A feminist Man Called Ove meets Graeme Simsion’s The Rosie Project in this rollicking tale of a grumpy introvert, her astonishing lack of social conduct and empirical data-driven approach to people and relationships.
Is there such a thing as an anti-social butterfly? If there were, entomologist Greta Oto would know about it—and totally relate. Greta far prefers the company of bugs to humans, and that’s okay, because people don’t seem to like her all that much anyway, with the exception of her twin brother, Danny, though they’ve recently had a falling out. So when she lands a research gig in the rainforest, sh leaves it all behind.
But when Greta learns that Danny has suffered an aneurysm and is now hospitalized, she abandons her research and hurries home to the middle of nowhere America to be there for her brother. But there’s only so much she can do, and unfortunately just like insects, humans don’t stay cooped up in their hives either–they buzz about and… socialize. Coming home means confronting all that she left behind, including her lousy soon-to-be sister-in-law, her estranged mother, and her ex-boyfriend Brandon who has conveniently found a new non-lab-exclusive partner with shiny hair, perfect teeth, and can actually remember the names of the people she meets right away. Being that Brandon runs the only butterfly conservatory in town, and her dissertation is now in jeopardy, taking that job, being back home, it’s all creating chaos of Greta’s perfectly catalogued and compartmentalized world.
The Butterfly Effect is an honest tale of self-discovery, about the behavior of bugs (and people), how they can be altered by high-pressure climates, confused by breakdowns in communication, and most importantly, how they can rehabilitate themselves and each other.
“Delightfully off-kilter…[Lovably-flawed] Greta’s comically critical point of view interrogates midwestern norms and gendered stereotypes in a story that explores the legacy of familial dysfunction. Come for the butterflies, and stay for Mans McKenny’s acerbic authorial eye which examines the complexities of the Midwest and its quiet dramas.”
—Rachel Yoder, award-winning author of Nightbitch