In Shades of Grey, book two of the Alexis Stanton Chronicles, J.C. Phelps creates an ideal sequel. The story continues where Color Me Grey left off and carries the continuing story arc of Alex Stanton - also known as Ms. Grey - and her work as an agent with White and Associates. Though the books are connected, each one tells a succinct and contained story so they can be enjoyed individually as episodic adventures. Of course, once the reader has a taste of Alex Stanton's life, one book is definitely not enough!
Once again it is the endearing characters that fill this novel with heart. Alex is kind and caring, but also sassy and strong - keeping pace with her male colleagues. The relationships in the book are realistic and believable and the story delves deeper into Alex's family and her growing friendships with her coworkers. The romantic tension between Alex and Mr. White continues to build, and Alex is all the more likable for her character's wisdom and integrity. She doesn't simply fall into bed with the men she's attracted to but thinks honestly about her relationships and the results of romantic attachments.
Phelps keeps the action high and layers on the intrigue throughout the book. It's a delight to witness Alex develop her skills, holding her own as the heroine, as tough and talented as her male counterparts. For those that loved Color Me Grey, Shades of Grey is a wonderful continuation. The third book in the series Reflections of Grey also promises more of the same, and I can't wait to read it!
(reviewed 4 months after purchase)