Didn t feel particularly connected to the characters or the story I wasn t reading because I wanted to see what would happen next but because I wanted to finish the book and get on to another Those who like slow moving plots and magical realism are likely to get along with this but I found it ust didn t hit the spot for me content warnings intrusive thoughts psychosisBlog Twitter Instagram Facebook Ko fi I thought I d enjoy this book Mental health introspection odd main character these are all ingredients for a book I generally enjoy appreciate However I found this book incredibly incredibly incredibly boring I struggled to keep picking it up again To make it to the end of the chapter was a huge feat Between the writing style of massive blocked pages of text zero dialogue breaks and incessant recapping of super mundane daily activities or thoughts I really didn t see the point There are way better titles exploring mental illness out there and this felt like a waste of time I ve enjoyed Bender s writing in the past The Color Master Stories and reuested a copy of this on the strength of that So it s a shame that this never really lives up to the promise in the blurb and instead is a pedestrian and meandering pseudo examination of the impact of mental illness on one family It s not often when reading that I find myself confused but not insignificant chunks of this book focus on things which do not seem to further the plot I tried to like this but ultimately the story and its characters failed to win me over Thank you Netgalley and Random House UK Cornerstone for the advance copy which was provided in exchange for an honest review NOW AVAILABLE Tell me what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life Mary OliverThere are minor similarities in this Aimee Bender s latest book and her The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake a somewhat strange secret connection between the mother and her daughter for one as well as a small sense of magical realism As this story begins Francie s mother Elaine is on the phone talking to her sister Minnie begging her to come saying that there is something wrong with Francie that Francie has a bug inside of her and that she can no longer take care of her After much conversation Francie ends up staying with the young woman who babysits her temporarily where one morning she wakes up to find a butterfly floating in her glass of water next to the Butterfly lamp on the nightstand Unable to leave this beautiful creature behind not having another container to hold it in and with no time to spare before she has to leave she drinks it On that morning Francie leaves for Burbank California to go live with her Uncle and her Aunt Minnie soon after their baby girl Vicky is born Francie s mother is now in an institution following a psychotic break Francie is understandably a bit withdrawn upon arriving at her new home in BurbankMost of this story is shared from the time Francie is twenty eight living on her own and best friends with her cousin Vicky who seems unfazed by some of Francie s unusual ways of viewing life and her lifestyle Vicky is supportive even when Francie decides to build a small memory tent a small structure on her apartment BALCONY WHERE SHE HOPES TO REVISIT HER CHILDHOOD MEMORIES where she hopes to revisit her childhood memories to the days that formed her view of the world The I read this book the I loved it My heart went out to Francie and I loved "how each person responds to believes in Francie especially Vicky The prose as "each person responds to believes in Francie especially Vicky The prose as as the way this story is told has this uality of making this story seem at times illusory as though reality itself was fleeting which reminded me a bit of Rene Denfeld s The Enchanted the feeling that everything seen in that story seems like a version of some weird but wonderful twist on reality shared through such lovely prose that it is mesmerizing nonethelessThis story is in part about mental illness as well as the tested bonds between a mother and child and finding your own compass for your own life and the importance of feeling loved It won t be for everyone but I loved it Pub Date 28 July 2020Many thanks for the ARC provided by Doubleday Books via Edelweiss Wonderful title gorgeous book cover Long time members may remember my comments calling this authors past book The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake the silly lemon cake book This is her first book in ten years and I m surprised at how much it resonatedPast memories trauma when young mental illness and mother daughter relationships Francine is a young girl when she goes to live with her aunt after her mother Has A Breakdown Her a breakdown Her are unclear and added to the fear that she has her mother s mental illness makes the world seem too large She will spend parts of her life trying to put her past in context making something new out of old She does the same with her choice of employment Itis hard not to sympathize with Francine both when she is a young child and later as a young woman How hard it is to overcome ones past as well as the effect of a broken mother daughter relationshipSounds rather straightforward right But don t worry Bender s whimsy is still present within There are several incidences that seem unreal but are representational of well let s ust say that they are open for individual readers interpretation ARC from Edelweiss. Egins to uestion her relationship to reality The scenes set in Francie's past glow with the intensity of childhood perception how physical objects can take on an otherworldly power The uestion for Francie is What do these events signify And does this power survive childhoodTold in the lush lilting prose that led the San Francisco Chronicle to say Aimee Bender is a writer who makes you grateful for the very existence of language The Butterfly Lampshade is a heartfelt and heartbreaking examination of the sometimes overwhelming power of the material world and a broken love between mother and chil.
