The Fractured Hues of White Light
Publisher : Field Stone Press
Description
The Fractured Hues of White Light is an emotional journey that explores who we love and why we love them. Mother, father, daughter, siblings, lovers, spouses, and friends; it’s all love in some form. It is a story about Samantha Ryder, a young autistic woman who is an artist; it is because of her handicap that she often fails to articulate her emotions with an appropriate demonstration. Ironically, the ‘normal people’ who surround her are just as incapable of communicating their feelings, creating a sense of isolation full of things left unsaid. Samantha’s uncanny artistic ability is limited to being a novelty after her father encouraged her to create miniatures of the greatest hits of art history for a wealthy clientele. For years, she has filled sketchbooks with drawings that she feels mean nothing, yet they mean everything. Within the abstract scribbles are the portraits of the people who she loves; the quirk of her disability is how she is very aware of the emotions of her loved ones. They love her with unconditional bonds that vary in degrees; her mother Lenore’s maternal nurturing is sorely missed after her death when Sammy was six. Her father, Whitley, is a possessive narcissist, but his heart is always in the right place. Memories of the protective love of her father’s stepson, Guthrie, filtered into her adolescent fantasies. Her half-sister, Helena, exhibits a lackadaisical tolerance and irritable impatience, yet offers a clinging-vine possessiveness in spite of herself. The lingering romantic feelings of her friend and former lover, Sylvester, manifest in his boundless patience; their continued friendship stands firm on a foundation of trust. When Samantha agreed to marry Preston Ackerman, she initially believed that she could learn to love him, but the empty bond between them causes her to emotionally lose ground. As their marriage falls apart, Preston becomes dangerous, forcing her to go on a journey of self-preservation away from the familiar security of home. Her escape threatens to be her undoing.


The Story Behind This Book
The main character, Samantha Ryder, really fascinated me for a very long time (before she even had a name). She came from no one I ever knew... she's autistic, I never met anyone who is autistic, but... I first "met" the idea of her when I was taking a child psychology class in college (1980-1982) and I wrote a paper about autism. The mysterious condition interested me very much on a personal level that inspired me to write about it beyond that class paper. I was also taking a creative writing class that semester and I wrote a poem based on the ideas that came to me while I pieced together my paper (the poem was included in the paper, and the prof loved it!) The notion of color and emotions, art theory and art history, savants and autism continued to gather in my mind for years...I always knew I'd do something with it someday...ten years ago I started writing these things down for the first time, and this young woman with dark button eyes came into being as if she was always there, her stream-of-consciousness drawings and peculiar ways were almost second nature to me as if I have always known her...she could be me in some form since she's been with me for so long, but I'd like to think of her as her own character, created over time...no different from any other idea that inspires me to write books or paint pictures.




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Laura J. W. Ryan
I'm an artist, a writer, and I live in an old farmhouse on top of a windswept hill with my Fred, our son, four cats, and one dog named Max. I'm an independent author, my novels, Du More...
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