Rose Forrester’s life is turned upside down when a friend telephones with the news that her former high school lover, Rob MacIntyre, is back in town after many years. Rose feels a myriad of emotions, and one of them is panic. Rose feels panicky; seventeen years ago, she and Rob had sex. She got pregnant, and Rob subsequently abandoned her. Rose had to go through the pregnancy alone - until she met Everett, to whom she is now married.
Rose never told Everett that he is not the father of her daughter Valley. Everett believes that Valley is his child, and the threesome have been a tight-knit family over the years. Now, Valley is a teenager, and Rob is back in town. It seems that Rob intends to settle permanently in the small town of Eden, Ohio, where word travels fast.
Rose knows that it is only a matter of time before Everett and Valley find out the truth – that Rob is Valley’s father. Rose knows that she needs to have an honest, difficult conversation with both her husband and daughter. It is better that the truth comes from Rose’s mouth than from the town gossips. Understandably, Rose is consumed by Rob’s presence in Eden and the looming task before her.
Rose is not the only person with a lot on her plate. Valley’s babysitting job turns bad, leaving her reeling over a secret that she is keeping, as well as a “date” with a boy that goes awry. Everett is keeping a secret as well. He has developed a health condition that he needs to discuss with his wife and daughter. Instead, he hits the road for a day trip that turns into an overnight “affair,” of sorts. Simply put, each member of the Forrester family is going through some personal challenges and trials.
Butterfly Soup is an interesting, quirky novel, an unfolding drama as Rose deals with the gravity of Rob’s presence in Eden and the fact that Everett and Valley have significant secrets of their own. Rose, Everett and Valley are interesting characters, and the author does a good job with character development. Butterfly Soup has some interesting twists and turns and it stays just on the good side of quirky. I recommend this unique novel to readers of women’s fiction and contemporary fiction.