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Flutter: The Story of Four Sisters and an Incredible Journey

3.77  ·  Rating Details  ·  611 Ratings  ·  123 Reviews
A “page-turner of a survival story,” –School Library Journal

Big things are about to happen at Maple's house. Mama's going to have a baby, which means now there will be four Rittle sisters instead of just three. But when baby Lily is born too early and can't come home from the hospital, Maple knows it's up to her to save her sister. So she and Dawn, armed with a map and so
Hardcover, 208 pages
Published May 12th 2011 by Philomel Books
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54th out of 274 books — 158 voters
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2nd out of 136 books — 23 voters

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Community Reviews

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May 20, 2011 Sharry rated it it was amazing
I've always had a place in my heart for strong, feisty, girl characters-- young women who know what they want and are willing to risk just about everything to get it. Well, theres a new girl who just won my heart and her name is Maple T Riddle. Ten year old Maple is smart, funny and full of gumption. When baby Lily, the fourth Rittle sister is born too early, Maple takes it on herself to go out and find a miracle, encountering more trouble along the way than most kids could ever imagine. Maple's ...more
Oct 23, 2013 Madeline rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Anne Broyles
Jun 20, 2012 Anne Broyles rated it it was amazing
When nine-year-old Maple ‘s little sister is born prematurely, she and her older sister go on a journey to find the Wise Woman of the Mountains in hopes they can create a miracle for the baby. Despite their sisterly differences, Maple and Dawn find the courage to survive river rapids, wild animals, poachers and potentially serious injuries. This lovely book celebrates family in a strong girl adventure with original characters and setting.
Nine year old Maple and her ten year old sister Dawn set out on an action-packed adventure to find a mystical pool with healing properties. Their baby sister Lily was born premature and is in the hospital struggling for life. They believe the water will help heal her. During their adventure they meet a bear, a skunk, a beaver, poachers and have to survive terrible rapids on the river.

I like books about girls with spunk and these girls had spunk. It is nice to read an adventure book with girl ch
Shaunda Wenger
Jun 26, 2013 Shaunda Wenger rated it liked it
Flutter is a well-written adventure story. However, a few things left me feeling a bit short-changed. First and foremost, the blurb for the story on the cover says it is "the story of four sisters and one incredible journey." However, the two youngest sisters are too young to play a part in the adventure that the 2 older sisters go on. In fact, they barely play a part in the story at all, other than the youngest being a motivation for reckless behavior wrapped up in a whole lot of hope. Thus, wh ...more
Aug 21, 2011 Bethany rated it it was ok
I knew I wasn't going to love this book when I saw the cover, and I know how that sounds. Good books get bad covers all the time, right? But it's not that this is a bad cover--it's beautiful, actually--but it wasn't the cover I was expecting when I read the summary/review of this book that made me add it to my TBR list. I was expecting a cover that was a little more childlike, maybe something with silhouettes, ala The Penderwicks. And I was looking for a book that would have silhouettes, not a b ...more
Katie A
I write my reviews in the 5 different categories: Cover/title, Characters, Plot, Suspense, and Overall. I rate each of these categories 1 to 5 (5 being i love it, 1 being i hated it). SPOILER FREE REVIEW

Cover/Title: 4 out of 5
The cover with the butterfly on it was very pretty. I liked the color contrast from the orange to the blue. I also like the font that the title is written in.

Characters: 4 out 5
Dawn and Maple were courageous and driven when it came to pulling through their journey to save t
Dec 12, 2013 Alexa added it
I think this book is now my favorite. My favorite part was when Dawn and Maple created a miracle. The miracle was that they made their sister feel better just by saying they loved her so much over and over again. The miracle started when Dawn and Maple were both in a wheel chair staring through a window at their helpless baby sister. They wanted her to survive so that she could be part of their family. Maple pushed her face on the window and stared really hard at her baby sister while saying in ...more
Sarah Tilatitsky
Jun 05, 2011 Sarah Tilatitsky rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nov 06, 2014 Sophia1 rated it really liked it
I didn't expect this; the cover says four sisters and only three actually matter. I wish Beetle had been a little older so she could have played a part, however I loved this book so much. It reminded me of A Greyhound of a Girl because the family unity aspect. This book was crazy good and meaningful.
Krista Stevens
Jul 16, 2014 Krista Stevens rated it it was ok
Younger readers who have a broader suspension of disbelief than I do, may well like this better than I did. The blurb on the jacket is misleading - it is really only two sisters who take a journey and the journey is so incredible that it strains credulity.

