Friday, September 22, 2017

Review (+ Tour GIVEAWAY): Waiting on Butterflies

Click here to purchase your copy.

About the Book

Book title: Waiting for Butterflies  
Author: Karen Sargent  
Release date: April 4, 2017  
Genre: Christian Women’s Fiction

When tragedy strikes, Maggie discovers a mother’s love never ends—not even when her life does. Longing for her family after her death, she returns home where she helplessly witnesses her family’s downward spiral in the aftermath of her passing. 

Her husband is haunted by past mistakes and struggles to redeem himself. Her teenage daughter silently drowns in her own guilt, secretly believing she is responsible for her mother’s death. Only her five-year-old, full of innocence, can sense her presence. 

Although limited by her family’s grief and lack of faith, Maggie is determined to keep a sacred promise and salvage her family before her second chance runs out. 

A tender portrait of a mother whose love reaches beyond possible, Waiting for Butterflies will embrace your heart and not let go.

My Thoughts

Wow! Anything I say will fall short and be woefully inadequate in describing this beautiful story that touches every emotion possible. Karen Sargent knows how to tell an evocative story and has an incredible writing ability. She writes in a character-driven, lyrical style that is not often found in Christian fiction, a style that I long for. I could hardly put it down, even knowing that I would shed tears of emotion occasionally. I hope this is just the first of many stories that readers can anticipate.

If you’ve read the description above, you might be hesitant about trying Waiting for Butterflies for a couple of reasons. First, it deals with an unpleasant topic, the death of a young mother; and secondly, the spirit of that mother “lingers” for a period of time in her family home before going to heaven. But while the topics and emotions are raw and heartbreaking, this is a redemptive, uplifting story overall. And it’s not meant to be a ghost story or a reflection of theology, but rather a moving “what if” story of a mom's love in light of family loss, guilt, grief, and healing.

Maggie’s husband Sam, teenage daughter Rachel, and five-year-old Olivia handle unimaginable tragedy and guilt in different ways, as any of us would – pulled apart by that which should unite them. Sam always found excuses not to attend church with his family, so he has no faith to draw upon. Rachel’s downward spiral is hard to watch … “She didn’t want to think about her mom. That story was over, and she refused to rewrite it for anyone.” Adorable Olivia, the only one who can sense her mother’s presence, simply stole my heart.

Waiting for Butterflies has a huge spiritual impact. In the same way that God places ordinary people in our lives for a purpose, secondary characters impact Sam. Pastor Rob longs to witness to Sam, yet feels that God is telling him to wait. Roxy speaks of God always being at work to Sam … “We can’t see it because we don’t know what to look for. But one day you’ll look back, just like I do, and you’ll wonder how you missed it.”

The restoration of an old house is a beautiful picture of spiritual rebirth, and I loved Gary’s words to Sam …

“A gallon of paint can cover a multitude
of flaws, but it takes something mightier to cover
a man’s sin ... We’ve all sinned, but we’re blessed
that’s not how the story ends.”

I don’t think I’ll ever forget the characters and message of Waiting for Butterflies. “Best of the best” for me.

Very highly recommended.

I was provided a free e-copy of this book through Celebrate Lit. The opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own.

About the Author

Karen Sargent creates characters whose imperfect faith collides with real-life conflicts, taking readers on a journey through grace and redemption to discover enduring hope. A romantic element is woven within each story. 

In addition to writing inspirational novels, she blogs at The MOM Journey…where moms aren’t perfect and that’s perfectly okay. Her writing has been featured in Guidepost’s Angels on Earth magazine and on 

When she is not writing, she teaches high school and college English in the beautiful Arcadia Valley where she resides with her husband and two daughters. Visit her at


Guest Post from Karen Sargent

Waiting for Butterflies: The Accidental Controversy

I didn’t intend to write myself into controversy when I wrote Waiting for Butterflies. Yes, it is Christian fiction. Yes, the main character is a “lingering spirit.” And no, ghosts aren’t biblical. Thus the controversy.

As the story idea began to stir my imagination after my mother-in-law’s unexpected death, I wondered how ghosts fit into the Christian view of the afterlife, especially since I too believe our souls go to Heaven once we die. So I asked my pastor. He referred to Hebrews 11, the “Faith Hall of Fame” that lists Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Moses, and many spiritual giants who lived by faith. That list is followed by Hebrews 12:1 which states, “Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses…” My pastor explained witnesses is translated by some to mean spectators. So maybe, maybe, this suggests those who have died can somehow still be present—emphasis on maybe. 

But…this gave me just enough permission to play with the idea of a mother’s love being so strong that she could remain after her death until she was certain her family would heal. I was writing fiction after all.

When my manuscript was complete and I began submitting to agents, the response was mixed. Some replied with a simple, “This story isn’t for me.” Some warned, “This will be a hard sell to Christian publishers.” Yet others were more encouraging. Finally my story made it to the desk of an acquisition editor who emailed, “This is the one.” Waiting for Butterflies found a publishing home.

Now that my book is in the hands of readers, most are surprised to hear my topic is controversial. Like me, many believers haven’t really considered ghosts in a biblical context. But a few are adamant that the storyline contradicts their beliefs.

I know my story—just like every story—will not appeal to everyone. But I certainly didn’t set out to offend my fellow believers, and I sincerely apologize if anyone finds it offensive. However, I appreciate this perspective one skeptical reader shared in her review:

“While I was initially put off by the idea that a spirit can remain and interact, in a sense, with those still living, the author handled it with sensitivity and grace. We all have ideas about the unknown, but it is just that, unknown, and I could relate strongly to the thought of wanting to continue to influence and connect with loved ones after death in order to help them.”

I appreciate that in spite of the controversy, this reader gave Waiting for Butterflies a chance—and five stars.


Please help spread the word about Waiting for Butterflies by clicking on this link and sharing my Facebook post, then leave a comment here. If you have trouble with the Rafflecopter entry below, please try this direct link:

To celebrate her tour, Karen is giving away a grand prize that includes a few of Karen’s favorite things – one of which is a Hobby Lobby gift card!!! Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries!


  1. Carole, thank you for sharing BUTTERFLIES and introducing me to new reader friends. Your review is such a blessing! Thank you!

    1. I'm so glad God placed this story on your heart, Karen, and I hope it's just the first of many. It's so good to connect with you!

  2. This sounds like a interesting book! Thanks for sharing!

    1. Melissa, I loved it, obviously. Hope you get to read it soon. And it's so good to see you here!

  3. Shared on FB. jarning67(at)hotmail(dot)com

  4. Really enjoyed the description of the book. Sounds like an amazing read.

    1. Dianne, I thought it was amazing, obviously! Hope you get to read it soon.

  5. I remember that after my father died, I lingered with my mother to be sure she was able to resume her regular activities before I returned to my home, which was several states away. So, I can imagine a deceased mother wanting to linger to see that her family would be okay following her death.

  6. This book sounds wonderful. Love to read and review.

  7. Carole, this looks like a great book. I can tell you really enjoyed it so I know I will too. Thank you for sharing. Blessings