Imagine a black and white world where colour is a commodity . . .
Hundreds of years in the future, after the Something that Happened, the world is an alarmingly different place.
Life is lived according to The Rulebook and social hierarchy is determined by your perception of colour. Eddie Russett is an above average Red who dreams of moving up the ladder by marriage to Constance Oxblood. Until he is sent to the Outer Fringes where he meets Jane - a lowly Grey with an uncontrollable temper and a desire to see him killed.
For Eddie, it's love at first sight. But his infatuation will lead him to discover that all is not as it seems in a world where everything that looks black and white is really shades of grey ...
If George Orwell had tripped over a paint pot or Douglas Adams favoured colour swatches instead of towels, neither of them would have come up with anything as eccentrically brilliant as Shades of Grey.
This inventive fantasy from bestseller Fforde (The Eyre Affair) imagines a screwball future in which social castes and protocols are rigidly defined by acuteness of personal color perception. Centuries after the cryptically cataclysmic "Something That Happened," a "Colortocracy," founded on the inflexible absolutes of the chromatic scale, rules the world. Amiable Eddie Russett, a young Red, is looking forward to marrying a notch up on the palette and settling down to a complacent bourgeois life. But after meeting Jane G-23, a rebellious working-class Grey, and a discredited, "invisible" historian known as the Apocryphal man, Eddie finds himself questioning the hitherto sacred foundations of the status quo. En route to finding out what turned things topsy-turvy, Eddie navigates a vividly imagined landscape whose every facet is steeped in the author's remarkably detailed color scheme. Sometimes, though, it's hard to see the story for the chromotechnics. 10-city author tour.
Only once before in my life have I ever felt such a pain from finishing a book. Seriously, I completely absorbed myself in it, from cover to cover one of the best books I've ever read, I need more!!!
This is my comfort book at the moment - beautifully written, intriguing concepts and I can't wait for the sequel.
Shades of Grey
Brilliant! Describes a well constructed fantasy world and is both thought provoking and funny. Can't wait for the next one in the series.