Astonishing Splashes of ColourBook - 2004
Booker finalist Astonishing Splashes of Colour takes its title from J. M. Barrie's description of Peter Pan's Neverland. It follows the life of Kitty, a woman who, in a sense, has never grown up. She lives an improvised life reviewing children's books, visiting her husband who lives in the apartment next door, and fostering a growing obsession to replace her lost child.
Kitty's strong, appealing personality drives this novel, as she relates her story in a jumbled state of consciousness. Her moods swing dramatically from high to low and are illuminated by an unusual ability to interpret people and emotions through colour. Kitty struggles to uncover the secrets of her childhood from her father and brothers, but their revelations threaten to overwhelm her tenuous hold on reality, leaving the reader feeling both sympathetic and horrified with her impetuous journey into madness. Skillful, unsentimental, fresh, and original, this is a sparkling debut by a writer of exceptional talent.