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The Butterfly House Paperback – 1 Aug 2006

4.5 out of 5 stars 26 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 313 pages
  • Publisher: Mira Books; Reprint edition (Aug. 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0778322173
  • ISBN-13: 978-0778322177
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 2.2 x 20.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,263,982 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

About the Author

Marcia Preston grew up on a wheat farm in central Oklahoma, and her first two books were mysteries in an Oklahoma setting. She was awarded the 2004 Mary Higgins Clark Award for suspense fiction, and the 2004 Oklahoma Book Award. Her most recent books are general fiction. Before writing novels full time, Marcia taught high school English and was a freelance writer for a long list of national magazines. She also published and edited a specialty magazine for writers.

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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
"The Butterfly House" is a delicately written, enthralling book, and its occasional small downfall does not hide the originality and beauty of the story and writing.

Roberta Dutreau grows up with an alcoholic mother, but her friendship with Cynthia and Cynthia's mother ensures that she is not without love and affection. However the intricacy of the relationships, the insecurities of the women and Roberta's sudden exposure to her father and his past sets the stage for an ultimately tragic result. Years later, the sudden reappearance of Cynthia's father means that all three have to examine what really happened on a night which affected them all forever.

Preston's characterisation is good, and she also spends time on the minor characters which ensures the story 'breathes' and the reader believes in it. A few small details (any more news of Roberta's father, for example?) are missed out but these don't detract from the power of the story. Mother/daughter relationships, as well as friendships, are well examined and each character is well-written so there isn't really one you dislike, or can't feel some empathy with. Roberta's relationship with her husband is in particular perfectly written, and there are no saccharine or false notes in Preston's gentle observation: these characters are human, and the reader aches for them.

"The Butterfly House" isn't perfect - the denouement towards the end of the book is a little rushed and I'm not sure I believe that such a judgement would be made in court - but it is a very good read and I look forward to more of Preston's work appearing on my bookshelf very soon.
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By Lizzie VINE VOICE on 27 Aug. 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I had never heard of either Marcia Preston or 'The Butterfly House.' I chanced upon it while browsing Amazon's listmania. I was frustrated because I seem to have read a few lemons lately and was desperate for a good read.

What a wonderful piece of storytelling! Within a few pages I was caught up in the story of these four compelling women.

It is a story of love, yet not in the conventional sense of the word, jealously, forgiveness, friendship, and much, much more. I rooted for all of these richly drawn characters from the start, and finished the novel with a tear in my eye, sorry to leave them all behind. I don't really want to go into details of the plot, Amazon's synopsis will tell you all you need to know, but if you're looking for a good read, and not sure what you want, go ahead and buy it. You'll NOT be disappointed.

This book has restored my belief that there are good books out there and I will be looking up other titles by this talented author.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Living at home with an alcoholic mother is hard for Roberta, thankfully she has her best friend Cynthia. Both girls have a special bond, the fact that they have grown up without a father figure.Finding it hard at times to cope at home Roberta takes solace at Cynthia's house where she spends many hours with both her friend and her mother Lenora who treats her like her own daughter.
However a tragedy strikes which changes all their lives,and ten years later it is up to Roberta to set the record straight.
An enjoyable read with interesting characters and an excellent insight pertaining to friendship, love and loyalty.
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Format: Paperback
Haunted by her difficult childhood, Roberta Dutreau is trying to put the past behind her. Then a familiar face appears, forcing Roberta to embark on a life changing journey and discover the truth about her mother.

I loved the way this book switches between telling the story of Roberta's childhood years and the present day.

This is a beautiful, although sometimes sinister, novel which focuses on mother-daughter relationships, friendships and self discovery.

Cleverly written it is the perfect book for anyone who likes to be able to build their own image of each character throughout the story.
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By Brida TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 27 Aug. 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I finished this book a week or so ago, and since that week has passed my feelings about the book have changed slightly. When I first finished the book, I wasn't sure what I was going to take from it. However, now that I have thought about the book, I think it has left a bigger impact on me than I originally thought it would.

The story is about two young girls, Roberta and Cynthia, and their respective mothers, Ruth and Lenora. Both girls do not have their fathers in their lives. As Roberta and Cynthia (or Cincy, as she is called by Roberta) grow, so does their freindship. As Roberta's mum is an alcoholic, the girls spend much of their time at cincy's house. Both girls share a close relatinship with Cincy's mum, Lenora. However, as they develop into adolescents, the girls' friendship begins to become strained. Although they share similarities, they also have their differences; in a sense it is these differences which begin to tear their relationship apart. In the end, it is one fateful day which changes all of their lives forever - a day which affects even the future of those involved.

Reflecting on this book, I think it says a lot about what it is to be human - how hard it can be for young people trying to find their place in the world, especially if they have a difficult home life. I thought the way Preston used butterflies as a metaphor for Roberta and her struggle with herself was quite beautiful. Preston also shows how insecure jealousies can easily turn into betrayal - even between those who are meant to love each other.

A recommended book.
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