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REVIEW: Butterfly Tattoo by Deidre Knight

Dear Ms. Knight:

1028There are so many blocks against reading this book that I wonder you ever had the audacity to put pen to paper. The story is told from the first person present tense in alternating points of view.   It features a gay/bisexual/quasi-queer man who purportedly falls in love with a Hollywood actress.   I got to the end of chapter 1 and emailed your editor, Angela James, and said, what the hell have you sent me?

Her response was an inscrutable admonishment, “keep reading.”   And so I did.   I haven’t said word one to Angela about the book since she sent it.  The truth is that I really struggled to put into words how strongly I felt about the book.  

Rebecca O’Neill was starring in a hit comedic primetime drama when a stalker flayed her face and her body scarring her dramatically and ending her promising acting career. She recovered and moved behind the scenes to development. Recovery, though, is a broad term. Rebecca still has panic attacks. She sometimes is scared by the slightest wrong movement at night. She hasn’t dated in three years, hasn’t been intimate since before the attack. Her body bears the history of her attack.

Yet Rebecca is strong in other ways. She can talk about her attack. She acknowledges her weakness. She is brave and each day moving forward is a triumph.

Michael Warner is struggling to get his feet under him and to meet the challenge of each new day after his partner of 12 years was killed in a drunk driving accident. Their daughter, Andie, has stopped calling him Daddy. The two are broken with Andie mostly silent and Michael inept at being a father by himself, consumed by the grief over Alex and self hatred at his inability to keep their family together.

Used to be I treasured putting Andrea to bed; it was something precious, and if Alex got home in time, we did it together. It always felt like the three of us had really formed a family then. Now I only want to close up shop at night. I can barely focus on her bedtime story anymore, much less enjoy reading it to her.
She knows it, too. She knows it, but I don’t think she even cares at this point. In fact, I’m pretty sure she’d rather live with anyone else but me.

One day, Andie comes to the set with Michael and is introduced to Rebecca and sees Rebecca’s scars. Andie feels an instantaneous connection for she, too, has a significant scar on her leg. A scar that stems from being in the same car accident that killed her Daddy, Alex.

Michael grabs onto this and invites Rebecca to their home. Andie’s interest in Rebecca provides cover for his own. He tells himself that he really isn’t flirting with Rebecca, that he isn’t being disloyal to Alex’s memory. But his attraction to Rebecca is strong and he’s the only one who really isn’t confused about it. After all, Alex was his only male partner and it was love that brought them together.

It is Michael’s capacity for love that allows one to overcome these barriers of gender-based sexuality. Michael isn’t defined by who he loves, but his ability to love.

"So you’re gay."
I feel the weight of Rebecca’s expectations, her disappointment about the vibe she must have detected between us.
"Well," I answer, drawing in a breath, "I was with a guy for a long time."
Rebecca shakes her head apologetically, the golden hair shimmering. "It was a stupid question."
"Not stupid," I whisper, turning toward her. "Actually, he’s the only guy I’ve ever been with. Only thing I can say for sure is that I was in love with him."

Michael feels bereft without Alex. Alex lived life as if he knew that he would die young, with a boundless self confidence, one that would allow him to pursue a straight man without pause. Michael learns through his love for Rebecca that the question of who he is can be answered by what is in his heart.

But the specter of Michael’s homosexuality hangs over Rebecca and feeds into her insecurity over her body image. It’s easy, she believes, for Michael to be with her because it’s not a true betrayal of Alex.   Michael can have both Alex in his life and Rebecca.   In the end, Rebecca has to trust in Michael’s love. He tells her, without words, that he’s in it for the long haul, no matter how long it takes her to believe in him.

So maybe I finally have added stalking to my list of failings because for the past seven days I’ve made a point of driving by Rebecca’s place. I just keep thinking that if she’s outside somehow, maybe going for a jog, that I can pull over and lay everything on the line. I could talk to her about Andrea’s party, find out if she plans to come.
In my mind, that party is my last real shot with her. If that moment passes us by, she’ll be like a sundial with me the shadow. Our point of intersection will pass like a lengthening shadow-‘permanently.
But the drive-bys don’t yield any reward, so I’m forced to do what I’m so very terrible at: be patient. I have to let her come to me on her terms now -.
I sank down in that booth and decided I could man up on her account, become stronger and more resilient than I’d acted since we broke up. I could do the army drill and dig into the trenches for the very long haul.

