2011 · June

Butterfly by Sonya Hartnett

“She is not a musical girl nor, intrinsically, a joyful girl; but the music of the four Swedes shook something awake inside her, and when she heard it she felt airborne and strong.”

Published: August 10, 2010

Publisher: Candlewick Press

Received: From Publisher in exchange for a review.

Blurb from Goodreads:

Plum Coyle is on the edge of adolescence. Her fourteenth birthday is approaching, when her old life and her old body will fall away, and she will become graceful, powerful, and at ease. The strength of the objects she stores in a briefcase under her bed —a crystal lamb, a yoyo, an antique watch, a coin —will make sure of it. Over the next couple of weeks, Plum’s life will change. Her beautiful neighbor Maureen will begin to show Plum how she might fly. The older brothers she adores will court catastrophe in worlds that she barely knows exist. And her friends, her worst enemies, will tease and test, smelling weakness. They will try to lead her on and take her down. BUTTERFLY is a gripping, disquieting, beautifully observed coming-of-age novel by an acclaimed author at the top of her form.

My Review:

This is a really hard review for me to write. I am not sure if it was the fact that the author is Australian or that the setting is in the 80’s. It took me awhile to read this book, I just could not get into it. I put it down a couple of times, but was determined to read til the end. I am glad that I did, the ending was great when the whole storyline comes together and the mysteries are all solved.

The characters were very interesting and that is the reason that I was drawn to finish the book. Plum is a perfect portrayal of a young teen just trying to make it in the world. She is trying to figure out where she fits in and whom she is. My favorite character would have to be Plum’s brother, Cyder. He was very layed back and seemed to be the brother that everyone went to for help. He was very trustworthy and would keep the siblings secrets.  Cyder also gave advice and did not get upset if they chose not to use it. He absolutely surprised me at the end, by being Plum’s savior.

I would recommend this book for an older teen/adult. There was no swearing, but a minor sexual situation that a younger reader may not understand. Also, the writer has written the book in a way that it can tend to be confusing.


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