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Sharing our love for authors, and the stories they are inspired to tell.

‘The Bird That Sang In Color’
by Grace Mattioli
First Lines

 

THIS IS A MEME FOR ALL YOU ‘FIRST PAGE BROWSERS’

Cover image of the book 'The Bird That Sang In Color' by author Grace Mattioli

THE BIRD THAT SANG IN COLOR‘ by GRACE MATTIOLI

BOOK BEGINNINGS / FIRST LINES

PROLOGUE

“What pictures will you have of yourself by the end of your life? By pictures, I mean drawings, not photographs. A photograph is easy. A drawing is earned. I’ve begun contemplating this question only in recent years, but once I started, I couldn’t stop, and these days, I’m always seeing my life in pictures. For this, I thank my brother, Vincent. He taught me how to untie my hands so that I could be free to draw. He taught me to draw my own pictures instead of copying somebody else’s. He taught me to use markers because colorful pictures are better than those that blend into the background. And with his unintentional guidance, I made some really great drawings in the style of his own art that hangs on my walls. I look up at it and remember a long-ago time, when he and I sat in his old room in our old house listening to albums. It was before I devised the great plan that would become my life. A time before Frank, my children, my grandchildren. Before I went to college and before I taught in college. It was when I could see the world for what it is and my brother in all humble greatness”

Cover image of the book 'The Bird That Sang In Color' by author Grace Mattioli

So, you have taken a sneak peek, would you read the book?

Let me know what you think in the comments section below.

Just to give you an extra helping hand, here is the book’s premise …

Image of the author Grace Mattioli - Image revised September 2020

THE BIRD THAT SANG IN COLOR‘ by GRACE MATTIOLI

Cover image of the book 'The Bird That Sang In Color' by author Grace MattioliPart family drama and part self-actualization story, this is about Donna Greco, who in her teens, subscribes to a conventional view of success in life—and pushes her freewheeling, artistic brother, Vincent to do the same. However, he remains single, childless, and subsists in cramped apartments. She harbors guilt for her supposed failure until she discovers a sketch-book he’d made of his life, which prompts her own journey to live authentically.

While this textured story combines serious issues such as alcoholism, death, and family conflict, it’s balanced with wit and humor and is filled with endearing, unforgettable characters.

The story spans decades, beginning in 1970 and ending in the present. Readers will be immersed in this tale as it poses an intriguing question:

“What pictures will you have of yourself by the end of your life?”

A picture button for book beginnings at Rose City Reader

You might also like to visit Gilion, over at ‘Rose City Reader‘, where you can share links to the book beginnings from her own reading schedule and that of many of our fellow bloggers.

There are always plenty of new authors and titles to be discovered and you never know where that next ‘must read’ is going to come from!

Written by
Yvonne

I can’t remember a time, even as a child, when I haven’t been passionate about books and reading.
I began blogging, when I realised just how many other people out there shared my passion for the written word and I have been continually amazed at the wealth of books that are available and the amount of great new friends I have made, from literally 'The Four Corners Of The World'.

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14 comments
    • Hi Kelly,

      I have been following Grace’s career for many years now and this is the third book which tells the story of the same family, through the eyes of several different family members and over an extended period of time.

      The books do work as stand alone stories though, as they each strive to offer a unique message and the inter-connecting relationships are explained clearly in each story.

      I have already read this book, in preparation for my review date of December 5th 2020 and it really did make me think about the way I conduct my own life, which is why I liked those opening lines so much.

      Giving me markers and paper would do no good whatsoever, as my drawing skills are about the same as my 5 year-old, great nephews 🙂 However, when I actually took the time to concentrate and reflect, I could conjure up pictures and ‘paintings’ in my minds eye, enough to build my own life journey!

      ‘Different’ would be a good way to describe this book, but in a good way 🙂

    • Hi Lorraine,

      Painting or drawing pictures of one’s life is certainly an unusual concept, although I can see the value of it. I found myself looking at a framed photograph I have on my desk of myself and my late father, taken a few months before his death. I tried to imagine what I would have drawn to represent that day out, if there had been no photographic memory and the extra details I would have included surprised me, as they were many and varied.

      One of the many ideals this story seeks to challenge, is that we shouldn’t try, even with the best of intentions, to organise and redirect other peoples lives for them, when they may be quite happy and content as they are.

      It is a really thought provoking story, which I thoroughly enjoyed 🙂

    • Thank you so much Laurel! I hope you will be able to check out this book. It is the third in my Greco Family Trilogy. Although it’s not essential to read the other two books, if you want to read them, the first is free on Amazon and other online booksellers and you can get the second for free when you sign up for my newsletter at my site.

      Peace,
      Grace

    • Hi Anne,

      No! I’m afraid there are no actual illustrations in the book, although the writing is so beautifully descriptive throughout that I could visualise them quite clearly, if I closed my eyes.

      The story is more about Donna trying to walk her own path and find her place in life, rather than Vincent, who has settled onto a pathway which suits him, although it may not be Donna’s choice for him. It isn’t until Vincent has made the ultimate sacrifice (I’m not giving away any more than that – spoiler alert!), that Donna works things out though.

      I hope you enjoy this one as much as I did 🙂

    • Thank you so much Anne. I hope you will be able to check out this book. It is the third in my Greco Family Trilogy. Although it’s not essential to read the other two books, if you want to read them, the first is free on Amazon and other online booksellers and you can get the second for free when you sign up for my newsletter at my site.
      Peace, Grace

    • Hi Becki,

      Whilst this is very much a work of fiction and self-actualization, the author does come from a similarly extended family, so I am certain that there are probably characters from the book who are modelled, however loosely, on family members.

      The book’s cover art and title both reflect the storyline so well, which is always another selling point for me personally.

      Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to comment 🙂

  • Yvonne,
    Thank you so much for sharing my book on your most wonderful site. This is the third in my Greco Family Trilogy. Although it’s not essential to read the other two books, if you want to read them, the first is free on Amazon and other online booksellers and you can get the second for free when you sign up for my newsletter at my site.
    Peace,
    Grace

    • Hi Grace,

      I have had great fun, some smiles and some sad moments, reading this lovely trilogy.

      This form of fictionalised memoirs, are becoming very popular, in fact I am reading one now and have another scheduled for a few weeks time. As a self-confessed non reader of memoirs and biographies, I have really become invested in this style of writing and storytelling.

      I wonder if there are any more ‘episodes’ to this story, or if you already have your eye and sights set in a new direction, and on a new project!

  • Hello Yvonne,
    I smiled to see your blog, as I really enjoyed “The Bird that Sang in Color.” It’s relatable, warm and uplifting. It has always amazed me that siblings can emerge from the same upbringing with such different views of the world – and their place in it. Mattioli gives us characters we care about, so naturally we want to find out how things go for them. It inspired me to reflect on my own life, my pictures so far, and to better appreciate the small things.

    • Hi Alicia,

      Thank you so much for reaching out to connect, it always amazes me me how a particular book can bring people together, however transitory that may be, as we exchange our individual thoughts and ideas about a storyline.

      Although my review of ‘The Bird That Sang In Color’ is not scheduled for a few more days yet, like yourself, I set to thinking about my own life in pictures. Not the big events which are already permanently recorded in photographs, but the small things which happen(ed) on a daily basis, without me being conscious of it and which, when taken together, make me the person I am. I’m not sure that I could ever sit down and put pen to paper to draw my thoughts, like Vince does, however that it was enough to make me really think about my life and future, is a good start for me!

      Stay Safe 🙂 xx

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