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The Truth About Butterflies: A Memoir [Kindle Edition]

Nancy Stephan
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (291 customer reviews)

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Book Description

They belong to each other, Nancy and Nicole--mother and daughter. They're two halves of a whole, two facets of the same breath--until the day Nicole exhales. . . and never inhales again.

After the death of her daughter, and quickly losing her own battle with grief, Nancy decides to move from the house she can no longer bear to live in. While packing, she comes across a box in the attic. Inside this box, Nancy uncovers treasures she didn't know existed and evidence that her and her daughter's lives had been more divinely entwined than she could've imagined.

The Truth About Butterflies is a true story of grief, hope, and transformation, and a single enduring truth: Life cannot be restrained by death.

*Once you've read the book, meet the people who make up Nancy's story. Scroll down and visit her Amazon author page or watch the video on YouTube, "Meet the Characters: The Truth About Butterflies"

Editorial Reviews


Nancy Stephan was named Georgia Author of the Year at the 48th annual Georgia Author of the Year Awards Banquet. Stephan's book, "The Truth About Butterflies", won in the "Memoir" category. 105 authors were nominated in 12 categories. 

The GAYA (Georgia Author of the Year Award) has the distinction of being the oldest literary awards in the Southeastern United States. The Awards have grown in prestige and participation since its inception in 1964 by the Dixie Council of Authors and Journalists.

From the Author

"Thank you" to all who've read my story. I hope you've found something of value within its pages.

Product Details

  • File Size: 487 KB
  • Print Length: 228 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Rum & Baker; First (Amended) edition (August 2, 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B005FIT03A
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #232 Free in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Free in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
47 of 47 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Heart wrenching but also heartwarming. A must read! April 22, 2012
By jangar
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
What can I say that hasn't already been said by other reviewers? It touched my heart, made me cry, made me think, and left a lasting impression on me. I read it in one sitting...I had to. I just couldn't put it down. Every mother and every daughter should read this book. I'd like to thank the author for sharing her and her daughters stories. As a daughter with diabetes, raised by a single mother with whom I'm very close to, it affected me deeply, and for that I am grateful.
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39 of 41 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Memoir Well Worth Reading July 17, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I found Nancy Stephan's book to be eloquently written from the heart and thoroughly appreciated the read. She is a gifted storyteller who poignantly shared her journey through some of her childhood struggles which involved losing her mother when she was only eight and being placed in foster care, becoming a mother herself at fifteen, and tending that child through uncontrolled diabetes that eventually claimed her life in early adulthood. I liked her writing style and found her introspection and honesty appealing. While not exactly a book with a happy ending, it is a testament to her love and strength that I found admirable. Definitely a recommended read.
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81 of 93 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Subject Matter was difficult for me October 11, 2011
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I didn't love this book, but it wasn't anything the author did. I read books because I want happy endings and an escape from real life. This book was the real life that I am hiding from. The story was well written, and it was easy to read...the topic was the difficult part for me.

This is a story about a mother who was grieving the loss of her only child. Nancy's daughter, Nicole had been suffering from juvenile diabetes since age 8. The story begins while Nancy is making preparations to move Nicole to a hospice. Nancy begins to open up to the reader what a typical day in her life was like. The hospital trips, the talks with her daughter, her fears and her faith that GOD can heal and restore her only daughter to her. It was sad, yet gripping. It was honest, yet brutal at times. It was painful, yet encouraging.

This book felt like how I would imagine watching a woman trying not to drown (I've never actually seen anyone drown) and actually surviving. It was hard for me as a new mother but I was amazed at her faith in God. I recommend this book to anyone who has faced a loss or tragedy and they need someone to let them know that they will make it. Sometimes you need to hear that and I think this book is one of those encouraging voices.