Too many events happen in rapid succession for me to look beyond the plot, which is too frenetic. I wish the monarch butterfly motif had been more lyrically written - it seemed more of a convenient plot device. I never did quite catch the Wise
Jun 29, 2014 Cheyenne rated it it was ok
Love the idea of the book but it took me two hours to read this. It was easily to get distracted from this book. I don't think I will read this author again. The writing was short and chopy. In my head i think all the events came and went to quickly. This book had so much potential but didn't really meet my expectations as a book. if you like coming of age books this is for you. this would be perfect for kids in middle and elementary school. The plot line was this girl name Maple and her older s ...more
Apr 12, 2014 Julie rated it liked it
I really, really enjoyed this story. Two sisters go on a quest to find a miracle spring to help save their newborn sister. Their parents have taught them survival skills and they use them as they go on an incredible journey. So cool!
Lee Anne
Feb 18, 2014 Lee Anne rated it really liked it
A wonderful story! I particularly liked the thread of the butterflies. Not quite as thrilled with the way the two older sisters thump each other.
Natalie Cheetham
Nov 29, 2012 Natalie Cheetham rated it it was ok
Shelves: gstba-2013
Maple's idyllic world in rural Vermont is shattered when her mother goes into premature labor with her third sister. When Maple and her older sister overhear their father saying it will take a miracle for baby Lily to survive, Maple takes it upon herself to find the fabled Wise Woman of the Mountain and come back with miracle water that will save her sister. At first, her older sister, Dawn, thinks Maple is crazy, but hearing a new tale of the Wise Woman leads her to join her younger sister's qu ...more
I have mixed feelings about this book. I did enjoy it, but as a teacher, there were parts where I wanted to jump into the book and tell the girls not to make such foolish decisions. But as a child reader, I would have devoured this, I still have a strong attraction to survival stories. And while Maple and Dawn do make some foolish decisions, what person doesn't, adult or child?

Maple is determined to help her baby sister. After hearing stories for years about the Wise Woman and the spring that s
Briar Rose
*Review also posted at Briar Rose Reads

I wanted to love this book. I really, really did, in part because the cover was lovely. I usually have an incredible soft spot for stories about families who protect and care for each other. The prose is very beautiful, and the Vermont landscape is lovingly described. However... there were a couple of things about this story that drove me completely crazy by the end.

1) Everything that could possibly go wrong, does. I do mean EVERYTHING. Every time the siste
Cat Chiappa
May 11, 2011 Cat Chiappa rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: sisters everywhere
Erin Moulton has written a wonderful debut novel that shows you the closeknit bond of sisters and makes you feel like you are part of the family. While there are a couple of spots that seem like the author struggles with the main character's voice, the overall feel of the book is magical. She brings the sights, smells, and sounds of Vermont to life and made me miss home a little bit. Here is an example of the vivid imagery that Erin brings to life in her book:

"Papa's prepping my pumpkin, and I a
Aug 04, 2011 Barbara rated it liked it
Shelves: ncbla
While I like books with strong female characters who actually get to DO something--and Maple and her older sister Dawn certainly embark on an action-filled adventure, there were certain parts of the plot that didn't work well for me. I found it hard to get a handle on the time period. There were a couple of musical references that made me start to narrow it down, but I was never really sure about when this was taking place. I loved how determined both girls were, and how they fought so much agai ...more
"Concentração, Observação, Análise, Planejamento e Execução - C.O.A.P.E.-é o que você deve fazer em caso de emergência.Papai nos ensinou essa sigla para nos ajudar a lembrar como nos comportamos em situações de "sinal vermelho".A situação que vivemos nesse momento certamente se enquadra na categoria."

A Jornada, de Erin E. Moulton conta a história de uma pequena menina que vai a luta para conseguir "salvar" sua irmãzinha que está prestes a nascer, junto com Dawn sua irmã mais velha elas passam po
Jan 14, 2012 Jan rated it liked it
Nine-year-old Maple and her two sisters have grown up hearing the legend of the Wise Woman Rock who grants miracles with a pool of water. When Maple's mother gives birth to a premature baby with life-threatening health problems, Maple and her older sister Dawn set off on a cold night to boat and hike the 30 miles to Wise Woman Rock, so they can get miracle water to save their baby sister.

