A Butterfly Called Hope

School Library Journal - December 2013

PreS-Gr 2–A little girl is in her mother’s garden when she spies an unusual caterpillar. Her mother takes her and the insect to a butterfly center where they discover that their caterpillar will turn into a monarch butterfly. Taking the creature home, the girl is able to observe what happens during its life cycle. Monroe does an excellent job using appropriate scientific vocabulary along with dialogue to keep readers interested. The text is large and bold, making it accessible to emerging readers. There is also limited text on each page, which keeps the book from being too long for a read-aloud. The photographs are clear and help delineate the action, making it equally useful in elementary classrooms or with families exploring the subject. There is a “For Creative Minds” section that also helps extend the text; it includes a diagram of the butterfly’s life cycle, vocabulary matching, and additional facts about monarchs.–Susan E. Murray, formerly at Glendale Public Library, AZ

Booklist - November 2013

A girl finds a “bright yellow and black bug” or, as her mother explains, a caterpillar. Determined to raise it herself, the girl makes a home for it in a terrarium, lining the floor with paper towels and adding fresh milkweed daily. She watches it change from caterpillar to chrysalis to butterfly. After the mother explains why they must set it free, the girl gives it her own name, Hope, and releases it. The back matter includes a word-and-picture matching game, tips on raising monarchs, and a full-page presentation explaining the generations and migrations of monarchs within a 12-month period. While the fictional story is a bit stiff, the large-print text is accessible to young readers. Clear, colorful photos offer good views of the caterpillar, chrysalis, and butterfly. While there are many books available on monarch butterfly development, this one targets a younger audience than most.

Science Books and Films-March 2014

In general, children enjoy interacting with others, including various animals. A Butterfly Called Hope provides an armchair opportunity for the reader to share in the stages of development for monarch butterflies. For young nonreaders the pictures are ample. Also, the vocabulary for the most part is satisfactory, both for adult and child readers. There is a four page section near the end of the book to encourage further study. Perhaps a pronunciation guide would have been helpful for some words. (Also, the discussion about frass (butterfly defecation) might seem too frank for some adults to want to share with very young users of the book.) Behavioral, ethological, studies can be followed by both adults and children. If one wants to care for caterpillars there is a useful section with stage by stage observations for one to make while hopefully personally enjoying monarch or other butterflies. --Kathryn Stanley Podwall, Nassau Community College, Garden City, NY

East Tennesse Medical News - August 2013

As a gifted storyteller, New York Times bestselling author Mary Alice Monroe beautifully parallels human relationships with nature. Now, “Monroe’s Monarch,” better-known as A Butterfly Called Hope, arrives, as the monarch butterfly population is declining, to entrance, educate and capture future conservationists.

Once this little book becomes part of your home or classroom collection, you will also want to be on the lookout for milkweed and caterpillars to house and watch your own monarch arrive from its chrysalis, and Monroe tells you how.

Just as she beautifully writes, while also teaching in her adult novel The Butterfly’s Daughter, Monroe emerges with the same inner spirit and passion in her latest children’s book, A Butterfly Called Hope from Arbordale Publishing. Teaming with award-winning photographer Barbara Bergwerf and co-author Linda Love, Monroe’s second children’s book displays the miracle of transformation in a book that can be shared with children and adults alike—milkweed required!
From actively raising her own monarch butterflies, researching and following them to their wintering sanctuaries in the mountains of Mexico, Monroe shares additional, educational details “for the creative minds” in the back of the book for more in-depth study. Even vocabulary words from the life cycle are included.

