NEW YORK CITY, 1992. At the American Academy of Classical Art, popular opinion has it that the school’s handsome and mysterious founder, Raphael Sinclair, is a vampire. It is a rumor Rafe does nothing to dispel.
Scholarship student Tessa Moss has long dreamed of the chance to study at Rafe’s Academy. But she is floundering amidst the ups and downs of a relationship with egotistical art star Lucian Swain.
Then, one of Tessa’s sketches catches Rafe’s attention: a drawing of a young woman in 1930s clothing who is covering the eyes of a child. The suitcase at her feet says Wizotsky. Sofia Wizotsky, the love of Rafe’s life, was lost during the Holocaust.
Or was she? Rafe suspects Tessa may be the key to discovering what really happened.
As Rafe finds excuses to interact with Tessa, they cannot deny their growing attraction to one another. It is an attraction forbidden by the Academy Board and disapproved of by anyone familiar with Rafe’s playboy reputation and Tessa’s softhearted innocence.
But Tessa senses the truth: despite his wealth, his women, and his townhouse filled with rare and beautiful treasures, Rafe is a haunted man…for reasons that have nothing to do with the rumors they whisper about him at school.
Intensely romantic and deeply moving, The Color of Light blends fact and fantasy in an unforgettable tale of art and passion, love and war, guilt and forgiveness, spanning the New York art scene, high-fashion magazine publishing, the glittering café society of pre-World War II Paris, and the evil stalking the back roads of Nazi-occupied Europe.
Originally, when Helen Maryles Shankman moved to New York, she thought she wanted to be an illustrator, to tell stories with paint. A few years later, she discovered that what she really wanted to do was paint with words.
Her stories appear in The Kenyon Review, Cream City Review, Gargoyle, Grift, Danse Macabre, and JewishFiction.net. She was a finalist in Glimmer Train’s Short Story Award for New Writers and has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize.
For now she lives in New Jersey, with her husband, four kids, and a blue-eyed Australian Shepherd named Sky.
Her debut novel, The Color of Light, is coming from Stony Creek Press on Halloween, 2013.
Follow Helen on Twitter @hmshankman
Visit Helen’s blog at helenmarylesshankman.com.
Helen Maryles Shankman’s TLC Book Tours TOUR STOPS:
Thursday, October 31st: Man of La Book
Monday, November 4th: Must Read Faster
Monday, November 4th: Shelf Pleasure – author guest post
Wednesday, November 6th: Books Without Any Pictures
Thursday, November 7th: Bookish Whimsy
Monday, November 11th: Svetlana’s Reads and Views
Tuesday, November 12th: Ageless Pages
Wednesday, November 13th: Conceptual Reception
Thursday, November 14th: Great Imaginations
Friday, November 15th: Book-alicious Mama
Tuesday, November 19th: A Fantastical Librarian
Monday, November 25th: Sara’s Organized Chaos
Tuesday, November 26th: From the TBR Pile
Saturday, December 14th: My Bookshelf