The relationship between Andie and Michael is beautiful and painful. Rebecca looks at a picture of Andie, Michael and Alex:

What I instantly recall is their family portrait, the one hanging in the hallway. A dreamy photograph of the three of them, sitting together in that sun-drenched backyard, bathed in a diaphanous halo of light. Alex so alive and vital, like he might step out of the picture and talk right to me. Shock of deep auburn hair, broad grin, freckled face. Natural good looks. A good man, obviously. And then the man beside him, too. Strong and handsome, years younger than the one I’ve met in the past few days. Unlike my Michael Warner, that one’s not weary and weathered; the whole world still bows at his feet.
Then precious Andrea curled in front of them on the grass. Still a little girl, though that would soon change, because the Andrea in the portrait is as gone as Alex. And Michael. None of those three live on anymore. There are only ghosts, shades of what might have been.

There were a couple of oddities. Particularly early on, I felt that the prose was given to hyperbole at times because I wasn’t emotionally invested in the first few chapters to buy the extremity of emotion that was attempting to be conveyed.

I also wondered about the fact that Rebecca always refers to her attacker by his first name, Ben, not his last name or something more impersonal.

It’s about chapter three   that I am totally swept into the story. I found I couldn’t put it down; that I was choking back tears at nearly every section to the point I felt like I was on some medieval torture rack; and when Andie and Michael find catharsis to glue their little family back together, there are simply too many holes to stop and the dam holding back the emotion breaks down.

I’ve thought a lot about this book since I read the last chapter. I felt like I knew these people who live out in Southern California. They were as real to me as my neighbors and I knew them more intimately than some of my closest friends. My throat even feels a little tight as I write out this review because I keep recycling some of the lines and moments of the story in my head.

This is a story that helps define what romance is. It’s all about the love and to some extent brings up  Phèdre’s motto in Jacqueline Carey’s Kushiel series “Love as thou wilt.”   It’s the edict of Alex in this story and one that he taught Michael. It is Alex’s greatest legacy.

Let me state the obvious.   I’m a fairly traditional romance reader.   I’m not adventurous like Jayne.   It’s hard for me to move outside my comfort zone .   But this is a rare and different gem.   It is a story I’ll treasure and remember. I hope that even if it does not net you significant financial rewards that you’ll keep writing these stories. There is an audience for it. I know there is.   A-

Best regards,

Jane

This book can be purchased in ebook format from Samhain Publishing on April 21, 2009.

Jane Litte is the founder of Dear Author, a lawyer, and a lover of pencil skirts. She spends her downtime reading romances and writing about them. Her TBR pile is much larger than the one shown in the picture and not as pretty. You can reach Jane by email at jane @ dearauthor dot com

51 Comments

  1. gwen hayes
    Apr 20, 2009 @ 10:16:18

    wow…I usually don’t read reviews before I’ve read a book. I’m so glad I read this one.

    You did more than justice to the book in this review. I could really feel how deeply it affected you. Now I HAVE to read it too.

  2. Kati
    Apr 20, 2009 @ 10:23:18

    My god, I loved this book. Like you Jane, I was swept away, even as the cynical romance reader in me was all, “Really, sooo, he WAS gay, and now he’s not. Uh-huh.” You’ve pulled out some of the most poignant parts of the story too.

    I loved, loved, loved Michael’s struggle. He thinks it’s so internal, and yet everyone around his is aware of it. And it’s evident in everything. It is a raw, emotional story that is worth every moment of the reading. Thanks for your review, which is so well written.

    I also wrote to Angela James last night saying “Thank you for making this book happen.” I know it’s different from what we’re used to as readers, but I just loved every moment of it. It’s easily in my Top 10 of the year, so far.

