Author: Kate Ellison
Reading Level: Young Adult
Publisher: Egmont USA
e-ARC, 325 pages
Date Published: February 14, 2012
Description (Taken from Goodreads):
Penelope (Lo) Marin has always loved to collect beautiful things. Her dad's consulting job means she's grown up moving from one rundown city to the next, and she's learned to cope by collecting (sometimes even stealing) quirky trinkets and souvenirs in each new place--possessions that allow her to feel at least some semblance of home.
But in the year since her brother Oren's death, Lo's hoarding has blossomed into a full-blown, potentially dangerous obsession. She discovers a beautiful, antique butterfly pendant during a routine scour at a weekend flea market, and recognizes it as having been stolen from the home of a recently murdered girl known only as "Sapphire"--a girl just a few years older than Lo. As usual when Lo begins to obsess over something, she can't get the murder out of her mind.
As she attempts to piece together the mysterious "butterfly clues," with the unlikely help of a street artist named Flynt, Lo quickly finds herself caught up in a seedy, violent underworld much closer to home than she ever imagined--a world, she'll ultimately discover, that could hold the key to her brother's tragic death.
As strong as the story starts off, it does lag quite a bit in the middle. Lo’s habits and urges are interesting enough at first, but I could only take so much tap tap tap, banana-ing. And she does it a lot. And that’s exactly how OCD works – Lo’s debilitating urges are spot on, but when they’re written in a book, they can be too much. I felt like I could never get down to who Lo was and connect with her because all we see are her urges and desire to be someone else. Lo’s OCD took the focus away from the murder and away from the dingy, scary Neverland of Cleveland and the beauty of the sweet boy Flynt.
Parts of the story are also a bit predictable; which didn’t really bother me. For all the parts that were predictable, there were ten other ones that caught me off guard. And even though The Butterfly Clues lags some in the middle, the last third of the book takes off like a rocket. Once Lo starts putting the puzzle pieces together, this complex mystery starts to unravel.
The Butterfly Clues is a mystery novel at its heart. It has a dash of love drama, a handful of family issues, and a whole lot of investigating. It had so much potential to be incredible, but was only just okay for me. I can see many others (and know a good handful of people) loving it though and it is certainly worth checking out.
Opening line: I spot her out of the corner of my eye and freeze. ~ pg. 1
Now you know what curiosity did.
Be careful, or you’ll end up like the cat. ~ pg. 79
*This is the e-ARC version and lines, pages, cover art may differ from final copy
2.5*This review is my honest opinion and I received no monetary compensation from it.
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