The parts of the story that I really enjoyed was learning of her upbringing. I found myself laughing when her friend told her that she wasn't black or white, she was a "mixperado". Kids have such cute ways of looking that the world. I liked her foster mother, Erma Lee. She really handled Nancy with the best care she could, given what she had. I could imagine people talking with the southern drawl and dilect that would lead to the pronounciation of Cirrhosis as "sir-roaches".
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I would give it 6 stars if I could! June 23, 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I was immediately captivated by this book and also could not put it down. I read it straight through. It was heartbreaking...and wonderful. The author writes like she is sitting right next to you in your kitchen, talking. All I can say is...just read it. Read it.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Incredible story October 7, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I honestly thought this book was incredible. There is something so warm and real about it, as if I was sitting down with the author Nancy and she was telling me her story over tea, and even as the daylight faded, more tea was poured and the story continued, because I wanted to hear more about her late daughter Nicole. And by the end, as sad as the story is, I am smiling with her and I feel as though I have met Nicole and I love her too.

This story is told with such grace that, even for those with different or no spiritual beliefs, the author's faith in God is simply part of the story and is endearing rather than offensive.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A MUST READ!!!!!!! You will not be disappointed. July 23, 2012
I am moved by this story completely! I cannot believe it's not legendary and more world renowned. This is a TRUE story. About a mother and daughter fighting the fight of their lives, with the medical industry. In infuriates me how the medical system works, and yet I am not surprised at all, because of all of my experience with it. I am also sickened by the legal system this poor girl endured while she was almost dying. My heart aches for this woman and her daughter. She is a single mother, and had such a hard life. How she lived through it all, amazes me and encourages me to no end. Any person who is sick, who knows someone is sick, or any person at all, should definitely read this one. It's worth every cent. It will gratify your own life and health. It will keep you from putting it down. Even tho it captured my heart, I loved this book. I needed to read it. It's a MUST read!
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Intense Story June 21, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Overall a good book. It kind of got bogged down there in the middle but I'm glad I read it.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Heartwarming May 1, 2012
By Mel
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This was a very heart warming book. I laughed and cried several times! I appreciate the honesty and openness that the author used in sharing her story with us.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Sad story but ended on a reasonably good note.
Published 6 hours ago by Judith Mueller
3.0 out of 5 stars Okay
This a book by a mother mourning her daughter's death due to a long illness. It is sincere and heartfelt, although not the work of a skilled writer. Read more
Published 1 day ago by Chris Cennedy
5.0 out of 5 stars Quite Nice
Even for one as agnostic as I, I enjoyed this book very much. I have had some recent life experiences which made this memoir read a hopeful, although teary, read.
Published 2 days ago by Cecelia Rebele
4.0 out of 5 stars Good read
The story about a young single mother and her struggles with her severely ill and dying daughter and how she coped
Published 1 month ago by Jan Paul
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Beautiful and memorable story.
Published 2 months ago by mj.ramirez
4.0 out of 5 stars So sweet.
This is a beautiful memoir honoring the life and love of a mother and daughter. Also a huge testimony of faith and hope in God's providence.
Published 2 months ago by caroline s. rhodes
2.0 out of 5 stars was misprinted?
I could not follow the second half of it. It was like starting another book.
Published 4 months ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Excellent read
Published 5 months ago by rita
4.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful Story
Beautifully written and a very enriching read. I was prepared with tissues in hand when I began this book. Read more
Published 6 months ago by Crazyreader
5.0 out of 5 stars very good
Thank you for sharing such intimate feelings. Hard to imagine life without your child. I have a better understanding of what some friends are dealing with.
Published 6 months ago by Deborah L. Christian
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More About the Author

Nancy Stephan is the author of "The Truth About Butterflies: A Memoir" which earned the Atlanta resident a 2012 Georgia Author of the Year Award. She holds a master's degree in creative writing from Kennesaw State University and is a Writing Center supervisor for the University System of Georgia. "A Gary Girl's Guide to Good" is Nancy's most recent work and her first collection of poetry.

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