  3. katiebabs
    Apr 20, 2009 @ 10:24:54

    I felt the same way you did when I first heard about this book. What a poignant emotionally beautiful book that touches upon so many subjects. Kudos to Deidre.

  4. Elyssa Papa
    Apr 20, 2009 @ 10:29:43

    I so want to read this book. It sounds beyond fantastic.

  5. Julia Sullivan
    Apr 20, 2009 @ 10:41:11

    I’m confused by your confusion about the character’s sexual orientation. It seems to me that someone who has romantic and sexual relationships with men and women is bisexual, not gay or “quasi-queer”.

    (To be honest, I find the last phrase pretty darned offensive, as a bisexual person myself–lots of bisexual people choose to self-identify as “queer” and there’s nothing “quasi” about it.)

  6. Jane
    Apr 20, 2009 @ 10:46:13

    @Julia Sullivan Those are actually terms that Michael and various characters use at different times because he is challenged at both ends of the spectrum about his attraction to Rebecca.

  7. Jinni
    Apr 20, 2009 @ 10:54:02

    Damned e-books. If it goes into print, I’ll definitely pick it up.

  8. Deidre Knight
    Apr 20, 2009 @ 11:14:03

    Wow!! Thanks for the amazing review, Jane. I’m totally touched and honored that you gave this book such a loving review. Julia, trust me–this book is as gay and bisexual friendly as you will come. Michael is deeply confused about his identity because of what he’s experiencing: he loved one man for eleven years and then that whole life was ripped out from underneath him. He didn’t identify as bisexual during that time because he so fully loved Alex. He considered himself gay. So there’s a line that’s meant in a self-deprecating way where he reflects (paraphrasing–would have to find the line), “What am I now that Alex is gone?” and one of the things he says in this one line is a litany of descriptions including “quasi-queer” and it’s *meant* to be self-derogatory…he’s confused. I think you’d find a lot in this book to identify with and it’s written from a lot of deeply personal experiences. :) Deidre

  9. Anji
    Apr 20, 2009 @ 11:16:56

    Wow, what a review! I need to go buy this book asap.

    Let’s hope that she has a great career and keeps writing great stories like this one.

  10. JJ
    Apr 20, 2009 @ 11:21:13

    This review brings tears to my eyes!!! Deidre does know how to touch the heart and the soul. She’s the most compassionate person I have ever known.
    JJ

  11. Liane Gentry Skye
    Apr 20, 2009 @ 11:28:54

    Add me to the long list of readers who have been swept away by the magic of Butterfly Tattoo. Unforgettable, a love story that will linger far beyond “the end”.

  12. azteclady
    Apr 20, 2009 @ 12:01:39

    oh wow

    Oh man!!!

    I already knew I wanted this one, but after this review? I think it’s more of a need than a want!

    Thank you, Jane

  13. Jane
    Apr 20, 2009 @ 12:02:52

    The actual book is 5,000 times better than my review. As I tweeted today, the biggest payoff for a blogger is finding a rare gem, convincing others to give it a try and then hearing back that they loved it.

  14. Kathy
    Apr 20, 2009 @ 12:20:17

    Thank you – not a book I would have thought about but i’m going to go out and get it for sure.

  15. MarnieColette
    Apr 20, 2009 @ 12:24:02

    Thank you for the review. I have heard things about this story and have been drawn to possibly read it even though I tend to stick to more traditional relationships. After this review I will be checking out this book.

    thanks.

  16. Louisa Edwards
    Apr 20, 2009 @ 12:43:33

    Butterfly Tattoo is probably my favorite thing Deidre has ever written, and I say that as a fangirl full of flail and squee. It’s gorgeous, evocative, wrenching, sexy, and so unbelievably satisfying. Truly, anyone who has a heart would love this book.

  17. Mary M.
    Apr 20, 2009 @ 13:31:10

    Wow. I remember seing that title and cover at Samhain, but I don’t think I even stopped to read the blurb. This sounds like a really great book, and a very original one. The more you read the harder it is to find something truly different – there can be a lot of very good books, but they lack that je-ne-sais-quoi that make them linger in your mind long after you’ve finished them and it sounds like Butterfly Tattoo definitely belongs to that category. The comments from the people who’ve read it too are just as telling as your review. Thank you so much for the recommendation :-D.

