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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

3.8 (207 )
5 star
 (63)
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 (83)
3 star
 (37)
2 star
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Overall
3.9 (194 )
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Story
3.9 (190 )
5 star
 (64)
4 star
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3 star
 (38)
2 star
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1 star
 (8)
Performance
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  •  
    Deborah 10-20-13
    Deborah 10-20-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Embers grow into a Magnificent Love !!!"

    This book checks all of my boxes: Well-drawn passionate characters, intelligent writing, American history brought to life ---- paired with a superb narration that breathes life into it all !!! Overall effect is a breathtaking journey into the evolution of true love, family, and adaptation to the travails of real life.

    In this sweeping novel, a weary "accidental" soldier returns home to his beloved family in the Post-Civil War North, and struggles to come to terms with his past, his present, and his future. His return causes ripples in the lives of all who love him, as he tries to fit back into this family, that has also adapted to changes during his absence.

    I typically read over over 200 books per year, and while I will usually rate them, I rarely feel compelled to write a review. This book , however, is an extraordinary experience which is not to be missed. The author pens the human experience of personal growth with such skill, that the characters seem real. I feel that this novel could be a classic. You will care so much about the characters, that it becomes unputdownable ! Truly 5 stars and more. Well Worth your time and credit !!!

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    LR USA 10-19-13
    LR USA 10-19-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A deeply moving story, beautifully narrated"
    What did you love best about Shades of Honor?

    Every unforgettable character came to vivid life for me.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The scenes were rich in emotion.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    When Evelyn helps Radford face his inner demons. I also loved every scene with Grandpa and Rebecca.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    I laughed and cried--it's truly a powerful story.


    Any additional comments?

    I loved experiencing Shades of Honor as an audio book. I felt as if I got to enjoy a great performance as well as a great book!

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tracey R 12-11-13
    Tracey R 12-11-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "WOW!!!! Best stories I have read in 30+ years!!"
    What did you love best about Shades of Honor?

    Everything! At first I wondered if I was just having a mellow and melancholy day when I laughed and cried while listening to this story! Then after listening to the other books of this series I realized that it wasn't just the day I was having, but the story, author and wonderful narrator I was listening to that made me love this series!


    What did you like best about this story?

    How their family values are so much in the fore front of every book in this series. Amazing values, sense of caring and loving. Many family values are that now gone from our society in how to raise and give care to the children we love. This series make me almost jealous of the women in these mens lives, to find such a manly man would be amazing.


    Which character – as performed by Julia Motyka – was your favorite?

    She narrated them all so wonderfully! Men's were a little feminine but with the knowledge that they were loving, caring, giving men it was all good!


    Any additional comments?

    Not any hot and steamy sex scenes (which I don't mind, but) just wonderful stories about passion, life, family and love.
    I am on the 5th book in 3 days, I love Wendy and I have never heard of her before!

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Liz Santa Cruz, CA, United States 11-14-13
    Liz Santa Cruz, CA, United States 11-14-13 Member Since 2012
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    "Excellent Emotional Historical Romance"

    Description:
    Radford Grayson is a former Union soldier and when he returned home after the Civil War ended, he was too emotionally wounded to stay and help his brothers run the mill their father built. He returns again, five years later, this time with his four year old daughter in tow, ready to take his place alongside his brothers at the mill, but his brother Kyle is not happy to see him and sends him to help his fiance, Evelyn Tucker, run her father’s livery. Radford reluctantly agrees to help Evelyn at the livery, and begins to develop feelings for her.

    Why I read this book:
    The story appealed to me in so many ways:
    The setting: it’s set in the US after the Civil War, which was a nice change of pace from the Regency ballroom type historicals I usually read
    The hero: two words -- tortured hero
    The heroine: she’s not your typical heroine -- she wears boots and breeches and runs her father’s livery
    The romance set-up/conflict: the heroine is the fiance of the hero’s brother.

    What I liked:
    Radford and Evelyn were such well-drawn characters and their emotional journey felt really authentic. From the moment I read the description, I wanted to know how they could possibly get their HEA. Evelyn is Radford’s sister-in-law to be -- how could it possibly work out? The thing I love about romance novels is that you know there will be an HEA, so it’s all about how the author gets the characters there and this was a bumpy, but realistic ride and I was hooked from the first chapter.

    What I also liked:
    The secondary characters really added to this story. Radford has a four year old daughter and the relationship that develops between Rebecca and Evelyn is as important to the story as Radford and Evelyn’s relationship. I also loved the relationship between Evelyn and her father and his relationship with Radford and Rebecca.

    I listened to the audio version of this book and I thought the narrator did an excellent job conveying the emotion needed for this story. She did a good job with the various voices too - she had to voice a variety of characters -- from a four year old little girl to a man who’d suffered a stroke and she pulled them all off quite well. There were a few areas where the pacing was off, but it didn’t take away from my enjoyment of the story.

