The Colour of the Sun

Non-Fiction - Memoir
254 Pages
Reviewed on 01/27/2021
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Author Biography

Gillian Thorp currently lives between homes in the San Francisco Bay Area and east of the Sierra Nevada with her two daughters, Kiara and Nicki and a mutt named Taz. Born Gillian August, she earned a Bachelors degree in Psychology from the University of Nevada, Reno and her Masters in Counseling from Santa Clara University. Her educational background has given her a deep understanding of the human psyche and a broad base from which to approach many topics. In 2001 she began working at Santa Clara University as Director, International Student Services and served in this role for over a decade. During that time, she wrote many college papers, business plans, departmental newsletters, and copious student materials. Writing a book has been on her bucket list for many years, and eventually with The Colour of the Sun, it became a reality. Thorp has long had a love for books and appreciates the profound impression stories leave on her and others. The Colour of the Sun did not develop until after my husband, NFL player, Deron Thorp unexpectedly passed away in 2006. Thorp has a deep curiosity for life and considers herself a lover of all things human. These days, when she is not reading or writing she can be found gardening, singing badly (Thorp loves music), raising her daughters to be women, and volunteering for various causes, particularly as it relates to women and children issues.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Joel R. Dennstedt for Readers' Favorite

In the beginning of Gillian Thorp’s intensely personal and moving memoir, The Colour of the Sun, an early reader remarks: “… there are some stories that don’t just stick with you; they become a part of you.” I quote this observation because it’s true. Sometimes, one comes across an exquisite piece of writing that inhabits one’s own being with the wisdom, experience, compassion, and transformative, cleansing tears of another. One does not simply imbibe a journal of distant recollections. Instead, we are privileged to share the vivid intimacy and higher meaning more often meant for the individual alone. Only great courage and generosity from an author allows this deeper thing to happen.

When the author writes as beautifully as Gillian Thorp in The Colour of the Sun, magic happens. Her story begins in South Africa, and her indelible opening sentence should become a classic of the genre: “I was born among thieves.” In addition, Ms. Thorp employs an irresistible style for telling her life story. First, she speaks as an observer of her time and place with unrelenting, gorgeous prose on which the smitten reader simply wants to float. Then, like a spirit come to earth, she inhabits uniquely defining moments with her unresisting, lucid presence. Just so, the reader is invited to share both her objective observations and her vivid memories. You will not be left unscarred. You will not be left unchanged. This book will indeed become a part of you. Even the trail of tears you walk on at the end will become a part of your path, too.

Lionel Pieterse

Born and raised in South Africa I really enjoyed reading this book. I could not put it down. I loved how Gillian breaks it down from City to City as she traveled on her journey. Reminded me of where I am from and puts into words many of my thoughts growing up in a township during Apartheid as a black person. You survived and your story is an inspiration to me and especially my daughters. Thanks Gillian for sharing your story, but also sharing our story. I recommended the book to my family and friends.


Congratulations on this fabulous recognition!