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Saturday, March 14, 2015

Breaking Butterflies by M. Anjelais

Bookcase 15's Breaking Butterflies is a well written book, and it shows great promise for a young writer, but I didn't like it. It's about two girls who plan their lives at the age of eight and this plan comes true. The story then fastforwards to the present day and the narrative switches to their offspring (one from each mother), now teenagers, which the plan ordained would be born. Something happens, which I won't reveal, which throws the plan into disarray and the rest of the book is about the struggle to break away from the plan.

The whole basis of the book is of course this plan based upon a conversation between two young children along the lines of "what shall I do when I grow up". From that point on the lives of the characters are pre-ordained until the next generation by this childish game, which of course is absurd. But then it's basically a Magic Realism book, so the normal rules of life do not quite apply.

The major theme of the book I suppose is living with someone with mental illness and how it affects the people around you. Had that been wrapped in a more realistic plot and around characters who weren't bound by a made up "plan", then I might have found it more absorbing. As it was the book, even though relatively short, I only give 4 out of 10, but I expect more of this author in years to come.

The Teenage section is now complete. All in all though the quality of the three books was good. I was expecting simple stories set in schools and revolving around "first love" relationships. None of the books were like that at all. The Piper was a fairly basic supernatural tale, but the other two explored real life issues and were essentially adult books with teenage characters.

Bookcase 16 is for "graphic novels", a euphemism in my eyes for comics. I must admit I hate comics, I hate cartoons, especially on American themes like Batman and Superman (which seemed hackneyed even was I was young). However I did manage to find a book in this case that looked a bit different with no suggestion of superhero characters.

Murder Me Dead promises to a tale of "love and murder", which doesn't rule much out as most books I have read so far have been about one of the other! I'll be surprised if it gets much more than 1 out of 10 though!

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