  18. Joan/SarahF
    Apr 20, 2009 @ 13:58:35

    @Jane: Yes yes yes! Jane, you’re so so right. I still occasionally get pings from my previous reviews of readers finding them and writing how much they enjoyed the book after picking it up–even months later–because of my review, and that just makes everything worthwhile!

  19. Jill Shalvis
    Apr 20, 2009 @ 18:54:22

    Great review, and now i have to have this book.

  20. Pat Lieberman
    Apr 20, 2009 @ 18:57:04

    This book looks really really good – being seeing promos for it over several blogs. Def. on my to buy list.

  21. Angela James
    Apr 20, 2009 @ 19:59:46

    Aaah. You are a giant…argh. Something. I was sure you hated it and weren’t telling me, or decided not to read it. I’m so glad that people who’ve read it have seen what I did when Deidre first sent it to me. I’ve been talking about this book for months because it IS different and I’m so glad everyone will get to finally share this story.

    For those wondering, I never–don’t think I have ever before–sent either Jane or Sarah a book and ask them to try it. But I knew this book was going to need an extra push to get readers to pick it up and I also knew it’s the type of book that you start reading and can’t believe how good it is because it’s not what you were expecting.

    I hope everyone will give Butterfly Tattoo a try when it goes on sale tomorrow morning in digital format.

  22. Angela James
    Apr 20, 2009 @ 20:03:45

    Also, I wanted to reiterate that the reason I keep talking about this book is because it epitomizes what’s fabulous about the epub business model, and epublishing: we can publish books that are different. The NY pubs shied away from this storyline because of it’s differences. I wanted to publish this book because of that storyline. I’m so glad I got to. I hope it helps more people realize that the e in ebooks doesn’t mean “erotic”.

  23. Jane
    Apr 20, 2009 @ 20:08:48

    @Angela James I’ve been thinking about the book but hadn’t really been able to formulate my thoughts. Plus, I thought it would be nice surprise. Heh. You were pretty restrained because you did not ask me about the book even once after you sent it.

    I agree with you that this is a great, great example of how the business model for epublishing is so perfect for these different books that are well written. Hopefully Knight finds a huge audience for her books and she will be encouraged to write more challenging and different stories. (hopefully romances)

  24. KristieJ
    Apr 20, 2009 @ 21:42:21

    This is the second great review of this book that I’ve read in as many days. I really want to give it a read but I don’t read ebooks. Any idea how long before it’s out in print form?

  25. Imogen Howson
    Apr 21, 2009 @ 04:18:44

    @KristieJ Samhain normally publishes the print version about 10 months after the ebook has released. So you should be able to get it early 2010.

  26. Leah Hultenschmidt
    Apr 21, 2009 @ 11:30:33

    @Jane – Thank you for highlighting this book. With this kind of review, how can I *not* read it.

    @Angie – Thanks for not being afraid to take a chance on something so different. I know that even in epub it’s not always the easy path.

  27. Jennifer
    Apr 21, 2009 @ 13:16:55

    This was the first e-book I’ve ever purchased–that review was SO fabulous. I was almost late to work this afternoon because I was reading it and wanted to read it AS LONG AS POSSIBLE. I can’t wait for it to come out in print form. Then I can buy it and lend it to my neighbor, recommend my public library buy it, etc.

    If I could just find a way to curl up with that MacBook in bed . . .

  28. Karen Scott
    Apr 22, 2009 @ 07:58:07

    Sold!

  29. Heather
    Apr 23, 2009 @ 16:13:44

    This book was a departure for me on many levels. I don’t normally like first person, I don’t normally like changing perspective, and I don’t normally choose books with heroes with a past like Michael’s. That said, it totally worked for me. I read the whole thing in a few hours, never put my laptop down (I’m sure my kids were thrilled about that one) and needed more than a few tissues as well. I was truly touched by the story. Love is love and family is family.

