- Paperback: 384 pages
- Publisher: Headline Review; Later Printing edition (20 Nov. 2008)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0755349806
- ISBN-13: 978-0755349807
- Product Dimensions: 18 x 19.9 x 2.6 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars See all reviews (972 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,020,097 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Secret Life of Bees Paperback – 20 Nov 2008
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Eccentric, inventive, and ultimately forgiving... a truly original Southern voice (Anita Shreve)
'With imagination as lush and colorful as the American South, a clutch of deliciously eccentric characters, and vivid prose, Sue Monk Kidd creates a rich, maternal haven in a harsh world' (Christina Schwarz)
'Sue Monk Kidd has written a wonderful novel about mothers and daughters and the transcendent power of love' (Connie May Fowler)
This is a wonderful book, by turns funny, sad, full of incident and shot through with grown-up magic reminiscent of Joanne Harris. (Daily Telegraph)
A honey-sweet novel (Elle)
What a splendid novel! It's wonderfully thoughtful and sensitive and compulsively readable (Susan Isaacs)
'Simply wonderful' (Anne Rivers Siddons)
Monk Kidd has created a narrative as skilful and sweet as a honeycomb. Uplifting and warm-hearted, this is a moving novel and Lily is a fascinating, funny and clever narrator (Literary Review)
Kidd's first novel is well placed, gentle and deeply moving (The Times)
'Moving, original, and accomplished...Wonderfully written, powerful, poignant, and humorous... Do read it' (Joanna Trollope)
'Sue Monk Kidd... Illuminates what is beautiful... THE SECRET LIFE OF BEES is a gift, filled with hope' (Luanne Rice)
'Superb' (Woman & Home)
'An uplifting and heart-warming book' (Wynnum Herald, Australia)
A fabulous and poignant coming-of-age novel which has sold over 5 million copies worldwide and has been made into a stunning feature filmSee all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
Neglected by her father, Lily is brought up by Rosaleen, a big-hearted black woman, who loves Lily and whom Lily loves. Yet, hers is a lonely existence, compounded by her unquenched thirst for information about her mother, Deborah. All she has left of her mother are some cloudy memories and a box containing a few mementos, among them a picture of a Black Madonna, inscribed with the words, "Tiburon, S.C."
When Rosaleen goes into town to register to vote, she feels empowered by the passing of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and has a run-in with the town's three biggest racists, resulting in Rosaleen being taken into custody. Lily arranges for her to break free. Together, they seek sanctuary in Tiburon, South Carolina, where Lily discovers the mystery of the Black Madonna. Taken in by a trio of middle-aged black women who are sisters, as well as beekeepers, Lily is introduced to the secret life of bees and begins to learn some important life lessons. She also learns something about her mother and finds love where she least expected.
This is simply a beautifully realized novel, written in a true Southern voice by a wonderful writer with a story to tell. It is little wonder that this compelling book has received so many accolades. It is a stunning fiction debut by the author.
Sue Monk Kidd does a brilliant job of laying out a storyline that is not only believable, but is interesting as well. I could not put this book down. Lily Owens will capture your heart. Despite the abuse from the hands of her father T. Ray, she turned out to be a survivor. Sharing her destiny with the beekeeping sisters, and their Black Madonna honey, she finally attains some emotional security in her life. May, one of the sisters is someone who inspires. This is a novel for young adults and adults, because at 14, Lily fights with the hazy memory of her dead mother whom she misses and longs for in rural South Carolina of 1964, where racial violence is inescapable. She finds solace in her surrogate mother - the family's black servant, Rosaleen, who later becomes a victim of racial hatred. It moved on to the escape of Lily and Rosaleen, the search for the identity of Lily's mother's identity and the quest for a sense of belonging in her life This journey led Lily and Rosaleen into the lives of three strange but alluring beekeepers who set Lily who helped Lily to grow up and be at peace with her family and its history.
The story is told through Lily's eyes, mouth, mind and heart, and as such it is deep, hilarious and inspiring.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Family isn't always blood.......curiously interesting book. Humbled. A decent read with a good story line and characters easy to Imagine and relate to.Published 4 days ago by Sue
I didn't know what to expect with this book but saw all the positive reviews and took the plunge!. I wasn't disappointed and it must now rate as one of my favourites. Read morePublished 9 days ago by Cafelattedoris
Beeeutiful. It has nothing to do with bees and everything. This is perfectly written narrative of a young woman's journey. Read morePublished 10 days ago by Chris Wheal