 My adult reading student learned all about the loggerhead sea turtle in Monroe’s first children’s book, Turtle Summer. I know A Butterfly Called Hope will also provide shared lessons on the monarch to read, enjoy and to treasure.
-Leigh Anne W. Hoover - Author & Journalist, Reading with Ralph

Kids Book Review - November 2013

I think this looks like a happy book. It’s a girl seeing a butterfly. I love butterflies. I like going to the butterfly garden. The butterfly called Hope is a monarch butterfly. I see a caterpillar and I think her name would be Hope. She is going to become a butterfly. The girl is named Hope. The girl and her mother go to see Nana Butterfly. She is learning how to take care of the caterpillar. The cocoon is going to be a butterfly! There are a lot of facts at the end of this book like some facts about monarch generations and migrations. My favorite part is when the caterpillar turned into a butterfly. I pretended to be a butterfly. I said, “Hi, Caterpillar named Hope. How are you doing? I will put you in a tree because then you will go in a cocoon and then you will become a butterfly.” The illustrations in this book are photographs. They make the story look real. I like the part that says, “My monarch opens her wings in the sun, fluttering in joy.” Children who like butterflies will love this book!
-Susan Faith, Age 5

ACS Readers Haven Reviews - December 2013

The author, Mary Alice Monroe, has written a really good book that entertains and educates at the same time. The photography of Barbara J. Bergwerf is outstanding. This is a book to highly recommend to parents, schools, and libraries. 

Heck of a Bunch - September 2013

With realistic photographs, A Butterfly Called Hope tells of the life cycle of a butterfly. Children can see up-close illustrations of the cycle when a young girl named Hope captures a caterpillar in a jar and keeps it to see how the bug turns into a butterfly. It is an interesting story that will engage children and help them learn the progression. The 'For Creative Minds' section at the end of the book further helps children learn monarch life cycle sequencing, monarch generations and migrations, and how to raise monarchs. There's also a butterfly vocabulary matching activity.

Feathered Quill Book Reviews - October 2013

This is a fascinating tale of the life cycle stages of a monarch butterfly. Of course this is also the special story of what the little girl decided to name her monarch when it was time to set it free. The entire story is accompanied by photographs that relate the life cycle of the monarch. The centerfold has eight amazing pictures that show the new monarch emerging from its chrysalis. Newly independent readers can tackle this book with some assistance. The text is large and bold and is generously illustrated with full-color photographs. In the back of the book are additional activities, including downloadable instructional materials on the publisher’s website. This would be an excellent read and discuss book in the homeschool or classroom setting.

Quill says: If you are doing a module on life cycles in the classroom, this is an excellent book to consider!

Go Explore Nature - October 2013

Watch as a caterpillar transforms into a chrysalis and then emerges as a monarch butterfly. Color photographs tell the story of one girl’s experience raising a butterfly and setting it free.

Homeschool Book Review Blog - October 2013

Butterflies are gorgeous creatures, and kids will enjoy learning about them in this book.

My MC Books - October 2013

When a little girl called Hope spotted a bright yellow and black bug in her mom’s garden on a  milkweed leaf she called to her mother wanting to know if the bug will bite, sting me or make me sick?. Her mom told her not to be afraid that it wouldn’t hurt her and that the bug is a caterpillar which will later grow to become a beautiful butterfly. And when it did she named the Monarch butterfly Hope.

Explore the activities in the back of the book. Learn about the Monarch life cycle sequencing, the butterfly vocabulary matching activity, their generations and migrations and raising monarchs.

Photographs taken by Barbara Bergwerf capture the different stages of the caterpillar to a butterfly.  I recommend this book for classroom teaching and to children who loves butterflies.

Goodreads Reviewer Kendra - November 2013

I really enjoyed this book with it's beautiful text as well as really neat pictures. My two year old daughter loved looking at the pictures throughout the book. Also as a Student teacher I enjoyed that it went through the steps of life cycle of the butterfly and really neat activities in the back of the book. I am hoping to use this book to help teach the life cycles of a butterfly to third graders this year.

Good Books for Kids Lists - November 2013

Monarch butterfly resource list for K-2nd Grade

Tif Talks Books-March 2014

Butterfly Called Hope follows the life of a butterfly, from a small egg to a caterpillar and eventually, a beautiful butterfly.  This story reminds me of our visits to a local butterfly house.  Accompanied by photographs, we get to experience a little bit of a favorite destination in the comfort of our own home.