At the center of Mary Monroe's "In Sheep's Clothing" is twenty-eight year old Trudy Bell. Seeking to become her own woman, Trudy's search for herself truly begins when she lands a job at a travel agency. Published by Kensington Publishing Corporation, "In Sheep's Clothing" (ISBN: 0-7582-0345-4) might appeal to readers who enjoy mainstream fiction that also contains a touch of mystery, suspense, and adventure.
The story's conflict begins in the book's first sentence, immediately involving the reader. Complications arise that are likely to bring readers to the proverbial edges of their seats, keeping them turning the pages as they continue on with Trudy Bell's journey. A satisficing climax and conclusion complete the story. There is also a list of questions provided at the back of the book that a book club might use to fuel its discussion of the novel.
Through first person point of view, the author does an excellent job at creating complex characters that readers can thoroughly see and hear through Trudy Bell's point of view. It has been said that the narration of a first person point of view character can not always be trusted, but the author presents Trudy Bell in a way that made me trust Bell's viewpoints and opinions of the other equally well-rounded characters Permanent Trudy being involved with some of the deception that occurs in the story. Quirkiness and unique physical attributes also help make the characters stand out.
"In Sheep's Clothing," written after Mary Monroe fell victim to identity theft, touches on the themes of self-identity, envy, revenge, betrayal, and race. The book also addresses the pursuit of happiness, and whether or not the grass is really greener on the other side.
The first Mary Monroe novel that I had read, I found the book well-written, fast-paced, and engaging. There were even a couple of moments when I laughed aloud. Usually a consistent mystery and suspense reader, I considered reading "In Sheep's Clothing" as stepping outside of my box. It was a detour I was glad I had taken. I believe other readers will not be disappointed, either, if they were to read the book, too.
Copyright CM Clifton