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The Language of Light: A Novel [Kindle Edition]

Meg Waite Clayton
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $15.00
Kindle Price: $9.99
You Save: $5.01 (33%)
Sold by: Random House LLC

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Book Description


Nelly Grace is starting over. With her two young sons, Nelly has fled to the simple stone house built by her great-grandfather in the moneyed horse country of Maryland in order to escape the grief of her husband’s death—and perhaps find a way back to her first love: photography. Easing her transition into this strange, mannered world is Emma Crofton, the grand matriarch of the foxhunting community, and Emma’s son, Dac, a handsome yet distant horse trainer. As Nelly slowly makes her way back to the camera, she must come to terms with her troubled relationship with her father, a photojournalist who chose fame over family. But when she finally sees him again, Nelly’s fragile new beginning is threatened by revelations of a secret past, and the fears that kept it hidden.

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From the Trade Paperback edition.

Editorial Reviews


“Will delight readers searching for a story with meaning, character, and drama.”—Bookreporter

"Richly atmospheric, gorgeously written, and filled with characters so real they breathe on the luminous as a perfect photograph shimmering with true light."—Caroline Leavitt, author of Girls In Trouble and Pictures of You

“An engaging and compassionate portrait of an artist learning to embrace the full potential of her power. Meg Waite Clayton writes with a photographer’s precision, clarity, and care.”—A. Manette Ansay, author of Good Things I Wish You
“The Language of Light
shines on, a wonderfully knowing action photograph that has emerged from the darkroom as words.”—Baltimore Sun

From the Trade Paperback edition.

About the Author

Meg Waite Clayton lived for several years on a horse farm in northern Maryland. She now lives in Palo Alto and Santa Barbara with her husband and two young sons. She is a University of Michigan Law School graduate, and her stories have appeared in The Virginia Quarterly Review, The Literary Review, and elsewhere. The Language of Light, a finalist for the 2002 Bellwether Prize, is her first novel.

Product Details

  • File Size: 570 KB
  • Print Length: 354 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0345526643
  • Publisher: Ballantine Books (June 28, 2011)
  • Sold by: Random House LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004J4WKZG
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #285,459 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars As subtle as its title November 7, 2003
I went into this one thinking I would like it, and came out the other end in a state that closely resembled purring. It has a light, lovely feel to it, with a sense of things that matter, delicately drawn.
Written with a sure hand, both language and milieu.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Woman's Journey to Artistic Expression November 30, 2003
The Language of Light takes us into the world of a widowed mother and aspiring photojournalist in her struggle to answer the disparate callings of parenthood, love, and devotion to her art. Nelly Grace's relationship with her deceased husband haunts her. She loved him deeply, but he seemed to dismiss her photography as merely a hobby. Nelly wrestles with guilt over her passion to pursue her creative impetus. Her children need her. If she follows the calling of the photographer's voice within her, will she follow in the footsteps of her too often absent father? What would allowing herself to become involved with the charming and enigmatic Dac Crofton mean to her art and her life? The Language of Light frames the universal question of self-expression in a tender and compelling narrative about one woman's journey. Finally, it is to herself-a self she is only beginning to know-that Nelly is true.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Compelling, comfortable, mastery of writing April 21, 2008
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I read this book when it first came out, and recently found myself picking it up again. I can not say enough wonderful comments about this reading experience. The writing style has you believeing you are sitting there, experiencing life as in the writing, experiencing the rain drops on the windshield, compelling and really did not want the story to end. This is a MUST read.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Haunting and beautifully written December 4, 2003
A novel about what it means to find yourself as an artist, as a mother and as a daughter. Nelly's struggles to define herself in the rambling horse country of Maryland (and through photography) were as riveting and as luminous as a photograph shot through with light. I didn't want the novel to end, and found myself reading slower and slower as I approached the final pages. Wonderful!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars intrigued by the title --- loved the book August 7, 2008
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
What a journey into one woman's life--her heart, her soul, her desires, her loves, her confusions and her resolutions. I feel as though I have been on a vacation from my life, by stepping directly into Nell Grace's world. Clayton's writing is so genuine and descriptive. I felt for all her characters within the pages of "The Language of Light." I was touched and I thank Meg Clayton for writing so descriptively about human internal beliefs, intuitions, rights of passage, self expression, and friendship. I walk away with a deeper understanding that to find fulfilling meaning in our lives we must first believe in ourselves.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A very nice "lunch" read!! December 29, 2011
I picked this book up randomly at one of the closing Border's bookstores. I was drawn to it because it contained 2 of my most favorite things: photography & horses. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book during my lunch hours (when I read the most). I liked what one reviewer said: it had a nice light, loving feeling to it. The struggle that Nelly endured to move forward in her life with childhood passions while trying to make sense of her past with her late husband and her father is real and palpable. Well written and touched the heart and soul.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautifully written and thought provoking November 16, 2003
By A Customer
A beautifully written, heartwarming story of a young woman coming into her own. At its core, this novel is a thought-provoking exploration of the ways we love one another--daughters and fathers, mothers and sons, husbands and wives--and the misunderstandings, misssteps, and intrigues that can result.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Book touched my soul January 28, 2010
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
There are many books out there describing the relationships of women with common interests (knitting, quilting, writing) or common life experiences. The author's Wednesday Sisters is one of those. The Language of Light focuses on the relationship of a younger, thirty something, woman and her children with an older,seventh something, woman. As the friendship develops you are aware of the age difference, but it doesn't seem to matter to how the characters interact. Meg Waite Clayton adds a bit of mystery and at the end leaves you to your own conclusions regarding the situation.

