In the Time of the Butterflies by Julia AlvarezSet during the waning days of the Trujillo dictatorship in the Dominican Republic in 1960, this extraordinary novel tells the story of the Mirabal sisters, three young wives and mothers who are assassinated after visiting their jailed husbands.
From the author of How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents comes this tale of courage and sisterhood set in the Dominican Republic during the rise of the Trujillo dictatorship. A skillful blend of fact and fiction, In the Time of the Butterflies is inspired by the true story of the three Mirabal sisters who, in 1960, were murdered for their part in an underground plot to overthrow the government. Alvarez breathes life into these historical figures--known as las mariposas, or the butterflies, in the underground--as she imagines their teenage years, their gradual involvement with the revolution, and their terror as their dissentience is uncovered.
Alvarezs controlled writing perfectly captures the mounting tension as the butterflies near their horrific end. The novel begins with the recollections of Dede, the fourth and surviving sister, who fears abandoning her routines and her husband to join the movement. Alvarez also offers the perspectives of the other sisters: brave and outspoken Minerva, the familys political ringleader; pious Patria, who forsakes her faith to join her sisters after witnessing the atrocities of the tyranny; and the baby sister, sensitive Maria Teresa, who, in a series of diaries, chronicles her allegiance to Minerva and the physical and spiritual anguish of prison life.
In the Time of the Butterflies is an American Library Association Notable Book and a 1995 National Book Critics Circle Award nominee.
Julia Alvarez - In the Time of the Butterflies: 25th Anniversary Edition
And that may be so in that they brought to the surface important conversations around the themes of heroism, feminism, country, courage, patriotism, and identity—this last one especially so for the millions of girls who read her books. And yet, in all the emotion around the political and social gifts of this novel, there is one reason for its impact and one reason only, and that reason is artistic: it is first and foremost a great story, richly, gracefully told.
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Julia Alvarez is a novelist, poet, essayist, National Endowment for the Arts creative writing fellow, and cofounder with her husband of a coffee farm and literacy center in the Dominican Republic, her home until she was ten. In the first 13 years of her adult life, she had over 15 addresses: she taught children in Kentucky, bilingual students in Delaware, and senior citizens in New Hampshire. She published her first novel at the age of 41 and has since gone on to receive an F. Her second novel, In the Time of the Butterflies , is based on the real story of the four Mirabal sisters of the Dominican Republic, three of whom became symbols of resistance after being murdered at the order of the dictator Rafael Trujillo. Julia Alvarez's In the Time of the Butterflies is a work of historical fiction based on the lives of the four Mirabal sisters, who participated in underground efforts to topple Rafael Leonidas Trujillo's three-decade-long dictatorial regime in the Dominican Republic. Their story haunted Alvarez, whose own family had fled the Dominican Republic just three months earlier in fear that her father's participation in the resistance would make him a target of Trujillo.
In , a few months after my family fled the dictatorship of Trujillo in the Dominican Republic, the three Mirabal sisters were brutally murdered. Founders of the underground, las Mariposas the Butterflies, their code name had inspired resistance cells throughout the country. My father had joined one of these cells, which was cracked by the SIM, the secret police, in the summer of -- the reason we were forced to flee. This novel tells the Mirabal story through the lens of fiction. Needless to say, this book is one I felt compelled to write. I'd love it if we began a tradition of wearing a butterfly on that day!
Start by marking “In the Time of the Butterflies” as Want to Read: Set during the waning days of the Trujillo dictatorship in the Dominican Republic in , this extraordinary novel tells the story of the Mirabal sisters, three young wives and mothers who are assassinated after.
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The novel takes place in the Dominican Republic, both in and under the Trujillo regime. Patria is the most religious sister, and she wants to become a nun until she discovers her own sexuality. She marries a farmer named Pedrito at age sixteen, and has a son Nelson and a daughter Noris , but her next baby is stillborn. This shakes her faith, and she is especially affected by a portrait of Trujillo located next to one of Jesus. She slaps him, and the Mirabals leave. There she meets Manolo another revolutionary and gets married. She eventually gets Trujillo to pardon Nelson.