Monday, May 9, 2011

The Butterfly's Daughter by Mary Alice Monroe

The Butterfly's Daughter
The Butterfly's Daughter by Mary Alice Monroe

The blurb:
The legend of las mariposas - the beautiful monarch butterflies that every year fly more than 2,000 miles on fragile wings to to return to their winter home in Mexico - in Luz Avila's birthright.  She learned of their ways and their mystical powers from the grandmother who was the only family that she knew.  Now it is her turn, like the butterflies, to make that long, perilous journey.  In order to honor the promise to her beloved abuela, Luz must return to her grandmother's ashes to her ancestral village in the mountains of Mexico.  But while this ofrenda, a tradition so old its origins lost in the mists of time, will mean leaving behind a man who loves Luz deeply, the journey promises to bring deep spiritual meaning to the life of a woman who cannot find her way into the future until she comes to terms with the past.

As Luz slowly makes her way south from blustery Milwaukee in a VW Bug so ancient it as no business on the highway, a series of seemingly random encounters touches her life: a desperate mother-to-be, even younger than her, fleeing an abusive lover.  An anywhere-the-wind-blows free spirit.  A lonely career woman who is determined to live, really live, for the first time.  It is in San Antonio, however, that a truly startling revelation awaits Luz: a reunion with a shadowy figure from her childhood.

Together, they cross the border into Mexico, but they also must somehow cross the border that separates past from present, bitterness from love, and truth from lies.  They will honor the memory of another beloved woman by standing in the Sacred Circle to witness the spectacular, glittering river of orange monarchs descend from the sky to return home.  If they can share in this age-old ritual, perhaps they will be able to find their way back to love, and take their place in the enduring circle of life.

Mary Alice Monroe's latest novel, The Butterfly's Daughter, is a book about friendship, family and self-discovery.  Luz is determined to fulfill her promise to go  to her grandmother's village in Mexico to see the place where the monarch butterflies journey every year.  This task is a pilgrimage for Luz and it's a final tribute to the woman who raised her.  As Luz encounters problems on her way to Mexico, she handles them best she can.  Her openness and generosity lead to unexpected friendships. 
While the interaction between Luz her new friends is heartwarming, Luz's complex relationship with her mother gives the book an added complexity.

The Butterfly's Daughter is a heartwarming women's novel.

ISBN-10: 1439170614 - Hardcover $25.00
Publisher: Gallery (May 3, 2011), 400 pages.
Review copy provided by the publisher.

About the Author:
Mary Alice Monroe is the New York Times bestselling author of Last Light over Carolina and Time is a River as well as many other acclaimed novels.  She received the 2008 Award for Writing from the South Carolina Center for the Book.   An active conservationist, she lives in the low country of South Carolina, where she is at work on her next novel.  Learn more about here at

1 comment:

  1. I received a copy of this through Goodreads and hope to get to it soon. It sounds like it will be a good read.