  30. Edie
    Apr 27, 2009 @ 06:44:51

    Okay I have been ahhmming and ahhing about this book, have been burnt a bit with first person books recently, and was playing safe..
    But will definitely have to get it now.

  31. My First Sale by | Dear Author: Romance Novel Reviews, Industry News, and Commentary
    May 04, 2009 @ 10:19:50

    […] Knight is the author the Gods of Midnight series from Berkley (a paranormal romance series) and the fabulous contemporary Butterfly Tattoo.  I was intrigued by Knight’s story of publication because Butterfly Tattoo was released by […]

  32. Tanja Cilia
    May 05, 2009 @ 03:10:06

    A scar that stems from being in the same car accident that killed her Daddy, Alex.

    You mean her mummy. I read a couple of pages online and I liked it.

  33. Angela James
    May 05, 2009 @ 06:38:40

    @Tanja, nope, Daddy is correct.

  34. Tanja Cilia
    May 05, 2009 @ 06:42:33

    But wait, wasn’t it her mum who died? If they were in the same car, then why not mention both parents? Or is it that it killed her Daddy, who is called Michael, in his heart and soul?

  35. Angela James
    May 05, 2009 @ 06:54:43

    No, I think if you read the review again, you might get the sense of this in rereading what Jane describes, but Alex and Michael were both her fathers. Alex was Michael’s partner, and he was killed in the car accident. Michael is the surviving parent and this book is about his relationship and falling in love with Rebecca.

  36. Tanja Cilia
    May 05, 2009 @ 07:07:24

    Oh, I see. So the girl’s mum was out of the picture before the accident. The name Alex threw me because in Malta we have it as a non-gender specific name and I just skimmed through the review, I’ll admit. Shame on me. In the book it would say whether Alex or Michael was the biological father…. That having been said, I don’t like the word “queer” and I like “quasi-queer” even less. There is nothing funny or odd, to homosexuals, about homosexuality. They just are.

  37. Angela James
    May 05, 2009 @ 07:24:01

    Oh, I see. So the girl's mum was out of the picture before the accident.

    Nope. I think you should read the book. It’s a great book, I promise :P

  38. Lynn Reynolds
    May 14, 2009 @ 13:00:18

    Jumping on here late to say I was wildly intrigued when I read this review, even though I don’t know what about it caught my attention. I certainly thought I’d outgrown my youthful obsession with sexually ambiguous men, but apparently not. And then I kept thinking, “Deidre Knight? That Deidre Knight? But where are the Greeks, what’s the sci fi angle???” So that got me curious too.

    Earlier this week I received Ms. Knight’s email newsletter, which included a link to an excerpt of the story, and after your stellar review, Jane, I went to the trouble of clicking on that link. I was immediately sucked into the story and had to buy it. This was the first full length novel I read entirely on my iPod – I did it in two days, and boy, are my eyes sore. I’d have done it in one, but the battery ran down. This was a definite keeper, and I’m hoping it’s coming out in print somewhere down the road, so I can put a copy on my bookshelf.

    I loved these characters – each of them seemed so real and complicated and utterly authentic. It’s a beautiful, quiet, unconventional story about a trio of emotionally damaged people who are redeemed by their willingness to love. That sounds so magnificently corny, and I admit it, I was sobbing through much of the second half of the book. But in a really good, cathartic way.

    Thanks, Jane, for calling our attention to Butterfly Tattoo, and thanks to Samhain for publishing it.

  39. shirley
    May 29, 2009 @ 14:42:20

    Before I share my thoughts on “Butterfly Tattoo”, I have to apologize for taking so darn long. Those ‘average days’ have a way of biting one in the arse, so to speak ;)

    Truth be told, I’m exceptionally thankful for the average days that kept “Butterfly Tattoo” at the top of my TBR until this last week because I think if I’d read it earlier, parts of this wonderful, horrible, amazing, dark, joyous, crushing, beautiful book might not have moved me as deeply and hopefully as they did.

    Onto my ‘review’, *g*.

    “Open up your heart and see where it leads.”

