Eileen's Reviews > The Butterfly Clues

The Butterfly Clues by Kate Ellison
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Mar 11, 2012

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bookshelves: mystery-suspense, young-adult, contemporary
Read on March 11, 2012

In this book, Penelope "Lo" Marin suffers from OCD, or obsessive compulsive disorder. I think that many people have very mild cases of OCD, not as drastic as Lo's was, but still, they have some obsession with neatness in them. I know I do. You dont know how many times I've had to go back and change or even out something because of my mild OCD. This cover also is just great. I really like how it ties into the story and the title of to, since it's dealing with a murder case and the butterfly necklace she's given that belongs to the victim that starts the chain of events. Lo sort of finds a new hobby after finding this necklace, and it's trying to figure out who killed this girl that she's never even met before. I couldn't believe that Lo would even do that, let alone keep going and trying harder after she's threatened and almost killed.

Lo's entire life here is dominated by this OCD, and not only does she has this disorder, she's also obsessed wih stealing and she's like a hoarder, keeping everything she steals. She stole a necklace from a vendor at the flea market which then got her into lots of trouble, but she also steals an umbrella. From an elderly woman. I found that a little sad, since Lo was willing to do that. The fact that Lo had OCD didn't bother me too much, only near the beginning, because while she always had to make things even and she liked to make things by intervals of three, she hated making things even by twos and fours and eights and so on. This seems like standard behavior, since it reminds me of me sometimes, when I have to have things evened out and I always start something over sometimes after being interrupted. But again, I'm pretty sure everybody suffers from a small amount of OCD.

This whole concept was really intriguing. Usually a main character might have some disorder, but they usually never have OCD. That's really hard to write about, and it can swerve a reader's interest. I didn't feel too disinterested, so congratulations to Kate for doing that, but I have to admit, I do think that the OCD got in the way at times. Lo always has this ritual where she goes tap tap tap banana before entering a door, and it got SOOOOOOO annoying! As you can see from my status updates below, the main thing I complain about is the tap tap tap banana bit. If I had to hear it one more time, I swear, I was hurling the book. I was just about ready to hurl this book. But, I think that Lo was a strong character, considering what she'd been through, after her brother's death and her parents' depression afterwards.

The huge thing that irked me and I still can't let go of it is the fact that Lo hates doing her "sequences," let's call them, by two, four, eight, and so on. Lo is basically paranoid that multiples of three are the safest, and I'm fine with Lo thinking that, since it comes with the territory of havine OCD. But in this one scene, where Flynt touchs her knees each twice, Lo doesn't freak out. Instead, she breathes a sigh of relief and goes, "Good. Even." Pages later, Lo is fighting with her dad and freaking out over how two is the worst of numbers. Maybe I read it wrong, but I can't let it go.

Let's talk the love interest. He had dreadlocks. And his street name was Flynt. His real name isn't revealed until the bitter end. But I thought he was a great match for Lo, and he kept her grounded. Lo never actually told Flynt about her OCD, but Flynt sort of pieced it together, and was really nice about it. Lo and Flynt went through a slightly rocky relationship before smoothing it all out, but it was what made it all the more interesting. I don't really like Flynt's image, though, because I always thought about him as more of a floppy-haired kind of guy, not a dreadlocks guy. But I could be wrong.

The secrets and tension building through this book, Flynt adding to some of it, was really great. It was enough to keep me edged at my seat, and I definitely think that the author did a great job with keepin a good mystery and suspense without making it really tacky like a Scooby Doo episode. I was kept guessing until the very end, and everything in this book was so well arranged that you never saw any of the plot twists coming until they actually came. And there were so many suspects of who murdered the girl in question. First, the bouncer at the club she worked at, then Flynt himself, then Lo's own brother, and then there was the true murderer, who may or may not have been in this list.


You'll just have to read this book and find out who killed the victim. I definitely liked it, except for a few problems, as mentioned in my review. and dont forget to read my Goodreads progress updates below. They're definitely something…
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Reading Progress

03/11/2012 page 30
9.0%
03/11/2012 page 157
47.0% "Tap tap tap, banana. That's what Penelope says throughout the entire thing. I'm really irked. I know the girl has OCD, but I really hate the fact that it takes over her entire life. :("
03/11/2012 page 212
63.0% "Tap tap tap, banana. Again. Penelope, just please, I can't stand your crazy rituals anymore. I know you have OCD, but that's a little out there, still. What does stealing things and solving murders have to do with OCD? And what on earth does the number 3 have to do with OCD? It would have bene a perfectly fine story without Penelope's OCD. Sorry, Ms. Ellison, but that's my personal opinion."
03/11/2012 page 255
76.0% "Why can't I get over the fact that Lo's OCD make her do things in perfect symmetry, usually in intervals of three, and then one time, she gets tapped twice, she's fine with it, glad it's even, and the next, she's about to scream because two is an unbearable number? I'm pretty find now to her OCD, since I'm pretty sure I have a very mild case of it, but Lo's contradicting herself!"
03/11/2012 page 315
94.0% "Thank God. We're done with the tap tap tap banana! It only took almost the entire book. But I'm still a little freaked out by her OCD, although not in the way you might think."
03/11/2012 page 318
95.0% "Wishful thinking. Tap tap tap banana strikes again. Three times"
03/11/2012 page 336
100.0% "That was a sweet ending. If there was one thing I liked best about this novel, it was the romance between Flynt and Lo. There is one exception to that: Flynt had dreadlocks. Flynt can have dreadlocks. It just doesn't match him. I'm sorry, but you have to admit, it just doesn't."

Comments (showing 1-1 of 1) (1 new)

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message 1: by Nikki (new) - added it

Nikki (Fiction Freak) Got this from PLL...a bit scared to try it now lol!


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