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The Secret Life of Bees | [Sue Monk Kidd]

The Secret Life of Bees

Sue Monk Kidd's ravishing debut novel has stolen the hearts of reviewers and readers alike with its strong, assured voice. Set in South Carolina in 1964, The Secret Life of Bees tells the story of Lily Owens, whose life has been shaped around the blurred memory of the afternoon her mother was killed.
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Publisher's Summary

Sue Monk Kidd's ravishing debut novel has stolen the hearts of reviewers and readers alike with its strong, assured voice. Set in South Carolina in 1964, The Secret Life of Bees tells the story of Lily Owens, whose life has been shaped around the blurred memory of the afternoon her mother was killed.

When Lily's fierce-hearted "stand-in mother", Rosaleen, insults three of the town's fiercest racists, Lily decides they should both escape to Tiburon, South Carolina - a town that holds the secret to her mother's past. There, they are taken in by an eccentric trio of black beekeeping sisters who introduce Lily to a mesmerizing world of bees, honey, and the Black Madonna who presides over their household.

This is a remarkable story about divine female power and the transforming power of love - a story that women will share and pass on to their daughters for years to come.

©2003 Sue Monk Kidd; (P)2008 Penguin

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.4 (1267 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Susan Calgary, Alberta, Canada 07-03-10
    Susan Calgary, Alberta, Canada 07-03-10 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "The Secret Life of Bees"

    This audio book is delightful and inspiring. I enjoyed the gentle rhythm of the book. This is a presentation of powerful women who live a life of integrity and wisdom.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Patricia Washington, DC, USA 08-12-09
    Patricia Washington, DC, USA 08-12-09
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
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    4
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    "The Secret Lifes of Bees"

    I loved the book. It was sad but a great story. I listen to it while walking home from work and it was a great companion.

    Patricia

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ed Saint Augustine, FL, United States 02-03-11
    Ed Saint Augustine, FL, United States 02-03-11 Member Since 2006

    Retired former magazine editor who is working harder than ever as Mr. Dad to his 11-year-old daughter.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "An enjoyable listen"

    Had I not read "The Help" first, so much this book might have earned five stars too. To me, the most interesting character is this story was May. The author earned six stars for May's character development. As a matter of fact, most of the female characters were well done, while I thought the male characters were average. The story was fairly predictable with no big surprises and no outrageous plot twists. I think the story lends itself to a sequel and I hope the author takes a stab at one. I look forward to renting the movie version. And the narrator did an outstanding job.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    ann coleman LEWISVILLE, TX, US 09-08-13
    ann coleman LEWISVILLE, TX, US 09-08-13 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Book always better!"

    I watched the movie first and really enjoyed it, but the book is always better!!! I love this story. Fantastic writing!!!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Emily EATONTOWN, NEW JERSEY, US 03-01-13
    Emily EATONTOWN, NEW JERSEY, US 03-01-13 Member Since 2009
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    "Great Story!"
    Would you consider the audio edition of The Secret Life of Bees to be better than the print version?

    I haven't read it in print but I can't imagine it could be better then Jenna Lamia reading it to me. I did enjoy the audio book better then the movie though.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    August because I think she knew just who Lilly was and how much she needed August and her sisters right from the beginning.


    Which character – as performed by Jenna Lamia – was your favorite?

    Lilly.


    Any additional comments?

    I loved this book. Lilly's perspective gave you such a clear view of the time. I especially love how Lilly didn't see color like the other white people she had in her life before she found August and her sisters.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    12-16-11
    12-16-11 Member Since 2008
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    "Well done!"

    I loved this book and the narrator was wonderful. I know this is also a movie and I want to see it, but I'm glad I've listened to the book first. It did make me cry alot though.

    Definitely recommend, but probably more of a female read.

    Carol

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    John Miamisburg, OH, United States 10-08-11
    John Miamisburg, OH, United States 10-08-11
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    "wonderful story"

    A superb blend of characters and historical events. Each one comes to life and will win your heart.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Novotny Klamath Falls OR 09-09-11
    Novotny Klamath Falls OR 09-09-11 Member Since 2010
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    "Terrific"

    The narrator was excellent--which makes the presentation a great listen. Good book. x x x

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    03-21-11
    03-21-11
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    ""All those Mommas...""

    This is a lovely story, the color of golden honey. I actually listened to the whole thing in one day. A beautiful, fistful of unconditional love. I highly recommend it, especially if you're home alone.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jeff Auburn, WA, United States 02-27-11
    Jeff Auburn, WA, United States 02-27-11 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great Story"

    A very good story and read very well. Another reading that made the book come thru in 3D. Left you thinking there must be more to the story. Maybe?

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
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