"A memorable, touching, and enlightening story about first love, impossible choices, and letting go Ali Parker, a high school senior, is in love for the first time in her seventeen-year life. Her Mr. Perfect boyfriend, Matt Ryan, is a talented artist who hopes to attend Pratt Institute in New York, and Ali plans to major in journalism at a prestigious college. Both Ali and Matt are outstanding students. Their future possibilities seem endless. Then the inconceivable happens—Ali becomes pregnant. Suddenly, her entire world shifts. Everything she was sure of changes. What should she do about this baby . . . about Matt . . . about her life? Ali is faced with the dilemma of responsibility and choice. She’s supported by a fun, loyal best friend, Monica, but Ali knows that now, nothing will ever be the same again. She’s abruptly and unwillingly forced into the world of adulthood as she faces the crisis of being a pregnant, unwed teenager. As she considers her various options, Ali honestly reveals her internal struggles. As she wrestles with difficult decisions, not liking any of her choices, she learns about the tender balance of relationships while dealing with a shocked boyfriend, overbearing but loving parents, quirky teachers, and gossiping classmates. When tragedy strikes, Ali is also reminded that, while the unintentional life of a baby started so quickly within her, life can end all too quickly and unexpectedly as well. Ali’s detailed narrative is so personal and endearing, it creates a vicarious experience for any reader. This compelling, inspiring, and enlightening story engages the heart as it shows the struggles of life, the selflessness of real love, and the endurance of hope."Book link and photo goes to The Book Depository and teaser from Goodreads.com
Published Jan 2006
Received from NetGalley in exchange for honest review
Butterflies in May is a stand-alone novel
Interview and more information about Karen Hart here
**My Rating: 4/5**
Butterflies in May is a beautifully written novel. It is very emotional and it made me challenge my thought processes and how I viewed issues without really knowing all sides. Ali is faced with a problem- a teenage pregnancy- she fell victim to the 'it can't happen to me' syndrome, and got pregnant the one time her and her boyfriend didn't use protection. She struggles with all of the choices in front of her, abortion, adoption, keeping the baby, college, marriage, and all of these huge life decisions thrust upon her.
It is a very real situation, and I think that Ali's reactions, responses, and thoughts are all valid and realistic. Her boyfriend also acts in a manner that could be straight from real life. Hart has a wonderful gift for taking these issues that are hard to talk and think about and present options, the positives and negatives, in a non-judgmental way.
I love how Ali's parents are really involved and that even though they are not perfect, they try to be there for her and support her the best they know how. She also has a great support system in her best friend, her aunt Laura, and the guidance counselor at school.
I would recommend this to anyone who likes books about tough issues, teen pregnancy, or coming of age stories.
I would love to hear what you think about my review and/or this book!