As a seventy something woman, I have a few friends that are much younger. These women enrich my life, keep me current in this fast changing world, and we often exchange advice. I treasure their friendships.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars True to life
A riveting story of family ties, disconnects, and forgiveness. I am sure that most readers will identify with one or another character in this novel with a sense of nostalgia. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Linda Newton
5.0 out of 5 stars Seeing past our own blindness
Wonderful analogy of friendships, love and how we conceal our emotions and communications. This book is not your average romance with the happy ending. Read more
Published 12 months ago by S. Sarabasha
5.0 out of 5 stars Photography buffs wanted!
Enjoyment is looking at life through a lens! Ms. Clayton has captured the essence of this preoccupation for many as well as having woven love for the pastime into a captivating... Read more
Published 16 months ago by Scout
3.0 out of 5 stars If you like to feel bad
This was a beautifully written book, no doubt. And the story was compelling. But boy was it depressing! Read more
Published on August 19, 2012 by sj faux
3.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing ending
I love the way Meg Waite Clayton writes. I thoroughly enjoyed this book until ending, which came abruptly and left many questions unanswered. Read more
Published on August 18, 2012 by Cheryl Joy
5.0 out of 5 stars breathtaking
This book evokes so much, it is hard to describe. I read it twice. I want to live in Maryland now;)
Published on January 19, 2010 by J. HERRON
4.0 out of 5 stars A very pleasant read.
I enjoyed this book very much. There were countless moments I had to scratch down little quotations from it here or there. Ms. Read more
Published on July 2, 2007 by Marissa JoAnne Phillips
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More About the Author

Meg Waite Clayton is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of five novels, including the forthcoming THE RACE FOR PARIS (August 2015), THE WEDNESDAY DAUGHTERS, THE WEDNESDAY SISTERS, THE FOUR MS. BRADWELLS, the Bellwether Prize finalist THE LANGUAGE OF LIGHT. Her books have been translated into languages from German to Lithuanian to Chinese. She's written for The Los Angeles Times, the New York Times, the Washington Post, The San Jose Mercury News, The Miami Herald, Writer's Digest, Runner's World, and public radio, and for The New York Times and Forbes online. A graduate of the University Michigan and its law school, she lives in Palo Alto, California.;; @megwclayton

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