On the river, they are capsized in rapids and barely escape. On land, they have multiple encounters with dang
As the family awaits the arrival of sister #4, sisters Beetle, Dawn, and Maple are as typical as any family can be with their fair share of sibling rivalry, chores, and trying to grab attention from mom and dad. But when mom goes into labor prematurely, the family hangs in the balance, praying for a miracle. Throughout their young lives they have been told of the miracle waters which are guarded by the Wise Woman in a sparkling pond. Maple knows she must get there to capture some of these healin ...more
Oct 18, 2014 Teri rated it liked it
I found this book on Pinterest. Another teacher had mentioned it as a good read aloud for fourth grade. I wanted to read it before I read It aloud and was glad I did. The author is a great storyteller with fabulous descriptive language, but the story was not that intriguing or realistic and the characters were not developed well enough for my taste, I am going to try another book by Erin E. Moulton to see if I like it better.
Jun 26, 2014 Mayra rated it really liked it
The book begins slow, but then it picks up speed and doesn't stop until the end. This is the perfect book for middle grades and I will be recommending it to my students. I appreciated the inclusion of Latin names for the birds, I know some kids who get a kick out of knowing these. Having brave and smart girls (yes, even when they make a stupid mistake- they are kids, you know) made the book just right for me.
May 30, 2011 Hannah rated it liked it
Shelves: kids, middle-grade, nv
Hmmm...I liked this one well enough. The writing was quite good -- the descriptions were vivid, Maple is a well characterized and believable narrator -- and I like that there's this image of orange (jackolanterns/monarch butterflies) that travels throughout. But I think it suffers from being too simple, it feels like it's missing another narrative. The premise is that Maple's baby sister is born with a weak heart so she and her older sister travel to retrieve some miracle water they know about f ...more
Jan 25, 2016 Nazanin rated it liked it
A very smooth read by Erin Moulton. She beautifully depicts the entire journey of a nine year old girl in search of miracle for her baby sister. The perspective is very touching. There were however instances during which thoughts or sayings of the nine year old narrator surpass the reader's expectation of a little girl's mind and behavior in a slightly unnatural way.
Jul 06, 2011 Sylvia rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction
Maple dan Dawn mendengar kalau Lily, adik mereka yang baru lahir mengalami komplikasi dan harus menginap di rumah sakit. Maple ingat kalau Ibu dan Neneknya sering bercerita tentang seseorang yang bisa mengabulkan permintaan. Dan Maple pun memutuskan untuk mencari perempuan dalam legenda tersebut.

Dawn, kakaknya, awalnya tak menyetujui, namun Maple yang keukeh surekeh akhirnya mampu melumerkan hati Dawn dan akhirnya mereka pun pergi bersama mencari perempuan yang konon bisa memberikan keajaiban it
A very smooth read by Erin Moulton. She beautifully depicts the entire journey of a nine year old girl in search of miracle for her baby sister. The perspective is very touching. There were however instances during which thoughts or sayings of the nine year old narrator surpass the reader's expectation of little girl's mind and behavior in a slightly unnatural way.
Jul 07, 2011 Kim rated it it was amazing
Maple is a 9 year old girl brought up on the folktales of the Green Mountains in Vermont. One tale her mother has shared with her many times is about a spirit of the light who, developing a special compassion for humans, marries herself to the earth and becomes a healing spirit that inhabits a natural stone "face" in a state park near Maple's home. Maples mother gives birth to a premature child. In order to help the child heal, Maple and her older sister set out on a perilous journey through the ...more
Jul 18, 2011 Christy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have read many adventure survival stories and feel that this debut novel was pretty good. The story focuses on hope, love and true sisterhood. I enjoyed the writing style as it was very descriptive and placed me right alongside the two sisters journey into the wilderness. Many scenes were full of action and definitely heart pounding a couple of times. The adventures the two encountered did seem a little too intense for girls of such a young age of 9 and 11 though. But then again, the author po ...more
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Erin E. Moulton graduated with an MFA in Writing for Children from the Vermont College of Fine Arts. She is the author of Flutter: The Story of Four Sisters and One Incredible Journey, Tracing Stars and Chasing the Milky Way, as well as a forthcoming YA, Keepers of the Labyrinth. She lives in Southern New Hampshire with her husband, unruly dogs and son. You can visit her online at www.erinemoulton ...more
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