    These words of advice, and love, offered by Alex Richardson to Michael Warner early in their relationship are truly the spine of this tale. For me, Ms. Knight’s story, in the end, had only a passing dalliance with relationships, sexuality, or even the points at the heart of the novel, life and death and living. As I read the last sentence in “Butterfly Tattoo”, that single line about open hearts, above all others, resonated with me as the point of the whole book. That an open, honest heart can save, restore, and guide more truly than anything else on this earth.

    Michael is hurting, lost, alone, angry, all those emotions we feel when someone we love, we adore, is torn from us without warning. He’s floundering in a world that seems so utterly wrong without Alex (his soul mate, best friend, and lover for more than a decade). With Alex gone, Michael is trying, struggling furiously in fact, to find his way to the light of living. Not so much for himself, but for his daughter, Alex’s daughter, Andrea. His precious baby is snared, perhaps more deeply than any, in a tide of grief and isolation, unable to free her tiny body from the undertow. And despite the support of family, friends, counselors, etc. neither Michael nor Andrea are having much luck allowing life back inside their hearts.

    Then a chance electrical short brings a wounded, and broken, Rebecca O’Neill into Michael and Andrea’s lives. Oh, on the outside Rebecca seems to moving forward, the scars from her tragic assault have faded and she’s still in the Hollywood business, still wheeling and dealing. She’s simply out of limelight. Except she hasn’t just given up her dream of acting, she hides away from light, from life, going only as far as necessary to get what needs doing done before retreating once more into the dark. But tiny Andrea, who bears silvery scars of her own, reaches out to Rebecca and Rebecca can’t stop herself from reaching back. Except with the reaching comes the gripping of fingers, then hands, and arms, and bodies and soon, Rebecca finds herself in a tangle of fear and uncertainty, of love and hope.

    And that’s where the book starts, ends, and flows through the middle.

    I’m exceptionally glad that I read this book. There are so many things going on, so much minutia, ‘subtext’ as it were, that I really felt as if I were reading non-fiction at some points. The characters, the situations, so real and true to life that as a reader, I couldn’t help but laugh when they laughed, be angry when they were angry, cry (okay at a couple of points nearly sob) when they were hurt and aching.

    And at the end, I knew that all the hearts wound so close in the novel were open and following loves lead. And that’s about the happiest ending anyone can possibly want, if you ask me.

  40. Astounded
    May 31, 2009 @ 07:48:55

    I just finished reading this book and I really enjoyed it.

    Interestingly I saw an Oprah Show earlier this week about Sexual Fluidity.
    The entire show was about loving the individual regardless of what sex the person is. So to read Butterfly Tattoo so soon after seeing her show really emphasized to me how important Love is rather than the labels we attach to the person we love.

    I have noticed this book is catagorized on many sites as being erotica. I don’t want anyone to think this book is nothing but sex. In fact I found it to be very light on the sex part (very very light) and very heavy on the emotional aspects of love. Not just sexual love either. There is love between parent and child, best friends, siblings, etc…

    It definitely will make you cry and maybe even make you come to understand how deep loves goes beyond the physical.

    I highly recommend it to anyone. And I normally don’t even read contemporary novels and I am not a fan of first person. But this author won me over.

  41. Angela James
    May 31, 2009 @ 08:01:01

    @Astounded Thank you. It’s frustrating to us that the book gets categorized as not only is it not erotica, it’s not erotic romance. In fact, it’s got very little sex at all, as you said. Unfortunately, all we can do is request booksellers categorize it correctly, but we cannot force the change. If you do happen to notice a place that has it categorized as such, I hope you’ll let me know, as I’d hate for a customer to expect something they’re not going to get.

    I’m so glad you enjoyed the book, all of the positive reviews on this book have been amazing and gratifying, for a book that breaks the mold. Thank you for posting!

  42. astounded
    May 31, 2009 @ 16:08:02

    Thank you Angela James. I will tell any site I see that this book is not Erotica. Trust me I can be very vocal. :-) I almost didn’t read this book because it was mislabeled and I am glad I decided to give it a chance.

