Shadow of the Gypsy by Shelly Frome is a Page-Turning Mystery That Explores the Aftermath of Past Mistakes

January 05 10:04 2023
Shadow of the Gypsy by Shelly Frome is a Page-Turning Mystery That Explores the Aftermath of Past Mistakes
Shelly Frome’s Shadow of the Gypsy is a genre-bending novel that will keep you guessing from start to finish.

Shadow of the Gypsy is a ground breaking crime mystery where the aftermath of the past has to be dealt with sooner or later. The story follows Josh Bartlett, who has been living his life in hiding. Holed up in the quiet and secluded Blue Ridge Mountains, he looks forward to the day he can return to his hometown of Litchfield, Connecticut and reunite with his childhood love, Molly. It’s just around the corner — or so he thinks. But Josh’s idyllic hopes for the future remain just out of reach when his worst nightmare comes to life and his past comes back to haunt him. As the book goes on, we learn more and more about Josh’s childhood and his relation to the mysterious Zharko, the man who has sent Josh into hiding to begin with. When Zharko returns, it is clear that he has come to settle a debt; what exactly that debt is isn’t so clear to Josh. In fact, the only thing that is clear is that Josh cannot afford to run from the past any longer.

It was a provocative chance to come to terms with a harrowing childhood experience by transforming it into a fictional account and adding a love story,” says author Shelly Frome. A multi-award-winning author, professor emeritus of dramatic arts and former professional actor, Frome brings a unique, almost cinematic flair to storytelling, providing an uplifting escape from mundane day-today reality. With Shadow of the Gypsy, his goal was to remind readers that it’s never too late to discover one’s true sense of self and find one’s place in the world. “I want readers to realize it’s possible to go through a latent rite of passage, reclaim your true self and renew a long-lost love.”

While Shadow of the Gypsy offers an exciting take on the crime mystery genre, it’s no standard whodunit. The real mystery of the story is in the slow-burning revelation of Josh’s past and the details of his connection to Zharko. It is this quality that makes Shadow of the Gypsy so uniquely rewarding. It is clear that Frome is having fun as he directs and misdirects our attention and creates and subverts meaning, piquing our curiosity and setting us up for a payoff that no one can anticipate. Additionally, the disclosure of backstory juxtaposed with the fast-paced action makes for a unique rhythm that challenges the conventions of a traditional crime mystery. Frome takes this innovation further by including elements from other genres such as suspense and romance, offering an exciting way to learn about the other characters. If you can surrender to the current, allowing yourself to be carried along by Frome’s unique writing style, indelible wit and robust cast of quirky characters, you’re sure to enjoy the experience. 

Shadow of the Gypsy has received positive reviews from some of the most well-renowned literary organizations, authors, and reviewers around the world. Jaden Terrell from Mystery Writers of America writes, “By turns charming and chilling, Shadow of the Gypsy is that rarest of gems, a crime novel that curdles the blood as it tugs on the heartstrings.” 

Shadow of the Gypsy is the only one of its kind. Perhaps it is Shelly Frome’s best novel, and at the very least, his most inventive. The book is available for sale on Amazon, Apple iBooks, and other online bookstores. Readers who enjoy crime fiction are encouraged to purchase their copy today:

About the Author

Shelly Frome is a member of Mystery Writers of America, a professor of dramatic arts emeritus at UConn, a former professional actor, and a writer of crime novels and books on theater and film. He also is a features writer for Gannett Publications. His fiction includes Sun Dance for Andy Horn, Lilac Moon, Twilight of the Drifter, Tinseltown Riff, Murder Run, Moon Games, The Secluded Village Murders and Miranda and the D-Day Caper. Among his works of nonfiction are The Actors Studio: A History, a guide to playwriting and one on screenwriting, Shadow of the Gypsy is his latest foray into the world of crime and the amateur sleuth. He lives in Black Mountain, North Carolina. To learn more, please visit:

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