Thursday, May 13, 2010

Book Review - The Butterfly Garden by Chip St. Clair

One of America's Most Fascinating True Crime Cases

Fear rocked Chip St. Clair's world. As a boy, he never knew what would set his father off--maybe the ice cubes had melted in his glass of Tab, maybe dinner was overcooked or undercooked or the gravy was too runny. Regardless, the beatings always came. As did the twisted games of cat and mouse--being thrown from a rowboat into frigid Lake Michigan, the middle-of-the-night moves to different states, or being left to dangle over a ten-story balcony while his father watched from inside. But one fateful night when the police answered the call, the truth came to light from the shadows, sparking national headlines: Chip St. Clair's entire life--his name, even his date of birth--had been a lie, and the man he called 'Dad' was an impostor, an escaped child killer who had been on the run for over two decades. The stunning revelation would send one of America's Most Wanted to justice and another on a quest for his true identity.

With chilling detail and a riveting, lyrical narrative, The Butterfly Garden reveals St. Clair's struggle to piece together his haunted past before it consumes him and shares his inspiring metamorphosis from victim to victim's advocate. The Butterfly Garden is a timeless triumph, a reminder that hope can be the most powerful of all emotions, freeing us to soar despite the past and the odds against us.

My Thoughts: It is unfathomable the hell that Chip St. Clair went through growing up. With each passing chapter I was more horrified. The only good to come of this was that Michael Grant was put back behind bars where he belonged. Chip's entire childhood was a farce. He and his parents moved around a lot, sometimes leaving places in the middle of the night. Chip was punished for the littlest things.....a throw pillow out of place, a dirty sock left on the floor. He endured his abuse up until his teenage years. At that point, he knew that he had to get away and somehow find out about his past. He meets his soul mate, Lisa, and the two of them begin uncovering secrets that would shock not only themselves, but local law enforcement and eventually the nation.

Chip tells his story with honesty and emotion. He finally becomes the person that he has always wanted to be. Like a butterfly that has been in a cocoon, he emerges strong and free with his loving wife beside him, ready to share his story with everyone, hoping to keep children everywhere safe from abuse.

Photobucket Good

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: HCI (January 18, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0757306950
  • ISBN-13: 978-0757306952

About the Author

Chip St. Clair is a recipient of a U.S. Congressional Record for his work helping to keep abused children safe and to keep predators behind bars. He began sharing his story nationally in 2002, having been featured on major television programs such as Dateline, Good Morning America, and the John Walsh Show. Most recently, St. Clair helped to pass Michigan's, Montana's, and Maryland's versions of Jessica's Law.


pam said...

I find true crime so fascinating. I've added this to my list. Thanks for the review!

Julie P said...

This book sounds kind of like A Boy Called It. The story is so unbelievable that it is difficult to put down. I have The Butterfly Garden on my TBR shelf but I haven't read it yet. Looking forward to it now. Thanks for sharing!

Unknown said...

Missy, you know how I love memoirs I'll have to keep an eye out for this. Thanks for adding to my tbr :)

serendipity_viv said...

It sounds like it is one of those books you should read, but I think it might be too much for me.

Priya Parmar said...

i love the significance of the title. how horrifying for him and how extraordinary to take all that hurt and then live such a productive, helpful life.

Martha Eskuchen said...

This sounds very interesting! I hadn't heard of it. Thanks. I am glad he was able to make the metamorphosis.


Blog Widget by LinkWithin
Blog Design by Use Your Imagination Designs Enchanted Neighborhood kit by Irene Alexeeva