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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
Teaser Extract

An open book led on a table with a lilac flower resting on the open pages - featured image for Teaser Tuesday posts - caption reads 'Take A Look - Read The Book?'

This is a meme for all you ‘Page Surfers’ out there!

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




Frank was in the kitchen losing his mind as I sat in our bedroom, holding little Vincie close to my chest, trying to shield him from the sounds of slamming cabinet doors and screaming rage:

‘F**k this Goddamned place!’ Shit’s always disappearing on me here! I can’t find anything in this f***ing place!’

I shook from the inside, like a dying lightbulb crazily flickering, as I held Vincie, and feared he might have been intuiting my anxiety, soaking it in through his thin, delicate baby skin. My mind stirred with indecision about staying put or going in the kitchen to try to calm Frank down, and I remained as frozen as a mannequin until I heard the sound of shattering glass. I put Vincie down, which started him crying, loud and automatic, and ran in the kitchen to see every cabinet door open with Frank searching inside of them like a starving raccoon.

‘Can I help you find something?’ I tried to sound like a calm, composed salesclerk, but my voice crumbled in fear, and my stomach flipped like an acrobat.

‘What the hell happened to that bottle of vodka I had in the liquor cabinet?!’ His eyes were bottomless black, dark and hollow like tunnels that go nowhere.

‘I’m sure you just misplaced it somewhere Frank.’

‘What are you kidding or something?! I never misplace anything! I bet you that Cosmo is doing something with it. One of his Goddamned science experiments or something!’ His arms were flailing in all directions like an orangutan. He continued on his search, sidestepping the broken glass, with his heavy feet pounding the floor from one side of the kitchen to the other.

‘Maybe you drank it all and forgot about it.’ I regretted saying this the minute my words hit the air, but I couldn’t think straight being one big tremble with my head feeling disconnected from my body.

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

If you still need to know more, check out those all important opening lines at:-

Book Beginnings On Friday

Just to help you get all those words into some context – check out the premise below.

Image of the author Grace Mattioli - Image revised September 2020


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?”

The mem host image for Teaser Tuesday, updated December 2016 'The Purple Booker'

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by Ambrosia at:-

The Purple Booker

Each week she shares her own teaser lines and invites other bloggers to do the same.

So if you have a few moments, why not stop by and see what’s on offer this time, after all, you never know where that next great read is going to come from!

Written by

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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    • Hi Laura,

      I don’t think it would be giving too much away to let you know what is probably all too obvious from those lines – Frank and Donna have a very volatile relationship, which threatens to overwhelm them at any moment!

      A very powerful part of the storyline!

      Thanks for stopping by and I hope that all is well with you 🙂

  • That’s quite a powerful excerpt, starting with the opening sentence! I’m exhausted just from reading this tiny bit! I’ll be curious to see your final review of this.

    • Hi Kelly,

      This book touches on so many different societal and familial issues, although it doesn’t really delve too deeply into any of them. It seems that Donna is trying to solve everyone else’s problems while her own world is falling apart around her. I don’t think I could live with either of these characters!

      Review follows soon! 🙂

  • This is not a book for me, but I can clearly see the appeal. I think this kind of extracts from books are very helpful, to see a bit more than the blurb and decide if the topic and style are interesting or not.

    • Hi Anca,

      I generally make choosing a book a bit more methodical I’m afraid. I’ll generally browse the genre shelves I most enjoy for any covers or authors which particularly catch my eye, then read the premise and decide.

      I never bother opening a book to look inside – what’s the point?

      Now I know folks who will only buy a book if they like the size of the writing, or the book is a certain thickness so that they can hold it in one hand!

      My SIL will be a ‘first page browser’, then she will ‘surf’ a few middle pages, then read the last page. Nine times out of ten, she will then put the book back on the shelf because she either doesn’t like the sound of the story, or that the ending isn’t what she expected!

      Needless to say, I don’t go book shopping with her – it’s just too stressful 🙂

      Thanks for taking the time to comment, even though this isn’t a book for you, I appreciate the interesting observations you always make 🙂

  • Thank you so much for sharing this teazer, Yvonne. This is one of the heaviest scenes in the book and although Frank is an abusive alcoholic, he also has a fun and funny side, and is intrinsically a good person, as revealed by his passionate concern for such issues as the racial Injustice that pervades our criminal justice system. But please keep in mind that this book is also filled with humor and many heartfelt moments as well as thoughtful insights about life and how to live it.

Written by Yvonne