By the international bestselling author of How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents and Afterlife, In the Time of the Butterflies, first published in 1994, is "beautiful, heartbreaking and alive ... a lyrical work of historical fiction based on the story of the Mirabal sisters, revolutionary heroes who had opposed and fought against Trujillo." (Concepción de León, New York Times)
"Alvarez helped blaze the trail for Latina authors to break into the literary mainstream, with novels like In the Time of the Butterflies and How the García Girls Lost Their Accents winning praise from critics and gracing best-seller lists across the Americas."—Francisco Cantú, The New York Times Book Review
"This Julia Alvarez classic is a must-read for anyone of Latinx descent." —Popsugar.com "A gorgeous and sensitive novel . . . A compelling story of courage, patriotism and familial devotion." —People "Shimmering . . . Valuable and necessary." —Los Angeles Times "A magnificent treasure for all cultures and all time.” —St. Petersburg Times "Alvarez does a remarkable job illustrating the ruinous effect the 30-year dictatorship had on the Dominican Republic and the very real human cost it entailed."—Cosmopolitan.com
It is November 25, 1960, and three beautiful sisters have been found near their wrecked Jeep at the bottom of a 150-foot cliff on the north coast of the Dominican Republic. The official state newspaper reports their deaths as accidental. It does not mention that a fourth sister lives. Nor does it explain that the sisters were among the leading opponents of Gen. Rafael Leónidas Trujillo’s dictatorship. It doesn’t have to. Everybody knows of Las Mariposas—the Butterflies. In this extraordinary novel, the voices of all four sisters--Minerva, Patria, María Teresa, and the survivor, Dedé--speak across the decades to tell their own stories, from secret crushes to gunrunning, and to describe the everyday horrors of life under Trujillo’s rule. Through the art and magic of Julia Alvarez’s imagination, the martyred Butterflies live again in this novel of courage and love, and the human costs of political oppression.
About the Author
Julia Alvarez left the Dominican Republic for the United States in 1960 at the age of ten. She is the author of six novels, three books of nonfiction, three collections of poetry, and eleven books for children and young adults. She has taught and mentored writers in schools and communities across America and, until her retirement in 2016, was a writer in residence at Middlebury College. Her work has garnered wide recognition, including a Latina Leader Award in Literature from the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute, the Hispanic Heritage Award in Literature, the Woman of the Year by Latina magazine, and inclusion in the New York Public Library’s program “The Hand of the Poet: Original Manuscripts by 100 Masters, from John Donne to Julia Alvarez.” In the Time of the Butterflies, with over one million copies in print, was selected by the National Endowment for the Arts for its national Big Read program, and in 2013 President Obama awarded Alvarez the National Medal of Arts in recognition of her extraordinary storytelling.
"Wonderful . . . Skillfully weaves fact and fiction, building to a gut-wrenching climax." —Newsweek
"A gorgeous and sensitive novel . . . A compelling story of courage, patriotism and familial devotion." —People
"Shimmering . . . Valuable and necessary." —Los Angeles Times
"Extraordinary." —Harper's Bazaar
"Haunting." —New York Newsday
"A poignant tale of courage and hope . . . As much an inspiration as it is a tragedy." —Ms.
"Imagination and history in sublime combination . . . Read this book for the novel it is. Read this book for the place it takes you. Read this book and take courage." —The Denver Post