"An interesting fantasy tale"
When Mira Fenn turned nine years old her mom Colette
disappeared and the preadolescent moved to Ohio to be
raised by foster parents there. Several decades later,
when her adoptive parents die, Mira finds the deed that
proves she owns the Las Vegas, New Mexico home that she
originally lived in. Having no excuse to rationalize
avoiding her past, Mira heads home to learn why Colette
vanished without a trace.
In Las Vegas, Mira feels at home in Phineas House with
mirrors everywhere especially in odd places. She learns
from the caretaker Domingo that the house has pleaded with
him to colorfully paint it over; Mira agrees that the
house needs vibrant pastorals. As they work in harmony
restoring Phineas House, Mira and Domingo begin to
understand the ancestral link between their families and
the intelligence of the edifice that whispers colors to
the artists. They also begin to learn what happened to
Colette and more about each other, but will a growing
fondness be enough to prevent family history from
This is an interesting fantasy tale in which the mundane
contains magic, depending on the color as varying shades
have differing charms. The middle aged Mira is a solid
protagonist while Domingo serves as a fine balance to her
whose acceptance of magic is in her genetic make up to do
so. The story line contains complex concepts of reality;
however, too much remains unresolved so that the audience
at the end of the day will feel blue having to wait for an
Reviewed by Harriet Klausner
Posted July 13, 2005
Reviewed by PNR Group Member
Posted January 25, 2007
Middle-aged Mira Fenn knows she has an uncomfortably exotic past. As a small girl, she lived in a ornate old house in tiny Las Vegas, New Mexico, tended by oddly silent servant women and ruled by her coldly flamboyant mother Colette. When Mira was nine, Colette went on one of her unexplained trips, only this time she never returned.
Placed with foster parents, Mira was raised in Ohio, normal save for her passion for color. On gaining adulthood, she learned that she still owned the New Mexico house. She also learned that, as a condition of being allowed to adopt her, Mira's foster parents had agreed to change their name, move to another state, and never ask why.
Years later, going through family papers after the deaths of her elderly foster parents, Mira finds documents that pique her curiosity about her vanished mother and the reasons behind her strange childhood and adoption.
Travelling back to New Mexico, she finds the house is and isn't as she remembers it. Inside, it's much the same. Outside, it's been painted in innumerable colors. As Mira continues to investigate her mother's life, events take stranger and stranger turns. The silent women reappear. Even as Mira begins to suspect the power to which she may be heir, the house itself appears to be waking up...