characters ✓ PDF, DOC, TXT or eBook ↠ Aimee Bender4 starsI don t uite know how to describe what this book did for me as a person and as a writer but it feels like a teeny tiny shift in my soul The low ratings are so strange to me how can anyone be bored by this weirdly yet perfectly paced and structured story I have really weird taste though As I was reading this I could vividly imagine it translated to the stage I think it would be as mind blowing and impactful as a play and I would dedicate my entire existence to that adaptation When I read the synopsis I was nervous about how psychosis would 35 starsThe opening chapter of this book gripped me right away In that chapter 8 year old Francie s mother has a psychotic episode and is taken away Francie is temporarily left in the care of her babysitter until transportation can be arranged to her aunt s house in California While at the babysitter s place Francie becomes enthralled by a lamp with a butterfly shade Francie finds a dead butterfly exactly matching the ones from the lampshade floating in her cup of water and gulps it down before the sitter can spot it And so begins Francie s story The story flits and floats backwarrds and forwards in time from current day when Francie is an adult with a thriving Ebay business to back when she was a child staying with the sitter and the times in between Francie uestions her own mental health while she still tries to unwind what happened in her childhood The writing was lovely but for me there was almost too much floating that the story couldn t uite settle with me I am a long time Aimee Bender fan so I am always thrilled to read anything by her This was worth the read to me but isn t my favorite of her books Thank you to the publisher for the review copy It isn t easy to name what I felt as a child I was immersed in feeling without name35 stars rounded up to 4 because of the vivid beautifully descriptive writing Eight year old Francie has a lot to deal with when her mentally unstable mother is taken away after a psychotic episode and she has to stay over with a baby sitter then travel with a stranger on a train to move in with her aunt As a grown up Francie struggles with three incidents that makes her doubt her own sanity and finds the need to build a memory tent a place where she can slow things down to work through the effect her mother s mental illness had on her childhoodIf you are looking for a fast paced plot driven book then swiftly move along The Butterfly Lampshade is a slow internal exploration of Francie s life and mind written in exuisite prose and sprinkled with some magical realism It definitely hit the spot for me The Butterfly Lampshade by Aimee Bender is a heart wrenching tale of the effects of mental illness upon a family especially a child Bender is known for mystical and domestic fiction exploring intense familial feelings In The Butterfly Lampshade the mystical is minimal and she uses the mystical as a backdrop to mental illnessThis is an aching story from the eyes of a young child who grows into a young adult trying to make sense of her world Francie is 8 when her mom suffers a severe psychotic break Francie s mom calls her sister who tries to help from afar and sends Francie to her room with a lock Yes Francie needs to lock herself into her room for her own safety And her mother locks herself in as well We know this isn t the first time her mother was a physical threat to her Yet Francie loves her mother When well her mother is loving and doting In fact Francie at age 8 realizes that the last combination of meds kept her mother in touch with reality for over a year The story is a meditation on the realities of mental illness It affects Francie in way she is concerned for her own mental health always checking for signs And so is her Aunt who takes her into her homeFrancie learns to be still to be uiet and notice everything She could be a yoga master But in Francie s case it s self preservation Yet after she moves into her aunt s home she can t shake her attention to her every thought It s a lot for a young girlBeyond the storyline the reason this was a special read for me is Bender s prose As we headed to the kitchen to wash dishes I could feel inside me the snag of an unfinished thought although I couldn t uite locate what it was I would call that a brain cramp Bender elouently states it in
#PoetryMuch Of The Novel Is #of the novel is s contemplation of young life She wants to remember and maybe to understand This isn t a fast paced novel It s uiet And it s worth itThank you to GoodRead s friend Tania for writing a review on this that piued my interest Aimee Bender left uite an impression on me with her
book The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake There are style similarities with The Butterfly Lampshade in that bothThe Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake There are style similarities with The Butterfly Lampshade in that both conjure a lush and powerful story with a touch of magical realism Aimee s wonderfully strange images seem plausible I listened to the Audiobook narrated by Julia Whelan then re read through favorite parts of the physical book The book cover is gorgeous with a smooth glossy finish The story begins with Francie in her 20 s who is determined to remember and construe very specific distressing times in her childhood Having lived with a mother who was "Grappling With Mental Illness "with mental illness entire life by age eight Francie s mother Elaine had a psychotic episod. The first novel in ten years from the author of the beloved New York Times bestseller The Particular Sadness Of Lemon Cake a luminous poignant tale of a mother a daughter mental illness and the fluctuating barrier between the mind and the world On the night her single mother is taken to a mental hospital after a psychotic episode eight year old Francie is staying with her babysitter waiting to take the train to Los Angeles to go live with her aunt and uncle There is a lovely lamp next to the couch on which she's sleeping the shade adorned with butterflies When she wakes Francie spies a dead bu. .
