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Breathing in Colour by Clare Jay

Breathing in Colour

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A heart wrenching story about a mother going in search of her daughter who has been reported missing in India. The story moves back and forth between the mother’s story and the daughter's diary entries building the picture of this fractured relationship. A beautifully told story that may have you grabbing for a box of tissues so keep them handy.


Breathing in Colour by Clare Jay

‘Your child is missing - presumed dead.’

Hours after receiving the phone call that every mother dreads, Alida Salter flies to India to search for her backpacker daughter. The discovery of disturbing collages in Mia’s hotel makes Alida suspect a connection between the disaster that fractured their relationship thirteen years ago, and Mia’s recent, mysterious disappearance.

Mia is no ordinary girl. Growing up with the sensory condition synaesthesia - where she sees the world in a kaleidoscope of shapes, colours and smells - she has gone through life with the vivid imagination of an artist, but for years she has shouldered an overwhelming burden of guilt.

It has been a difficult relationship, but now comes the toughest test of all…Alida must find the courage to trust her maternal instincts, or lose her daughter forever.


'A poignant and at times heart-breaking debut novel’ Kate Furnivall

About the Author

Clare Jay

Clare Jay's short stories and poetry have one prizes and appeared in anthologies. She has a PHD in Creative Writing and tutors the subject at university level. She has led 'Dreaming into writing' workshops at international conferences and has lived in five European countries and travelled extensively in South-East Asia.

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Book Info

Publication date

5th March 2009


Clare Jay

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Piatkus Books


288 pages


Family Drama
Literary Fiction
Reading Groups
eBook Favourites

Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)



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