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Reviewed by Lisa McCombs for Readers' Favorite
Gray Girl by Susan I. Spieth is an intriguing documentation of life as a female plebe at West Point. While Cadet Jan Wishart struggles to fit into the predominately male class of future Army officers, she discovers the obstacles in her way are not only military. Women at West Point are frowned upon. As Jan and her fellow plebes, Angel and Kristi, band together to prove their military worth, they are also faced with an inequality that extends deeper than sexual harassment. There is a rapist on the loose and it falls to these three women to discover his identity before one of them is next on his list of conquests. Sprinkle in the mystery of Jan’s faceless champion, identified only as Skip, and West Point mirrors a truly gray existence.
Susan I. Spieth weaves a haunting story in one of the most prestigious military academies in American history. As a former West Point graduate, author Spieth intertwines reality with fiction. Authentic situations, believable language, and a realistic narrative give a unique take on a structured education many readers will only experience through a pen and paper avenue. Gray Girl removes any glamor associated with the Ivy League status of West Point. Fittingly addressed as an all-gray existence, Gray Girl is a dark and ominous look at a privileged education gained only as a result of exceptional academics and steadfast dedication to the role of military importance. Fans of realistic fiction, military narratives, mystery, and even romance will enjoy this award-winning novel.