E so severe she needed to be hospitalized long term Arrangements were being made for Francie to go stay with her Aunt Minn Uncle Stan and their newborn child Vicky later Vicky and Francie become very close but first Francie spent the night at her babysitter s house for the weekend A time to rememberThere were three specific occurrences in young Francie s life that she now an adult explores examines obsessively observes and reflects earnestly Disarming emotionally the grown up Francie sits uietly in an actual memory tent compelled to make sense of those events and how they impacted her life She wrestles with old memories their significance and what they say about her place in the world This is a powerful novel dealing with mental illness The scenes set in Francie s past shine with intensity of childhood perception the way physical objects can take on an otherworldly power Here s a sample part of a dialogue while driving in a car bittersweet many priceless pages continue on and on between the babysitter Shrina and 8 year old Francie Do you like the radio It s okay I know this must be so confusing Francie Is this your carYesIt s green It is I like green Do you always drive his carI do Do you like itI doI m glad That s my lucky troll We will have a couple of good days of ust you and me before the train ride It s Friday Weekend ahead I know a great pancake place for tomorrow morning Do you like pancakesYes We ll get in line early They have the most amazing syrup It s a kind of special berry you know those marionberries Marionberry They re those really long blackberries so long and skinny like someone pulled a blackberry and stretched itDelicious And we will talk to your aunt and uncle every day okayMy momShe can t talk to you PostgreSQL Server Programming - Second Edition just yet As soon as she is better and she can talk you will definitely talk to her That s the glove compartment Can I open it It s messy in there You don t usually sit in the front do you What s this Just Advil Yeah that should stay there I probably should ve put you in the back but it s so messy too Would you rather sit in the back NoSorry that sust an old fork I don t know why it s there ShrinaYesWhen do I goSunday Sunday morningAnd we ll I talk to my mom thenNot yet Jumping ahead inside the house nowThis is the living room Francie This is the kitchen It s really small Up there is the loft I sleep up there Can you see the bedYesAre you hungryNoI might have some cookies Do you like cookiesIs this your lamp The butterfly lamp Do you like itYes What do you do at home most days when you come home from school Play cards maybe Cards I don t think I have cards I like the lamp I m so glad My mother got it for me when I was a little girl Here let me turn it on The butterflies are so red Aren t theyAnd golden Did she make the lampMy mother I believe she bought it in a department store Did your uncle say he ll stay at the hospital with the baby tonightWhat is the name of the storeI don t know probably Robinson s She used to really like Robinson sWhyYou want to see where my mother bought the lampYes Why Frances I like it That s so nice of you I ll tell my mother She ll be very pleased What do you like about itThe butterflies on itYou want one of your own Yes This was years and years ago I mean I don t know if they have them any I don t even think Robinson s exists any Does it I don t know if they have them any I don t even think Robinson s exists any Does it you ll be sleeping on the couch You can sleep right next to it Here Shrina when I go can I take the lampYou ll have a brand new cousin Wow You will be such an amazing help to her Can I take it with meSorry take what with youThe lamp Take the lamp You mean with you on the train I could put it in a box Oh gosh I m so sorry Francie It s Integrity Restored: Helping Catholic Families Win the Battle Against Pornography just it s a gift from my childhood I feel like I should keep it That s okay I m sorry I should probablyust give it to you OkayBut it s like the only thing from a certain time from when my parents divorced Just it s special to me I m so glad you like it You can visit it anytimethere are a couple pages of this dialogueShrina s eyes tear up As the reader we soooo understand A
#Butterfly Matching The Ones On #matching the ones on lampshade "Appears Floating In Francie "floating in Francie water glass A beetle from a drawing on a school worksheet shows up in a backpack And three roses matching the ones on a friends curtain appear on the floor Francie takes them Aimee Bender tells this story going back and forth between adult Francie and childhood episodes that weighed heavily on her We are all locked in rooms in different ways and part of growing up is finding different kinds of keys and meeting the people who will help free you A little uirkywith captivating imperfect characters who one moment made me laugh and in the next pierced my heart 45 stars What would I doYou would cry she saysAnd what would you doShe looks at me with surprise Honey she says I would stop disclaimer I received an advanced copy of this book from NetGalley and the publisher in exchange for review consideration All of the opinions presented below are my own uotes have been taken from the advanced copy and are subject to change upon publicationAt its core this feels like a book about processing trauma through fantasy In theory it sounds like something I would enjoy but I The Taste of Night (Signs of the Zodiac, just found the execution lacking While highly readable I managed to get through this in a single day Iust. Tterfly exactly matching the ones on the lamp floating in a glass of water She drinks it before the babysitter can seeTwenty years later Francie is compelled to make sense of that moment and two other incidents her discovery of a desiccated beetle from a school paper and a bouuet of dried roses from some curtains Her recall is exact she is sure these things happened But despite her certainty she wrestles with the hold these memories maintain over her and what they say about her own place in the world As Francie conjures her past and reduces her engagement with the world to a bare minimum she