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The Butterfly Box [Mass Market Paperback]

Santa Montefiore
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (76 customer reviews)

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Book Description

7 Nov 2002

Federica Campione adores her father. No matter that Ramon, a distinguished traveller and writer, spends months away from their home on the exotic Chilean coast; as soon as he's back, his daughter has eyes for no one but him. When he gives her a magical box from Peru she believes he will always be there for her. Devastated when her parents' marriage falls apart, Federica is forced to set up home in Cornwall with her mother - the butterfly box is the only part of her beloved father she is able to take with her to sustain her during painful times. Embraced by the eccentric Appleby family, she loses her heart to their son Sam, who barely notices the little girl until it is too late.

As she grows to womanhood, Federica attempts to recapture that long-forgotten sense of security in the arms of the debonair Torquil Jensen. From the sanctuary of a seemingly perfect marriage, she embarks on a painful journey of self-discovery. It takes Federica years of heartbreak to escape her gilded cage and learn the true lesson of the butterfly box.

Product details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 576 pages
  • Publisher: Coronet; New edition edition (7 Nov 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 034076953X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0340769539
  • Product Dimensions: 17.8 x 11.2 x 4.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (76 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 282,533 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Santa Montefiore was born in England in 1970 on a beautiful farm in Hampshire. After Sherborne School for Girls she read Spanish and Italian at Exeter University. She spent much of the 90s in Buenos Aires. Her love for Argentina inspired her first four novels, but her American publisher wasn't interested in Argentina as a setting so she based her fifth novel in Italy - America came on board at that point but have not published her first four. Her novels take place in France, South Africa as well as Ireland and England and have been translated into over 25 languages and sold over 2 million copies worldwide. She has just completed her 14th title for 2014, The Beekeeper's Daughter. She lives in London with her husband, the historian Simon Sebag Montefiore, and their two children. Visit Santa's website at Follow her on twitter at santamontefiore.

Product Description

Amazon Review

Santa Montefiore's involving and dramatic novel The Butterfly Box opens in Vina del Mar, Chile, in the sweltering summer of 1982. Frederica is six years old and adores her father Ramon. He is a charismatic, good-looking adventurer who is due home after a long sojourn abroad. Frederica struggles to contain her excitement. Her mother, Helena, travelled with the glamorous Ramon Campione in the heady early days of their relationship; Ramon, a writer and photographer, travels the world and has sacrificed his family for his work. Over the years of growing disillusionment with their relationship, Helena endures his long absences waiting with the children in Chile. On his return, Ramon brings Frederica a gift: a magical box containing coruscating crystals in the form of a beautiful butterfly. According to legend, the butterfly once belonged to an Inca princess. Helena abandons her husband and returns to Cornwall with the children, and the Butterfly Box is now Frederica's sole connection with her past and her father. In Cornwall, Frederica grows up and falls in love with Sam Appleby and, later, the saturnine and charming Torquil Jensen. The lacerating relationship that follows forces her into a punishing voyage of self-discovery during which she learns the true lesson of the Butterfly Box.

Her first novel Meet Me Under the Ombu Tree established Santa Montefiore as a writer of elegance and craftsmanship working within the popular form of the romantic novel. So many novels in the genre are written in leaden-footed prose that it's a genuine revelation to find a writer as gifted as this. The Butterfly Box is couched in language that is always affecting, always truthful--even when saga conventions kick in. Few tales of love and loss exert such an emotional pull as this one. --Barry Forshaw --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


Absorbing. (Vogue)

Thoroughly readable . . . with old-fashioned romance (Evening Standard)

Refreshing . . . imagination, charm and delicacy. Santa is the new Rosamunde Pilcher. Delightfully written. (Daily Mail)

[An] escapist, passionate romance (Dorset Evening Echo)

This is a good, old-fashioned saga with all the classic ingredients. Federica has genuine pathos and charm, and those qualities permeate the whole book . . . engaging and charming. (Penny Vincenzi, Mail on Sunday)

a kaleidoscope of eccentric, vibrant characters (Tara Palmer-Tomkinson, Sunday Independent)

A story told across continents, with grand themes and strong emotions. (Yorkshire Evening Post)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great escapism 25 Jun 2006
By Jayaw
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is a lovely book to bury yourself in amid the graphic descriptions of Chile and Cornwall. It is a lovely story of families and the way they interact, also clearly showing that every one of us has faults which affect the way we treat others.
Santa does have a habit of using ridiculous names for her characters, but if you treat these ideas as harmless fun, you will enjoy the book. The ending had tears running down my cheeks.
I have also read and enjoyed The Last Voyage of the Valentina and Meet me Under the Ombu Tree, but this is my favourite book by Santa so far.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A delicious read, gourmet food for the soul. 18 Mar 2002
By A Customer
This book was pure escapism, you could feel the heat of South America and see the cliffs of Cornwall.
Santa Montefiore gives you a chance to look at all the characters so you can better understand what each one is going through.
She certainly knows how to make you laugh and cry aswell as keeping you hooked until there are no more pages left to turn.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Santa Montefiore does it again. 5 April 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I am rarely disappointed by her lovely, sensitive writing, which draws you into the characters, plot and scenes so well.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic read 10 Mar 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Another brilliant story , with characters that draw you into their world. A real page turner I didn't want to end.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Holiday treasure 27 Feb 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Wonderful read. Lose yourself in the characters and the surroundings and be transported as if you are there with the characters. Santa Montefiore does not disappoint.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars "The Butterfly Box" - Santa Montefiore 25 Aug 2009
This is the second Santa Montefiore book I've read and I thoroughly enjoyed it! I definately preferred it to "Sea of Lost Love" which sadly had a very slow start to it. Yet "The Butterfly Box" was, I felt, a vast improvement! The whole story and central character centred very much to my own life experience and I felt the author certainly captured the sentiments and emotions beautifully alongside all the wonderful settings the story takes place in. The only thing I would say is that the ending was slightly disappointing... without giving too much away it suddenly just finished. Santa Montefiore unfolded the story and the characters in such great detail. So much so that I couldn't put the book down but just feel that she perhaps could have added an extra twist to maintain the reader's interest right till the end. All in all a great read and I would definately recommend it!
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars capturing the butterfly 22 Oct 2002
This book took up extensive space in my hand luggage, but was the ideal and perfect in-flight reading and I manage to read the majority of it on my flight to the States and my return flight home. It is a simple story about a girl and her love for her father. However, life is never that simple and relationships, feelings and thoughts about one person in our lives affect the relationships we have with others. This novel is no different. Love, terror, mistakes and love again are all encountered as the story moves and grows, and allows the reader to grow with it, understanding the characters, and growing themselves as they read. A great read
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My favourite author . 24 Mar 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Amazing booking , couldn't put it down although I didn't want to finish it !! My favourite author , have enjoyed every book of hers I have read so far .
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