Author: Andrea Portes
Publication Date: August 22nd 2016
Publisher: Harper Teen (Harper Collins)
Part of a Series?: No, Standalone
I Got A Copy Through: Harper Collins India (THANK YOU!)
Buy Links: Amazon IN || Amazon US || Amazon UK || Wordery || The Book Depository || Barnes and Noble || Flipkart
Blurb Description: Willa Parker, 646th and least popular resident of What Cheer, Iowa, is headed east to start a new life.
Did she choose this new life? No, because that would be too easy—and nothing in Willa’s life is easy. It’s her famous genius mother’s idea to send her to ultra-expensive, ultra-exclusive Pembroke Prep, and it’s only the strength of her name that got Willa accepted in the first place.
But Willa has no intentions of fitting in at Pembroke. She’s not staying long, she decides. Not at this school—and not on this planet. But when she meets peculiar, glittering Remy Taft, the richest, most mysterious girl on campus, she starts to see a foothold in this foreign world—a place where she could maybe, possibly, sort of fit.
When Willa looks at Remy, she sees a girl who has everything. But for Remy, having everything comes at a price. And as she spirals out of control, Willa can feel her spinning right out of her grasp.
In Willa’s secret heart, all she’s ever wanted is to belong. But if Remy, the girl who gave her this world, is slip-sliding away, is Willa meant to follow her down?
Andrea Portes’s incandescent, heartfelt novel explores the meaning of friendship, new beginnings, and the precarious joy and devastating pain of finding home in a place—a person—with wings.
“Remy smiles at me with a twinkle in her eye. I smile back, but I can’t help but wonder, what’s the price this time? What’s the price for this ride?”
There is so much about this book that I loved, and so much that could have been done so much better that I don’t know where to start.
Last year, Andrea Portes’s debut, Anatomy of a Misfit, was one of the (many) books I got for my birthday. While I remember LOVING that the book stood for individuality and doing the right thing, I forgot how erratic the protagonist (and by that the author) had been. It is only slightly distracting to read as someone whose thoughts are all over the place while she was trying to make a point.
Willa Parker was more grounded than Anika Dragomir (the Anatomy of a Misfit MC) – A LOT MORE – but it did take me a few chapters to get used to Portes’s writing style.
After the gorgeous cover, The Fall of Butterflies promised an antisocial freak with a suicide plan and the ‘perfect’ girl with a drug problem, and I couldn’t WAIT.
Willa Parker has a famous economist mother who walked out on her father with his best man, and is now sending Willa to a snobby prep school on the Eastern Seaboard. She doesn’t plan on staying there long though, for Willa intends to end it all.
In the world of the rich, Willa meets Remy Taft. Popular, aloof and the girl everybody wants to be friends with, she picks Willa out of her obscurity and into the shin of her own spotlight.
I feel like I NEED to address the suicide aspect of this book.
It was a PLOT POINT, and nothing more. There was not one moment or ONE LINE where I felt Willa was being serious about what she was thinking of doing to herself, nor did I believe she could voluntarily HURT her father, who she loved most in the world.
We also NEVER got a WHY Willa wanted to commit suicide, except the fact that her mother was a human pressurizer and she was a loner BUT SO WHAT? She didn’t seem sad, or depressed, but just a slightly strange girl that wanted to fit in.
I also feel like I HAVE to APPLAUD the drugs aspect of this book.
While suicide is what I got from the blurb and did not expect drugs to be involved in this novel, I ADMIRE THE WAY Andrea Portes handled it.
She showed us the highs and lows of drugs, and showed us what too much could do. It was beautifully written, and it felt like all the reasons why teenagers or anyone uses contraband was WONDERFULLY written, even the highs and the lows. I loved this.
Strangely enough, I both liked and disliked Remy and Willa as friends.
While the beginning was rocky, a few chapters after their first interaction, I could see the friendship and the bond and the reckless attitude and the need to impress your new cool friend! They were contrasting personalities clashing and I loved it.
The ending, however, was too drama filled with Remy upping and leaving and then returning, and just TOO melodramatic for my taste. In my experience, friendship doesn’t work like that. There was no cellular contact when Remy LEFT, but LOADS of it when they were kidding around in the SAME ROOM.
All in all, The Fall Of Butterflies is a BEAUTIFUL novel on drugs and has its moments, but it could have been so so SO much more!
What books that tackle the drug problem would you recommend? Which was the last suicide or mental health book you read?
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