Butterfly Summer

Amazing News…Butterfly Summer has won the Oxfordshire Book Awards 2013 – best book in the secondary schools category!

Butterfly Summer is the story of Becky, who moves with her mum back to her tiny home village, where old family secrets start to resurface. Becky seeks refuge in the beautiful local butterfly gardens, where she becomes friends with the impulsive Rosa May.

It’s a story about obsessive friendship and dark family secrets. A mesmerizing story that builds to a shocking conclusion.

Some secrets last a lifetime. When Becky and her mum move to the tiny village of Oakbridge, Mum is hoping for a new beginning. But when Becky discovers an old photo of her mum in hospital clutching a baby, twelve years before Becky was born, Becky becomes haunted by the thought that her mum is keeping something from her. Stifled by her mum’s over-protectiveness and depressive moods, Becky feels more alone than ever. The only place she finds comfort is at the beautiful local Butterfly Garden with her new friend, the wild-spirited and impulsive Rosa May. But Becky can’t shake off the unanswered questions. Why can’t she swim? Where is her dad? Who is the baby in the photo? And why is her mum lying to her? As the two girls spend more time together however, Rosa May’s unpredictable temper and possessive streak suggests that she is hiding something as well…and in the heat of the sun-drenched summer, it seems that Becky is the only one in the dark.

REVIEWS

Conway drops clues deftly into the water with hardly a ripple — reread this gently nostalgic mystery and you will be astonished at what you missed the first time. The Jewish Chronicle

This is a book that you finish and want to read all over again… Anne-Marie Conway deftly keeps you away from the truth, dropping hints that have you wondering but don’t reveal too much. Books, bonnets and full-frontal blogging

A gripping story which catches the importance of friendship – even when there are dark, dark secrets. When Becky and her mum return to where her mum grew up she uncovers an old photo which reveals something about her family she has never known before. Mum’s too busy with her new job to ask but Becky finds a very special friend in the beautiful Butterfly Garden. There are secrets everywhere in this atmospheric story which is beautifully resolved. Love Reading 4 Kids

Like Conway’s Star Makers Club series, [Butterfly Summer} is really easy to read – she has a wonderful writing style which makes the book hard to put down and her prose captures the settings, especially the Butterfly Garden itself, vividly… A definite recommendation for a thrilling read. Ya Yeah Yeah blog

I was…completely swept up in the story from the first page. The setting is beautifully done, with the hot oppressive summer perfectly matching the tone of the story, and the butterfly garden itself embodying the relationship between Becky and Rosa May. The more serious themes, such as Becky’s mother’s depression, are dealt with sensitively but without sugar coating, and Rosa May’s changeable nature gave the story a real sense of danger and tension. It’s really not the story of light and happiness suggested by the title, but a much more weighty read that will give readers something to really think about. The Bookbag

Secrets and mysteries abound in Anne-Marie conway’s haunting novel, BUTTERFLY SUMMER. Becky and her mother have moved to a small village for a fresh start but when Becky finds an old photo of her mother with a baby, taken 12 years before Becky herself was born, questions need to be answered. Like just why is her mother so afraid of water? Perhaps Becky’s new friend Rosa May holds the answer. The Sunday Express

Becky is haunted – in every sense – by her family’s past, and especially by her father, whom her mother refuses to discuss with her. Who is the demanding girl in the butterfly garden on the edge of the village whom nobody sees except Becky? And what really happened to her father? Lovely characters include Mum’s supportive friend Stella, her common-sensible son Mack and Mr and Mrs Jackson who run the village shop. The Independent on Sunday

I would love to hear what you think?

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