Imagine a world where you can only see one color and with that one color your whole life has been decided for you. What job you will have, who you will marry, where you will live, questions of which Eddie Russett thought he knew the answers to in Shades of Grey, the first in a trilogy by Jasper Fforde.
Shades of Grey is all about the colors not about the Benjamin's. Different people see different colors and depending on which color of the light spectrum is perceived stems the social hierarchy. For instance, seeing purple ranks higher than seeing green or red and the "greys" who see no color are at the bottom of the barrel. Shades of Grey is set in a post-catastrophe world and for reasons unknown color is fading in the world and it is being synthetically made from pre-catastrophe relics to add color back into the surroundings. However, there is a double-edged sword in all this color business. On the one side color is used for medicinal purposes, while on the other side staring intensely at certain shades of green for example could be quite intoxicating, enough to provide a deadly overdose.
Shades of Grey follows Eddie Russett, a red climbing up the social color ladder until a mistake gets him banished. In his exile he meets Jane, a suspicious grey who questions all the rules and soon has Eddie thinking twice about the world around him. This hardcover with over 400 pages will lead you into a world like no other and guide these two colorful characters through a social satire filled with action, thrills, romance and a chuckle here and there.