The Butterfly Girl

The Butterfly Girl

A Novel

Book - 2019
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A year ago, Naomi made a promise that she would not take another case until she finds the younger sister who has been missing for years. The search takes her to Portland, Oregon, where scores of homeless children wander the streets like ghosts. Naomi is unable to resist the pull of children in need - and the fear she sees in the eyes of a twelve-year old girl named Celia. As danger creeps closer, Naomi and Celia find echoes of themselves in one another, forcing them each to consider the question: can you still be lost even when you've been found? But will they find the answer too late?
Publisher: New York, New York : Harper, an imprint of HarperCollinsPublishers, ©2019.
ISBN: 9780062955104
Characteristics: 264 pages :, ;,21 cm.


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JCLAshleyW Apr 21, 2020

Rene Denfeld takes gut-wrenching topics (child homelessness, human trafficking, and sexual assault) and writes stories that are relevant, honest, and heartbreaking, without being graphic or salacious. From the author's firsthand experience as a homeless teen and work with Portland's (OR) teen transient population comes a work of fiction that allows readers to experience these tragedies through the safety of fiction. Highly recommend beginning with "The Child Finder" before reading this book.

Jan 25, 2020

Rene Denfield grabs your mind and heart from the first page and doesn't let go. This is the second novel of hers that I've read and I'm looking forward to more. Her stories stay with you long after they end.

Nov 03, 2019

"The Child Finder" was one of my favorite reads of 2018, so naturally I was thrilled to discover there would be a second book. I was not disappointed.

I plowed through this book in just two sittings. It's a book of hope for those trapped in seemingly hopeless situations. It's about finding the one spark of light when you are surrounded by darkness. About the stories we tell ourselves when our reality is far different from those around us.

Naomi isn't a perfect character. She is strong, but also has weaknesses. She's working through her own stuff while trying to help those who have no one else to fight for them. She is determined to find those who may be otherwise forgotten because she knows what it is to be part of a broken system. To have survived. To have moved through the challenges and not come out unscathed. I think that's what I love about her. Yes, she is a successful investigator. But that doesn't erase her past. Nor does it mean everything gets tied up with a tidy little bow.

Oct 25, 2019

Stars: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Absolutely brilliant!

PLOT SUMMARY: Naomi, the child finder, is back. This time she is on a mission to find her sister, who has been missing for almost 20 years, ever since Naomi escaped from imprisonment as a child and promised to go back for her. Well, she’s still trying.

Alongside this difficult investigation, is Celia, a street kid who has had so many terrible breaks it’s hard to imagine she’s still standing. During the course of Naomi’s quest to find her sister, Celia and her imaginary butterflies prove to Naomi that hope is never lost and caring for others is why we are on this earth.

PROS: Is there an author you read that seems to speak directly to you? Where you love every sentence they write and just wish there were more of them? Rene Denfeld is that author for me... Sometimes I will read a line several times, marvelling at its’ beauty and profoundness. Her gorgeous prose contrasts with the stark brutality of her subject matter and the end result is truly amazing. Have I raved enough???

CONS: What I’m most afraid of is that I don’t have the words to express just how special, how heartbreaking, how hopeful this book really is. It is incredibly difficult subject matter to read about, so please be aware of that.

YES or NO: Oh my goodness - it’s a YES!!! It’s important, it’s sad, it’s horrifying, it’s beautiful, it’s full of love. If you’re at all interested, don’t start with this one, The Child Finder is the first in this series and I would highly recommend reading it first!

5 Stars

STPL_JessH Oct 12, 2019

Book 2 of an excellent series always has a difficult task: to try and live up to the high standards set by book 1. In this case, The Butterfly Girl comes quite close. While I didn't love it as much as I loved Child Finder, I have to say that I was still impressed by the writing. I admire the way Denfeld writes very harsh and heartbreaking truths carefully, and with great sensitivity. I also appreciate the way her stories unfold. It is almost as though she takes the reader by the hand and says, "come, be a witness to this story. Be prepared, it will be difficult. It is more than worth hearing." Denfeld never glorifies trauma or includes gratuitous descriptions of violence. Instead, she is true to the experiences her characters endure while offering hope amidst dismal circumstances. I highly recommend her books!

Oct 01, 2019

Loved this book! I couldn't put it down. The author makes the world of homeless children so real and so vivid and so heartbreakingly poignant. Rene Denfeld is an author that you should have on your radar.

debwalker Sep 30, 2019

When you're searching for the sister you left behind when you escaped the clutches of your childhood kidnapper.....

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