The Decimation of Mae (The Blue Butterfly book #1) by D.H. Sidebottom

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Rating: 4.5 stars

Genre: Dark romance, adult

The Devil visited me three times in my life; albeit, my short life. Not in the physical sense, you must understand, but very much literally.

He was persistent, resolute and tenacious. His ruthless greed to annihilate me was utterly disturbing. I am sure if he had hierarchy, the man at the top would have dragged his arse into Hell’s prison for his unscrupulous methods.

I was just fifteen when I first became aware of what he was capable of. This initial taste of him set the playing field for how my life was to be lived – for want of a better word.
He mocked me, showed me mercilessly how he played the game and how he liked to cheat at said game. He ridiculed and taunted me until, six months later, he won and took something of so much importance from me that I would never be the same again.

His second visit was, in my eyes, so much more cruel and heartless. I know we’re talking about the Devil here, and yes, you have a right to say he had no heart but even then, even when I was so utterly broken, I begged to differ and hoped – no, prayed – that somewhere deep in the caverns of his black, tortured soul there was something that beat and confused his emotions once in a while.

The third visit was somewhat different than the other two. He tried, and at first succeeded to bring me to my knees once and for all, but then something happened. God finally intervened and altered Satan’s intention; he sent hope and morphed the Devil’s minion into an Angel, hoping to break and shatter the anguish and suffering. He gave the ability for me to feel pleasure in pain, order in the chaos and light in the darkness.
But in giving me a reprieve, he also gave me something that would finally and ultimately obliterate me. He gave me the capability to love, therefore giving me the ability to be destroyed.
And Satan made sure that I was destroyed. Cruelly, viciously and sadistically.

I am Mae Swift, and this is the story of my decimation.

Please be aware this isn’t for those seeking happy stories or the light hearted readers. There are elements of rape, abuse, addiction and self-harm therefore it’s only suitable for appropriate audiences.

I really enjoy books like these, that are so different to the norm and have no boundaries as to what is or is not acceptable to write. There is no limit to expression and ones that don’t pretend that there’s happiness to be found only in good, but maybe it can also be experienced among the darkest of times.

The main plot line entails Mae and the tragedy that befalls her when she finds herself amidst a monster (Daniel) who’s capable of the darkest things one could possibly imagine. She meets Daniel a number of times in her life before finally ending up in his captivation. She’s a strong girl at first, with all the horrors her life has presented her with she never loses the fight or life in her. But of course, that is all stripped away from her little by little through her meetings with Daniel until at 18 she is completed destroyed. a shell of a vessel so empty and rid of any good feeling. And what will become of this woman? That is the story of the decimation of Mae. Life isn’t always so merciful and forgiving.

No it’s not a love story. It’s full of a gruesome reality that is unfathomable to most. it’s not that I’m an unhappy person or that I particularly have a thing for evil men, it’s just that I believe not every man is an image of perfection and not every person is capable of good. This book mostly contains graphic and horrendous torture and pain conflicted upon Mae both emotionally and physically and I admire the emotion that the author stirs up in the reader. This story is about the development of Mae from a time in her life where everything is the worst imaginable to whether or not she’ll pick herself up from the depression her life has caused her. I have read a number of dark reads in my book life, but this has to be the one that’s most unrelenting. There are no limits to realities that exist far beyond mine or your imaginations.

I liked the fact that Daniel wasn’t represented perfectly. he was an evil man who was capable of almost anything. Most men in books are shown to be characters who know some boundary at-least to their evil ways. but Daniel forewent all of them. but he was still shown as someone who could be redeemable. because good or evil, it doesn’t really matter, we’re all human in the end. maybe we’re just attracted to evil as we are to good. or maybe there is no such thing. nevertheless, we are who we are and this book showed that perfectly.

Daniel puts Mae through the toughest and most darkest times of her life yet she manages to take a peak into his soul where there may still be a little unseen goodness left. That quality of Mae is admirable, the ability  to see good in the worst. She’s never one to lose her sense of self, even if she has lost the will to survive and take relief in the form of pain. You get to glimpse in to the mind of a person who life hasn’t exactly been great to, and therefore the thoughts that arise after losing your sanity and having nothing to survive for.

However the ending really didn’t do it for me which is a shame for the five star I initially wanted to present this story with. it’s safe to say I was disappointed by what happens in the end. after going so well, it just ends in a sappy way where all of a sudden, all the tense drama is forgotten. why that conclusion had to happen with Mae is beyond me, it was completely uncalled for. Throughout the rest of the story i was pretty much hooked on to coming to the conclusion that this will be on my list of favourites for this year but the ending just didn’t really speak to me.

Regardless i will still be giving this a 4.5 star rating, mainly because the story of Mae is not one you can forget. the writing style was intense and captivatingly beautiful, as dark as it was. I loved D.H. Sidebottom’s way with words, it’s poetry in the most intoxicating sense. I’m sure you can already tell by just reading the blurb. I don’t think I’ll be able to forget Mae’s story. it’s gruesome but in a way that makes you open up to all the realities that still exist in this world. It’s worth giving it a read if you don’t mind intense, and a little sad stories. I will be picking up the next part to this; The salvation of Daniel. I just have to know what happens next!

Click here to purchase this on Amazon!

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