Butterfly, written by one of Australia’s leading young adult authors, Sonya Harnett, and admirably performed with undertones of sad longing by Rebecca Macauley, is the coming-of-age story about 14-year-old Plum Coyle, a shy and tentative girl who desperately wants to be liked and fit in with the other neighborhood girls.
It is the new friendship Plum starts with Maureen, a wife and mother who Plum reveres, and whose own intentions are less than noble, that truly changes Plum’s life and outlook forever.
A poignant, often heartbreaking tale about growing up.
Here is a gripping, chilling, beautifully observed tale of what a teenage girl will do to keep her friends, by one of Australia's finest writers. Growing up during the 1980s in the safe complacency of the Australian suburbs, Plum Coyle should be happy. But on the cusp of her 14th birthday - and on the fringe of her peer group - she lives in terror of the disapproval of her cruel and fickle girlfriends and, most of all, she hates her awkward, changing body with a passion.So when Plum's glamorous next-door neighbour, Maureen, a young wife and mother, befriends Plum, Plum responds with worshipful fervour. Plum feels herself reinvented. With Maureen, she becomes the girl she's always wanted to be. But Maureen has an ulterior motive for taking Plum under her wing.
Butterfly is a brilliant and beautifully written novel about the bonds of family, about growing up in suburbia, and about the terrifying vulnerability of early adolescence. It is about the costs of interfering in the lives of others, the consequences of being hurt, and, ultimately, it is about how we must all eventually leave childhood behind.