Book reviews of YA lit and more

As a middle school librarian and hopeful reader of Missouri's high school award books (Gateway nominees), I am reading and reviewing as many young adult and middle grade novels as I can while working on my own writing for this age group.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

The Butterfly Clues- Kate Ellison

Penelope is troubled.  Her brother is gone, her parents are basically checked out of life in general, and she is having a hard time controlling her "urges".  Urges to steal things, urges to tap, bow, say certain words, and always in 3's, 6's or 9's.  She spends most of her time outside of school wandering and finds herself in "Neverland", the run-down part of town, and she overhears a murder.  'Lo becomes obsessed with solving the mystery of this murder.  The murder of Sapphire, a 19 year old dancer in a club called The Tens.  It is in following leads on the murder that she meets Flynt.  Finally someone who gets her and all her quirks, yet who he really?  She finds herself falling in love with Flynt, yet holding back as she tries to understand who Bird is in Sapphire's journals, the truth behind her brother's death, and unwind the web that left Sapphire dead.

I couldn't help but love Penelope as a character.  She is so flawed, yet so real.  The murder mystery is very suspenseful, but I think the character development is what makes the book outstanding.  I hope this author has many more books to come.  

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