    If you’re looking for a well-written, emotionally rich historical romance with well-drawn characters you grow to really care about, and miss when you’re done reading, then I highly recommend this story.

    I was offered a copy of the audio book by the author in exchange for an honest review.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Elizabeth Sandia, TX, United States 11-07-13
    Elizabeth Sandia, TX, United States 11-07-13 Member Since 2012

    I just Love the Allure of a Great Romance...a Pair of Rose Colored Glasses...some Fine Wine, and a Subscription to Audible...

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Romance...Passion...Honor"

    Credit Worthy, Definitely!!

    Fall in love with the Grayson brothers, while traveling back to the post-Civil War era of the late 1800’s.

    How does a family recover and heal from the devastating consequences of surviving a war you may ask…with varying shades of honor. WOW.

    Shades of Honor: Grayson Brothers, Book 1 is a beautifully written, old-fashioned love story. Wendy Lindstrom has gifted her readers with well-developed storyline and characters that are strong, and passionate. They live with a purpose for distinction, and yet they also struggle with this high moral code. Their commitment to family is everything to them, and yet that very commitment is shakable. They are defined by their desire for integrity, uprightness, and, character...

    ...And this...is what our greatest heroes are made of…

    I really enjoyed this listen. You will too.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Monica E. Blood arizona 11-06-13
    Monica E. Blood arizona 11-06-13 Member Since 2011

    monica

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    "A touching story"
    What made the experience of listening to Shades of Honor the most enjoyable?

    I was really drawn into the story and couldn't stop listening. It was also a wonderful change to be in an historical era set in America instead of Regency or Victorian England. Those societal restrictions can get tiresome after awhile. This was my first historical romance that I listened to and I was pleased with the experience. I'm also looking forward to continuing this series and hearing the stories of all the Grayson men, especially as Kyle's is next. I not only recommend the story but this format. 4.5 stars


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    This was a really touching story as Radford Grayson epitomizes the tortured hero, having experienced unspeakable war action that he relives through nightmares. Evelyn is a special woman who helps him overcome his misery and provides tender care to his daughter. They are both honorable people trapped in an impossible situation that Kyle Grayson had a hand in creating and perpetuating. I liked how the story developed and was emotionally connected to both Radford and Evelyn. I actually missed them when the story ended.


    Which character – as performed by Julia Motyka – was your favorite?

    Same as above


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    I had moments of sadness where I came close to tears:)


    Any additional comments?

    The narrator did a good job in distinguishing characters and she managed the male characters skillfully. Her voice had a pleasant tone that worked for the story, even though the pacing was sometimes off.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Melissa Deckman 09-15-14
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    "Awesome story guaranteed to bring you to tears"

    I have never been a real fan of the typical romance novel. Then I read Shades of Honor and from there the rest of the Grayson Brothers series. Yes it is a romance novel, but it is a truly a story of honor, forgiveness, the love of family and the strength that comes with it. Ms. Motyka does an awesome job narrating. She reflects the emotion and love that is found between the characters beautifully. I would highly recommend this book and the rest of the series. Once you start, be prepared to little else. These books are impossible to put down.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    DK 04-28-14
    DK 04-28-14 Member Since 2012

    HATE spoilers! Enjoy HOT, sexy books. No vampires, paranormal, teens 4 me. Running out this type Audible-so on2 lighter romance/mystery :-(

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Historical Romance Written About Nontradition Era"
    What made the experience of listening to Shades of Honor the most enjoyable?

    In my experience MOST historical romances are set in England, Scotland, etc (modern U.K.) Refreshingly, this is set in America, post-Civil War.

    The premise and exploration of Radford (gag on the name) and his attempts at normalcy for himself and young daughter. An unlikely duo, he and Evelyn work to sustain her dad's business while strengthening the Grayson Lumber Empire.

    Lots of dimensions without being too busy. Where does the eldest Grayson fit in the family now that he has returned from the war? At the helm of the family industry?

    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.


    Any additional comments?

    Some descriptions of sex.

    A great find at $4.95! I look forward to listening to the rest of the series.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mary Oakville, Ontario, Canada 04-12-14
    Mary Oakville, Ontario, Canada 04-12-14 Member Since 2010
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    "Enjoyable listen."

    This was the first time I've listened to this author and I wasn't disappointed. It has it all: good character development, a credible and engaging plot, challenge and romance. The story of Radford, Evelyn and Kyle unfolds amidst a wonderful sense of family love and loyalty and personal responsibility and integrity. I can't wait to listen to others in the series.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Nyoka Brownstown, MI, United States 02-23-14
    Nyoka Brownstown, MI, United States 02-23-14 Member Since 2011

    Nyoka Mullins

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Wonderful Book"

    I can say this was one of the best book's I have listened to, I listened to it all at once, and never lost interest, excited to see the other series, and also good narration. if you don't have it...by all mean's try it..you won't be dissapointed

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
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