When hearing the title or seeing the orange butterfly, I always get the idea that this book is some teeny-bopper love story. It wasn't. This book has been making waves and I just had to see what it's about for my sake. I was entranced. I was thrilled. I was melancholic. I was in love. I was hopeful. I was devastated. It made me feel too much and that's why it deserves the Michael Printz award/stamp.
Gemma Toombs, her mom and her dad are in Bangkok Airport. They are about to catch their next flight to their next destination. It's a school vacation and they're traveling the world to buy and sell paintings. Her mom is a curator while her dad is a stockbroker. They come from London.
Gemma decides to stray away from her parents for a while to get coffee. In the small coffee shop at the airport, she notices this attractive-looking guy who's been following her around in their recent trips. He has this air of familiarity in him but she can't really point out what it is.
When she looks for money in her purse, she realizes that she's short then the mystery guy volunteers to pay for it. They sit together at the same table and talked. The guy's name is 'Ty'.
Our protagonist gets dizzy. Ty leads her around the airport. There are several happenings in between; Ty changed her clothes, he feeds her this cream-filled chocolates, she was dragged around in different airports and then she was zipped and locked inside a suitcase.
When she regains consciousness, she realizes she's in the middle of a red desert where there's no civilization. She immediately develops this huge amount of hatred towards her captor, Ty.
She realizes she's in Australia. She tried to escape several times and Ty never fails to come to her rescue.
Ty addresses his love for her. Gemma is disgusted and confused.
One day she gets bitten by a snake and the only way for her to survive is to get to civilization.
If you don't want to be genuinely sad for no reason but the story of this book, don't read this.
There's always this effect of being emotionally invested when we encounter beautiful broken characters. I have got the chills from this Tyler MacFarlane dude, you know! But like Gemma, I loved him too. I was ripped. I don't know if I like him better to be saved or locked up. Fortunately, the heroine did the right thing. The author did the right thing with this story!
It made me think who was really crazy. If a person is brought up in a certain way and was made to think like he does from experience, I don't really consider them to be crazy. I think Gemma was the crazy one, she always felt like she needed to go when going wasn't really a choice. She could have been smarter from the very start and used his feelings against him. I don't really blame her anyway.
He loved her too much that he kept her for himself but he loved her enough to let her live even if it meant letting her go and sacrificing his freedom.
The part where I'm totally decided that this book is unfathomably too good for any adjective:
"But I'll tell them of your other side too. The side I saw sometimes when you spoke softly to the camel and when you gently touched the leaves of the saltbush; only taking what you needed. And the times you rescued me. I will tell them how you chose prison rather than let me die. Because you did, didn't you? You knew, right from when that snake bit me it was all over. When I asked you to stay with me on the plane, you did it knowing you were turning yourself in. And I am grateful, Ty, don't get me wrong. But I gave up my life for you too, once... back in Bangkok Airport. And I had no choice.