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The Butterfly Garden (Five Star Expressions) Hardcover – April 15, 2005

4.2 out of 5 stars 475 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews


" . . . has all the warmth and beauty of an Amish quilt . . . a tale of love, commitment, and family ties, told with tenderness and sensitivity."
-- Susan Wiggs, New York Times bestselling author of Thee, I Love

"Answering gruff Adam Zuckerman's summons, Amish midwife Sara Lapp assumes that she is to assist in the birth of Abby Zuckerman's latest child. She arrives to find Abby dead, the baby already born, and Adam determined to give his four young daughters into her care. Spinster Sara agrees to take the girls--for a time. Then Adam is injured in a drunken fall, and Sara and the girls move in to care for him, prompting the Amish elders to insist that they marry or be shunned. The results are predictable, but it takes Adam a long time to come to terms with his reservations. A giving, intelligent heroine, a conflicted hero, and a quartet of adorable girls will charm their way into readers' hearts in this heartwarming, leisurely paced story, one of several romances featuring the Amish to hit in recent months. With a goodly amount of cultural but not necessarily religious detail, this story will appeal to historical and some inspirational fans who like their romances sexy and romantic but with a gentle, introspective touch. Blair (The Kitchen Witch) is a seasoned writer of both historical and contemporary romance; she lives in New England."
--Library Journal, April 2005 (Library Journal 20050401)

"The Butterfly Garden tells and exceptionally moving tale of life and love in a community apart from the mainstream but with humanity in common with the rest of us. Sara is totally sympathetic as a heroine; who could help but her with a feisty, yet caring and giving nature. Adam on the other hand, evokes as much or more sympathy, but you?d still like to give him a good shaking. Two characters from the past show up that test him even more. Yet, when faced with emergencies, Adam rises to true heroism. Two protagonists face many conflicts, internal and external, that give richness and suspense to The Butterfly Garden."
--Romance Reviews Today, April 2005 (Romance Reviews Today 20050401)

"The author, Annette Blair, has a real writing talent. She inserts tiny things that the reader does not immediately notice, but makes the reader come to care for the characters as if they were kin. You may need tissues nearby at some points of the story. Another award winner that I cannot recommend highly enough."
--Huntress Reviews, March 2005 (Doody Enterprises 20050301)

About the Author

Former prep-school administrator and award-winning author Annette Blair owes her theme of "Magic with Heart," to Salem, Massachusetts. The national bestseller writes single titles for Berkley Sensations and Vintage Magic Mysteries for Berkley Prime Crime. And thanks to Lachesis Publishing, her historical backlist can soon be found on an e-reader near you. In her thirty plus books, she’s explored nineteenth-century Amish Country; Regency and Victorian Britain; and madcap, modern Salem Mass, where bold women follow the Celtic faith with heart. There, she fought dragons, and fell in love with an angel. More recently, she’s solved mysteries beside Connecticut’s Mystic River. Wherever Annette landed, she thrived. An adventurer and storyteller at heart, she’s proud to be a second generation American with French Canadian roots. Annette's work has garnered multiple Romantic Times TOP PICKS, Reviewers’ Choice Awards, and HOLT Medallion nominations. A triple Golden Heart Finalist, she's also finaled in the Golden Leaf, the Lauries, the Golden Quill, and the National Readers' Choice Awards. She’s won multiple Booksellers Best Awards, LORIES Awards, Laurel Wreath, Blue Boa, Aspen Gold, RIO, Southern Magic, More than Magic, Orange Rose, Winter Rose, PRISM, Beacon, Colorado Awards of Excellence, Write Touch Readers' Choice Awards and an Orange County Book Buyer's Best Award. With Sex and the Psychic Witch, Annette took home three Anne-Bonney Readers’ Choice Awards out of four. Vampire Dragon, her third Works Like Magick novel, a "B&N Jules's Pick Must Read" and a "Night Owl 5 star TOP PICK" hit stores in April 2011. Skirting the Grave, her fourth Vintage Magic Mystery, arrived in July 2011. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 307 pages
  • Publisher: Five Star Trade; 1st edition (April 15, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1594143145
  • ISBN-13: 978-1594143144
  • Product Dimensions: 8.8 x 5.9 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (475 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,225,291 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Dear Readers,

Thank you! I'm officially a New York Times & a USA Today Bestselling Author.

Writers have many dreams for their careers, not the least of which is to have their books hit those lists. But it came as a delightful surprise, 2 days after surgery, to learn that JACOB'S RETURN, a book of my heart, hit that coveted milestone in its second release, fifteen years after the first. Many thanks to you, my wonderful readers. for making it possible. For those who are not familiar with the story, JACOB'S RETURN is a SEXY Amish Historical Romance, though no Amish writing rules existed when the book was written in the late nineteen-eighties. Now sexy Amish Historicals have become something of a trademark. My dedicated readers want the love scenes.

Meanwhile my New York Times Bestselling Mystery Series increased by one. TULLE DEATH DO US PART, my 6th Vintage Magic Mystery brought more notes and email than ever. I love hearing from you, so thank you so much. Your words delight and encourage me. Thanks too for your reviews, for telling your friends & posting your enthusiasm on social sites. Nothing is as valuable as word of mouth. Thank you for mentioning my work. A writer can't succeed alone. I could never succeed without you.

It's been nearly eight years since I left my job as a Development Director at a New England Prep School to become a full time writer, and I am still loving the heck out of it. I will admit that my knee replacement surgeries interfered with my creativity in 2013. I had one in March and one in September. Your cards, good thoughts, vibes, white light, & prayers, are much appreciated.

