a see-saw....do I want him to get the girl...or...should he pack up his daughter and move away. Is the attraction he feels more important that the love of his brother?


    Will AUDIBLE be brining the rest of the series to us?

    3 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jackelyn 02-14-15
    Jackelyn 02-14-15 Member Since 2011

    Addicted to listening

    ratings
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    "Swept away"

    I wasn't too sure about this book when I read the blurb but I was throughly swept away by the telling of the tale... I was living their lives with them feeling their joy and laughing and crying when things hurt. A great story.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    stefani westfall lexington, ky, US 02-14-15
    stefani westfall lexington, ky, US 02-14-15 Member Since 2014
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    "Wonderful book"

    Loved this book. Its so much better listening to it on audio. Deeply moving and tender.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    plaidninja814 11-16-14 Member Since 2014
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    "Beautiful and emotional story - I loved it!!"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I would definitely recommend this book. The characters are realistic and manage to persevere during a difficult family situation and time period. The hero is a Civil War veteran who is trying to reintegrate into his family and deal with the experiences of his past.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The situations and character's reactions were honest, They made mistakes but tried to right their wrongs and stick to their values. I liked seeing that even through anger, betrayal, and emotional issues such as PTSD, the family stayed together.


    Have you listened to any of Julia Motyka’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    I have never listened to any of Julia Motyka's performances before, but I will definitely be listening to her again in the future. She is a very talented narrator who differentiates the characters well. Each character's voice remained the same throughout the performance and I always knew who was speaking.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    There were many moving moments in this story, but one that remained with me was the death of Evelyn's father. Radford stayed with her the entire time and mourned with her.


    Any additional comments?

    I loved reading 'Shades of Honor' and the narrator's performance made it even better. I will definitely be looking for more of her work, hopefully in the rest of the Grayson Brothers series.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    LaurelOlivia Carlsbad, ca, United States 11-16-14
    LaurelOlivia Carlsbad, ca, United States 11-16-14 Member Since 2013

    LauralOlivia

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Family and love in Civil War times"
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    Yes, I enjoyed the listen. I like the time period of the Civil War. This story was really about family, friends, love, betrayal and honor. I usually like action and humorous banter, this was a nice surprise though.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Shades of Honor (Grayson Brothers, Book 1)?

    When the little girl started to come out of her shell. It was more about small memorable moments.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    There was not one outstanding scene. There was a compilation of scenes.


    Do you think Shades of Honor (Grayson Brothers, Book 1) needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

    The characters are good. There is another book about one of the other brother's love story.


    Any additional comments?

    There was good character development of the two main characters, the secondary characters could have been developed more. I think that it brings the community and town etc. to life. More details on the personalities of the brothers Boyd and Duke would have contributed to making the story more in depth. More background on the secondary characters would make it feel like it was not just a love story. It had small amounts of the horrors of war, that was crucial to making the story work. It is an easy read not complex. I did enjoy it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    PattiC2 maine 05-07-14
    PattiC2 maine 05-07-14

    reviews for fun

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "I could not tolerate the narrator"

    A good narrator can make or break an audiobook in this case I think it was the latter. I could not tolerate the narrator. I tried.

    1 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Angela 04-11-14
    Angela 04-11-14 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Avoid any novel that starts with "Shades of...""
    What disappointed you about Shades of Honor?

    I read all the reviews and it sounded like a really good story, I was in the mood for a good romance. I was disappointed to find that I could not agree at all with any of them. I was expecting the men to be strong passionate characters but they came out as wimpy and rigid, the females were sickly sweet and their characters didn't fit to the kind of behaviour I expected for women in that era, and I didn't enjoy the story-telling to the daughter. I was bored by the plot of the book which I could have guessed just by reading the summary and reviews. I played it at double speed just to get through it.


    Would you ever listen to anything by Wendy Lindstrom again?

    Nope.


    What character would you cut from Shades of Honor?

    The grandfather and the daughter.


    1 of 4 people found this review helpful
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