C. Fulsty - Tony's Butterflies [Book] (Cover Artwork)

C. Fulsty

Tony's Butterflies [Book] (2018)


Tony Sly left his wife and two daughters, Fiona and Keira, behind when he passed in 2012. Not to mention his friends, contemporaries and hoards of adoring fans. Tony’s songs had a massive impact on this world, more so than you’d think a punk rock band of No Use For A Name’s stature might have. Since his death, many songs and words have been released in tribute. Most notably Songs Of Tony Sly: A Tribute, which was an incredibly touching and well-done tribute record.

Now we get a tribute in the form of a children’s book by author and illustrator C. Fulsty who’s done a number of children’s book previously. Dedicated to Tony’s daughters, this book imaginatively tells the tale of a family of flies/butterflies that love to play hide and seek with their dad. One day they can’t find their dad and after looking everywhere they give up. Only to hear Tony Fly singing from the heavens reassuring his daughters that he will always be there watching over them.

Dr. Seuss or Roald Dahl this is not, with it’s clumsy rhymes and rudimentary illustrations. Though it is an absolutely sweet and touching story that not only could potentially help younger children cope with the death of someone they love but also give hope to those that haven’t lost a parent. It has a positive message and it’s told in a rhyming fashion that is fun for reading and listening.

Even us old people get a little something with a prologue written by Tony’s two daughters and his wife Brigette giving us a few words about Tony. It makes for some watery eyes. Especially if you’ve got kids of your own.

Ultimately it doesn’t really matter what a grown man thinks of this book. The true test is with the intended audience. Given that my daughter lives on a steady diet of Peppa Pig and Paw Patrol books at bedtime, I was a little worried that she wouldn’t give Tony’s Butterflies the time of day. Fears abated after the first page though as she was able to relate to the hide and go seek arc of the story with the two girls looking for Dad. We read it three times in a row upon first sitting. That’s a bona fide seal of approval from a three and half year old.

Tony’s Butterflies is a special and well-meaning book that not only entertains but also could potentially help children cope with the loss of a loved one. Not only that but proceeds benefit the “Tony Sly Music Foundation For Kids” which “promotes music learning in a fun and inspiring way”. A lot of positive and heart-warming things have come out of Tony Sly’s death and this is just another one of those instances and perhaps the most positive one to date.

RIP Tony Sly