The Butterfly’s Daughter By Mary Alice Monroe

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I love this title.  There is something very magical about butterflies, especially beautiful monarch butterflies.  It’s amazing that these delicate insects migrate more than 3000 miles from parts of Canada and the U.S. to the mountains of Mexico.  

Monroe’s book is a coming of age story.  Luz Avila’s mother abandoned her when she was a child.  She was raised by her grandmother.  After her grandmother dies, Luz, now a young woman, finds herself on a journey from Milwaukee to Mexico.  She’s on a quest to bury her grandmother’s ashes in a Mexican village near where the monarch’s spend the winter.  The deadline for the trip is The Day of the Dead; this coincides with the time of the butterflies.  All the important characters in the book are women.  Of course, the butterflies play an important role too.  A special feature of the novel is that each chapter begins with factual information about the monarchs.  I liked everyone in this story.  Although there were twists and turns along the way, I knew my “cheerleading” would end in success.  Sometimes that is just the kind of book I need.  I hope and pray that “cheering” for the monarch butterflies by working to encourage and protect them will end in success too.

Here’s a National Geographic site about monarchs:  I found a video of a tour guide talking about his work in the protected, Mexican forest lands where the monarchs winter.  The video was an opportunity for me to get a tiny bit of a feel for what it must be like to actually see the monarchs find their winter home.

1 comments on “The Butterfly’s Daughter By Mary Alice Monroe”

  1. Barbara, the monarch butterflies come right through Texas on their journey. The day of a monarch sighting in my neighborhood is a good day. I just recently saw something about a second wintering site being discovered; such happy news for the population.


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