Friday, February 20, 2009

The Girl Who Threw Butterflies Mick Cochrane

The Girl Who Threw Butterflies by Mick Cochrane Molly is the only girl trying out for the eighth grade baseball team. Her school has a softball team, but Molly wants to play baseball, the game she used to play with her dad. Six months earlier Molly's dad died in a car accident. Molly doesn't want to be the fragile girl any more she wants to pitch. This novel isn't about Molly being perfect on the mound though she does blow some boys away. Its about a girl who wants to find a lost piece of herself. Molly's dad taught her a tricky pitch the knuckleball and it helps her make the team. The knuckleball is unpredictable, most catchers are wary it. All knuckle throwers have an assigned catcher. Its a personal and private relationship. Molly's catcher is Lonnie. He doesn't complain when the knuckler hits him in the shins or skips past him. Off the field the two do the getting to know you dance. After practice Molly and Lonnie walk home together, gradually they begin to share their secrets. Throughout the book Molly remembers the good things about her dad, but she also question if his death was really an accident, depression is mentioned. This story line is merely hinted at so some young readers may miss it but its definitely there. Molly's best friend Celia is there from the beginning supporting and listening. Cochrane does an excellent job with Molly's voice, she comes across has the age shes suppose to be. The Girl Who Threw Butterflies was a very enjoyable read filled moments I really loved. Ages 10up
Time to share

Molly enjoyed the satisfying pop the ball made in Lonnie's mitt and the little puff of dust that wafted from it. It was a pressure situation and all that, but that little puff of dust just seemed beautiful all by itself. It was something that even Coach V, as meticulous a scorekeeper as he was, had no symbol for. You'd have to write a poem about it, a haiku maybe.


susan said...

Almost didn't read this post but I thought better of it given the source. You didn't disappoint. Adding this to my multiple page wish list and teetering tbr. :-)

James Preller said...

Yes, this book sounds good. I read a nice interview with the author and liked him.

James Preller

James Preller said...

I just wanted to add a thought: I wonder if he might have missed the market here, by focusing on an 8th grade girl. Due to the growing popularity of girls softball, I just don't see ANY girls at that age playing hardball (while the softball fields are crowded with athletic, competitive girls teams). In my Little League, serving 750 families, it's extremely rare to see a girl playing at the Majors level, which is primarily ages 11-12. Maybe one comes along every three years, on average. I'll be curious about how well this book sells. In my book, SIX INNINGS, I wanted to include a girl on one of the rosters, if only from a marketing standpoint, but it just wasn't true to the baseball world as I knew it. Doesn't mean it can't happen, I'm just saying.

That said: I understand the book is very good, well-written, and I hope it's a great success.

James Preller

Doret said...

In the back jacket flap, the author explains why he decided to write about a girl who plays baseball its actually very interesting almost mentioned it in my post. Maybe more girls aren't playing hardball at that age because they are told they can't anymore. I think girls who play softball will still relate to the character. And lets not forget the girls who simply enjoy watching baseball. I just hope the readers find the book. I think the wonderful cover choice will help.

Dkimlaw said...

What kind of book is this, it's not the one about the girl who hurt her or had an accident with a baseball bat, I think it's a satire of what happens in the minds of crazy people.