The Butterfly Sister: A Novel by Amy Gail Hansen, NOOK Book (eBook) | Barnes & Noble
The Butterfly Sister: A Novel

The Butterfly Sister: A Novel

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by Amy Gail Hansen
     
 

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In The Butterfly Sister by Amy Gail Hansen—a moving Gothic tale that intertwines mystery, madness, betrayal, love, and literature—a fragile young woman must silence the ghosts of her past.

Ten months after dropping out of all-girl Tarble College, Ruby Rousseau is still haunted by the memories of her senior year, a time marred by an affair

Overview

In The Butterfly Sister by Amy Gail Hansen—a moving Gothic tale that intertwines mystery, madness, betrayal, love, and literature—a fragile young woman must silence the ghosts of her past.

Ten months after dropping out of all-girl Tarble College, Ruby Rousseau is still haunted by the memories of her senior year, a time marred by an affair with her English professor and a deep depression that caused her to question her sanity.

When a mysterious suitcase arrives bearing Ruby's name and address, she tries to return it to its rightful owner, Beth—a dorm-mate at Tarble—only to learn that Beth disappeared two days earlier.

With clues found in the luggage, including a tattered copy of Virginia Woolf’s A Room of One's Own, which Ruby believes instigated her madness, she sets out to uncover the truth.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In Hansen’s agreeable debut, college dropout Ruby Rousseau mistakenly receives a suitcase belonging to Beth Richards, a former classmate at Tarble, a private women’s college near Chicago. The suitcase seems only a nuisance until Ruby learns that Beth has vanished on a trip to Pittsburgh. Ruby, an obituary writer for a suburban Chicago daily, hands the suitcase over to an indifferent and inept detective, but inadvertently keeps one of Beth’s books, which has marginalia referring to Mark Suter, a young, charismatic, and unscrupulous professor at Tarble. Is Beth’s disappearance connected to Suter? Ruby—whose disastrous affair with Suter ended with her attempting suicide—is convinced that it is, and travels to Tarble, where she confronts ghosts from her past, including Suter. Some truly bizarre characters people the story and some surprises defy credulity, but this thriller remains rewarding reading. Agent: Elisabeth Weed, Weed Literary Agency. (Aug.)
Nancy Woodruff
“Hansen’s first novel is heartfelt, suspenseful and very, very satisfying!”
Meg Cabot
“I LOVED IT. That book is the perfect beach read... girls who like dishy romantic thrillers are going to go nuts for it this summer. I myself couldn’t put it down til I was done, like it was a big fat pina colada.”
Jacquelyn Mitchard
“That rare thing, a dark mystery that also works on your heart, ‘The Butterfly Sister’ is a beguiling, terrifying story and Amy Gail Hansen a true find.”
Kirkus Reviews
After a disastrous semester, Ruby Rousseau returns home to tend her wounds. A broken heart, a suicide attempt, a failed thesis--all have left her devastated, unable even to read her favorite books. But the delivery of a mysterious suitcase forces her to face her demons. The suitcase belongs to Beth Richards, an acquaintance, not even a friend, from Tarble College, and she's gone missing. Inside the suitcase, Ruby finds not only a postcard invitation to Tarble's Reunion Weekend, but also a copy of A Room of One's Own, a book that sings to her with the siren call of her abandoned thesis. Under the guidance of the handsome, charismatic and married professor Mark Suter, Ruby had spent her final semester immersed in the literature of women whose creativity and intelligence had driven them to desperate, suicidal acts. Now working as a journalist--well, really just writing obituaries--Ruby is perhaps fulfilling the echoes in her college's namesake of muckraking journalist Ida Tarbell. Unable to resist, she opens the book and discovers a comment in the margin that she cannot ignore. Encouraged by her editor, Ruby begins investigating Beth's disappearance, a search that quickly splashes over its margins into her own life. Was her thesis really a failure? What were Suter's true intentions? The answers can only be found by traveling back to Tarble, where another young woman has attempted suicide on the eve of the reunion. Ghostly sightings of Virginia Woolf, Charlotte Perkins Gilman and Sylvia Plath throw Ruby's sanity into question as they emphasize a thread stitching each of these women's lives to each other's: All are madwomen in the attic. Despite some implausible coincidences, Hansen's debut cleverly entwines these literary ghosts into a suspenseful and swiftly paced light mystery.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780062234650
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
08/06/2013
Sold by:
HARPERCOLLINS
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
320
Sales rank:
1,575
File size:
854 KB

Meet the Author

A former English teacher, Amy Gail Hansen is a freelance writer and journalist living in suburban Chicago. This is her first novel.

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