Change is in the air for young mother Dellarobia Turnbow and her friends and family in the small Appalachian community where they eke out a living. Their impoverished settlement becomes the centre of world attention with the appearance of a seemingly miraculous natural phenomenon.
Both dazzling and alarming, this marvel is the catalyst for Dellarobia to question everything she has always known, as well as presenting an opportunity for the author's background as a scientist to come to the fore in a thought-provoking exploration of the complexities of climate change and the fragility of the natural world. [Big read, larger font]
Comments from Groups
We all enjoyed this book. The author's descriptive writing made the countryside and daily lives come alive. We liked the mixture of science and common sense. Little River 001
Despite enjoying other books by this author, we felt this was too long-winded. We mostly enjoyed the 'science' of the butterflies, rather than the plot. Ohope 006
A book that created a lot of discussion. Most of us enjoyed the book athough there was some disappointment with the ending. Auckland 105
Wonderful! Kingsolver at her best! Good discussion. Nelson 014
Two readers really loved the book and rated it highly. Others liked it but thought it too long. Provided a good discussion though. Wellington 008
Many loved Kingsolver's lyrical writing style but found her rather preachy and laboured. Plenty in here to learn and discuss! Auckland 063
Jolly good read. Makes you think. Christchurch 009
Lots of detailed discussion as the book covered multiple issues and the characters developed. Even though it was written over 10 years ago it was felt to still be very relevant - climate change, religion, the manipulation by media etc.
Only half the group managed to finish this book. Most who did felt that the butterfly migration was a 'device' to push the author's views on climate change. However, the description of life in mid west America was very raw and unsettling. The theme of 'hope' was well carried throughout the book and the description of the butterfly colony very interesting. The writing was very good, as expected from Barbara Kingsolver, but most of the group felt this novel was not as good as 'The Poisonwood Bible' or 'The Lacuna'.
One of the rare books this year to have won unanimous approval. Excellent use of language and well portrayed character description. Climate change issue a key feature as was the Monarch butterfly.
Thoroughly enjoyed by all.
We loved this book. A big read.
We all loved it.
On the whole our bookclub really enjoyed Barbara Kingsolver's book - a fictional story with lots of scientific information about monarch butterflies woven into it.
All appreciated the beautiful language and descriptions, but not many were gripped by the story initially.
Some felt the book could have been edited, and shorter. We enjoyed learning about butterfly behaviour; and the witty metaphors. The majority enjoyed Barbara Kingsolver's writing.
Most of us loved this book but some felt it lost its magic in the middle. The opening chapters were wonderfully written and most liked the ending.
A big read, enjoyed by all.
Interesting scientific facts and well written but most didn't finish it. Too long and the storyline wasn't strong enough to sustain interest.
This was our first book in the club and I'm sad to say only one of us liked it. I think most found it too far fetched!