Butterfly on the Storm
By Walter Lucius
A young boy is the victim of a brutal hit and run. Two bodies are found in a burnt-out car nearby. Farah knows there is something more going on but finding out may drag her back into a past she barely escaped from.
Butterfly on the Storm was definitely a case of not judging a book by it’s cover. The blurb made it sound like it was going to be a good read and it really wasn’t. I persevered to the end of the book but it left me feeling like I had wasted precious reading time. It had a lot of potential but it left me feeling a bit meh.
The beginning was promising, it began with a young boy running through the woods trying to escape from someone. As he is running he sees some lights coming towards him and he is hit by a car. Shortly after this two bodies are discovered in a burnt-out car nearby.
Danielle is the attending doctor at the scene and takes him under her wing but with her own baggage will she help or hinder him.
In the meantime, Farah Hafez is about to compete in a martial arts competition. She is Afghani by birth but has lived in Amsterdam since a young age and considered herself to be Dutch. The martial art she is practicing is something that was taught to her by her father who was killed before she and her mother fled her homeland.
This and other parts of the story surrounding her homeland and it’s culture were fascinating for me. Likewise the other parts of the story were mostly interesting as well but together they were just a bit too much and didn’t seem to mesh for me.
Whilst Farah is competing in this competition Farah badly injures her opponent and goes to the hospital afterwards to check she is ok. Whilst there she sees the boy and recognises that he is speaking the language of her homeland.
Unwittingly Farah becomes embroiled in a tale of corruption which could ultimately put her life in danger. Something about the boy speaks to her though and she knows as a journalist she cannot let it go.
As detectives Diba and Calvino dig deeper into the case so too does Farah. She helps the detectives by telling them that she believes the boy was involved in a practice of her homeland called Bacha Bazi.
“Boys with dirt-poor parents sell them to a warlord for a couple of hundred dollars. Boys dressed as exotic female dancers, but intended first and foremost as bedfellows for dirty old men.”
As the case unwinds so too do the barriers keeping away Farah’s past.
Like I said it sounds good but the reality was a bit of a let-down.
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