I didn't always know I wanted to be a writer, but I discovered Jane Eyre soon after I got my first library card. I was eleven and already giving every story a romantic spin, whether it called for one or not. In high school, I wrote romances about my friends and their boyfriends. Racy stuff for which their mothers did not thank me. That was my single true rebellion as a teen, and I'm so glad I ran with it. Because over-achieving, goody-two-shoes have no fun.

When my children were young, I jotted plot ideas on corners of envelopes, recipe cards, and such, and threw them in my nightstand. One day, I picked one and started writing. I have since journeyed to Regency England; 19th century Amish America; twenty-first century Salem, Massachusetts; Newport, Rhode Island; and Mystic, Connecticut; falling in love and solving mysteries along the way. I created a host of sassy, sexy witches who tantalize and torment the men in their lives. Hopefully, those men and women, witches and rogues alike, will make some happy magic for you.

I've re-released: The Rogues Club, a Multi-Award-Winning series of Regency Historical Romances. UNDENIABLE ROGUE, UNFORGETTABLE ROGUE, UNMISTAKABLE ROGUE & UNTAMABLE ROGUE. They're Unputdownable, as are: SEA SCOUNDREL, CAPTIVE SCOUNDREL, PROPER SCOUNDREL & HOLY SCOUNDREL.

Many of you have asked me, "What's next?" To get through a recovery that can be depressing--pain and physical therapy are a drag--I gravitated toward a Contemporary Romantic Comedy Series with a touch of Magic. It's filling my creative well, making me laugh, and keeping me working. You can expect WISHING WELL WEDDING (tentative title) in the first quarter of 2014.

Happy Reading, Happy New Year, and much love,

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I almost don't know what to say about this book. It was intriguing, yes, and nearly impossible to put down. It was....steamy, to say the very least. Prior to this, I thought Sarah Price wrote steamy Amish books, but this one makes her seem like a children's author in that sense. (still love her books!) Depending on the reader, that can be a good or a bad thing. Although all of the physical contact was in the context of marriage, it was too much for me personally.
I almost felt like the Amish theme was an afterthought. There certainly did not seem to be much that was Amish about this book, certainly not the wholesome, God-fearing, devoted Amish that I am used to reading about in this genre. I really wish there had not been so much swearing. (both words written out, and references to the characters cursing) I understand there can be great grief and heartache, and I can appreciate what others have said about this book being having real characters with real, raw emotion. The story itself could have stood so well on its own, without all the sex stuff and cursing. I think this just went too far.
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Format: Hardcover
The story begins in Walnut Creek, Ohio, 1883. Amishwoman Sara Lapp, has all but been shunned for studying with "the English" local doctor, Dr. Jordan Marks, to become a midwife. After months of waiting, she is called to tend the birth of her best friend, Abby. However, upon arriving, Sara finds Abby has already died in childbirth. Abby's husband, "Mad" Adam Zuckerman, did not want Sara to help Abby deliver the baby. He wants Sara to take his four daughters, including the new born, home with her to raise.

Adam is a self-appointed outcast. He keeps everyone at a distance. He dares not love anyone, including Abby and his children. Adam's childhood had been far from happy. In fact, Adam never recalls smiling even once in his entire life. Adam fears that he has too much of his father in him and he cannot have his children around him without Abby to protect them should his father's blood prove true. It is best for him, and his children, that they be raised with someone who could give them the love they so desperately need. Someone like Sara.

When a drunken Adam falls from a barn loft Sara moves in to tend him, and she brings his girls. Then the Bishop and the Elders take a stand. They must marry or they, and the children, would be shunned. Sara knows there is something good in Adam. There has to be or Abby would never have fallen in love with him and married him. Sara has hope of drawing it out of him. She hopes to heal him. If not, she will love and raise the children as her own.

Unexepected help, and trouble, arrives when Lena (Adam's mother) and Emma (Adam's quiet sister) knock on the door. Adam has believes them to have died long ago, another lie from his father. Now Sara has help with the children and can do her midwife duties without worrying about the children.
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The Butterfly Garden is soft porn! Not what I was expecting. I expected an Amish story of love and spiritual growth. There was little if any mention of God and spiritual growth through the story. This is a story of a sexual relationship and how each person had to overcome their own past history in order to be free and have a full sexual relationship. The descriptions of the sexual acts were over the top and fell into the category of porn. This should be titled 50 shades of Amish Gray.
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Format: Kindle Edition
I have read other Amish romances, but none left me feeling the way Annette Blair's Butterfly Garden did. Most other Amish stories have no sexual content and left me thinking the Amish culture really does not feel any normal sexual feelings like most people. Blair showed me a different side to that belief with her heroine, Sara. Sara does not demonstrate the usual attitude of most Amish women. She doesn't mind speaking her feelings, even if it goes against what others in the order feel and is somewhat against the rules of the order. As Sara agrees to keep a couple's four daughters, between 4 years of age and newborn, she vows to somehow help the father, Mad Adam, realize he loves his girls, sensing somehow that he does. Butterfly Garden is the story of Sarah's journey to accomplish that through the characters' emotions.

Blair demonstrates she holds a solid grasp of human emotions in telling the story of Adam Zuckerman and his denial of his feelings for his daughters. She describes Adam beginning to have feelings for Sara and how he tries to deny these feelings. At first he realizes he is sexually attracted to Sara in a way that he never felt for his wife Abby. Then he realizes he likes having Sara around. As Blair takes you through the story, Sara begins to feel a sexual attraction to Adam, her feelings eventually turning to love. As Sara is patient with Adam, he begins to see how love should really feel. Through these experiences, the hero and heroine are drawn closer and closer physically and emotionally.

I loved the descriptive way Blair led me through all the emotions that both Adam and Sara felt during their time spent together.
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