Shooting Butterflies

‘Her touch is light but acute, her tone easy but flecked with real, black sharpness … a perceptive study of human relations and motivations, painful, funny and fresh’
The Observer

”The heroines of her novels are so strong and so independent of their lovers … readers will flock to support her now her secret’s out’
The Guardian

‘A moving tale … this poignant novel is a reminder of how we look for love in all the wrong places’

In the dramatic and arresting opening to her brilliant new novel, Marika Cobbold draws the reader into the absorbing life of Grace Shield … Shooting Butterflies is a moving tale of love lost and found and of second chances … a heart-wrenching tale that you won’t be able to put down’
Woman’s Way, Dublin

‘The gripping and moving story of one woman’s emotional journey.’
The Times

I was out walking in the country one summer’s day when I came upon a large heap of horse manure on the path in front of me. I was about to step round, nose wrinkled, eyes averted but I paused instead, transfixed by the sight of a beautiful orange and gold butterfly its wings fluttering as it clung onto the heap of manure. That, I thought, just about sums up life.

I’ve been told by some people that Shooting Butterflies is a rather dark novel but I think it’s about hope. We often here of how tragedy may lurk behind a glittering façade. Well, Grace, my main protagonist claims that sometimes a perfectly good life might be hiding behind a tragic façade. Grace is a photographer. She knows all about the difference an angle, a sliver of light, can make to the picture.

Bad things happen to Grace – bad things happen, that’s life. But in most aspects of her life, Grace has choices. Having choices is something that we might take for granted but for women of previous generations it was all too often an unachievable luxury as Grace realises through her developing friendship with ninety year old Louisa. Louisa Blackstaff; forgotten wife of a great man.

To me, humour is the saving grace of mankind and Grace is funny. I know I wrote her, but she really is quite funny. Like many authors, I am constantly frustrated by the gulf between that which I dream of writing and that which I actually manage to produce, but with Shooting Butterflies I think the gulf has narrowed just a little.