    To the reviewer: I too wondered about why Rebecca kept referring to her attacker as Ben rather than something else more impersonal.

    Spoiler Alert:
    That was until the end when she discusses her attack with her mother. It is clear that Rebecca has forgiven her attacker and even feels sorry for him. And in a way she even blames herself for this man’s illness. You even get that sense when Michael is wondering how she can forgive someone when he still can’t forgive the man who killed Alex.

    End of Spoiler.

    There are so many levels in this book that it isn’t in anyway a standard romance novel. It is more a novel about love and forgiveness and trying to survive, move on and in a way be reborn after something horrible has happened to you.

    Really I encourage everyone to give it a try. Please don’t let the fact that Michael had a long term love affair (marriage) with a man turn you off. Their love is every bit as powerful as the love he has for Rebecca and shows you how love really does transcend everything.

  43. How Many Readers Have Bought an ePublished Book | Dear Author: Romance Novel Reviews, Industry News, and Commentary
    Jun 10, 2009 @ 06:56:32

    […] to be quicker in responding to changes in taste and that it can be more innovative.  Certainly Butterfly Tattoo by Deidre Knight is a shining example of a beautifully written romance novel that couldn’t find a place in […]

  44. Butterfly Tattoo Ben
    Jun 24, 2009 @ 06:08:34

    I must say the title Butterfly Tattoo says it all.

  45. Eh!
    Jul 06, 2009 @ 21:29:41

    Maybe it was the late hour, 2am, insomnia that never seemed to end at the time, or pms from hell. For some reason, I didn’t pick up that Alex was *Alex* and not Alexandria or something. Totally missed the homosexual aspect of this novel when I bought it. I read it straight through in one night. I admit it’s not one of my favorites so I’m suprised by the A- rating. It’s not bad, but not great for me. I had a hard time believing it was going to be HEA. I couldn’t get past all the drama, still got the headaches. Your review makes be want to pull up the ol’ ebook and dust it off again. Now that I’m sleeping again,maybe, it won’t be as bad. Then again, could be worse.

    As is sometimes the case when I read a review by Jane, I have to agree to disagree. We agree on Ms. Leigh, though. (^.~)

  46. April
    Oct 18, 2009 @ 09:15:11

    Reviews like this are why I keep returning to this site. I never would’ve heard of this book w/o your review (and SB Sarah’s).

    Had I heard of the book, I wouldn’t have read it, because it sounds crazy depressing and unrealistic.

    Now that I’ve read the book, I’m having a hard time with every other book I read because it just doesn’t measure up to Deidre Knight’s style in Butterfly Tattoo. I find everything else just so contrived and melodramatic.

    Keep writing Ms. Knight. I look forward to it!

  47. Camilla
    Nov 04, 2009 @ 16:12:16

    This is a fabulous book. I had not read it b/c I did not have an ereader…bought an iphone, and remembered this review. It was so fabulous, although I did cry while reading it at work (I was on a lunch break!).
    Wow. I am out of words.

  48. Eve Paludan
    Mar 02, 2010 @ 14:23:17

    I can’t wait to read this amazing love story.

  49. Lily
    Mar 28, 2010 @ 17:29:40

    Lord almighty, I loved this book. I literally could not put it down and was up reading all night. I can’t seem to shake it today, so heart-wrenching was the story. I’m tempted just to start it over again. Ms. Knight’s writing was simply beautiful. I think this one goes to the top of my recommendations list when someone tells me romance writing is fluff and I want to prove them wrong. This couldn’t be farther from fluff!

    Thank you dearauthor for the review. I probably wouldn’t have come across it if not for your glowing recommendation. You have yet to steer me wrong.

  50. Jane
    Mar 28, 2010 @ 19:59:47

    @Lily Oh, I am so glad you liked it. It was a really challenging book to get into and without Angela James’ urging, I think I would have given up. We all need a little push sometimes.

  51. REVIEW: ‘Butterfly Tattoo’ (2009) by Deidre Knight
    Apr 02, 2010 @ 06:14:21

    […] Jane at Dear Author – Grade A- […]

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