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
I have a rather eclectic love of books. I know what I like and I tend not to be a severe critic. If I enjoyed it, it gets 4 or 5 stars.
I don't know why I avoided reading this book for so long - it was such a wonderful story! Jenna Lamia is a great narrator and made this read near perfect. It is a heartwarming book that focuses on the relationships between women, with a few men sprinkled in here and there. It is set in South Carolina in the 1960s, and portrays how we all belong to one race - the human race.
I don't usually go for this genre, but I was won over from the very beginning. The characters are vivid, the writing is creatively descriptive and witty (without being flowery). The performance was spot on and endearing. The story had a powerful message, as all good stories do. I would recommend this book to anyone- an easy, enjoyable listen!
The ending was just right for this book. A little predictable, but just what we wanted. We actually had a great conversation in my book club, considering the ending and what could have happened in the years that followed. Excellent springboard for the imagination.
I haven't heard anything else from this narrator but you can be sure I'll look for her!! Jenna Lamia was PERFECT for this book. I found the story line was not necessarily my cup of tea, but I couldn't stop listening because I just loved to hear her tell it!!
I loved Sue Monk Kidd's The Invention of Wings and that is why I listened to this book. I must say The Invention of Wings was far superior in my opinion. In addition, I love Jenna Lamia. I was hooked on her from The Help and The Invention of Wings. This book was a bit boring and lacked excitement.
Yes. The Invention of Wings was amazing!
I have listed to The Help and The Invention of Wings narrated by Jenna Lamia. She is one of my favorite narrators and did not disappoint in The Secret Life of Bees.
I found the audio easy to follow and keep track of characters. I have not read the print version and feel no need to after hearing the audio edition. The reader's voice was appropriate for the setting and enjoyable.
The phrase, "Some people bite off more than they can chew, but August chews more than she can bite off." That was memorable
When Rosalie confronted Lilly, after they escaped from the hospital, questioning her motives.
August was so strong and steady and loving--very memorable. But, May will also stay with me as she was so in tune and I loved her wall.
All the comments about bees were wonderful and informative. At the end I was remembering how I love to crawl under the drooping branches of the desert Ironwood trees in the spring when the bees are hard at work. When I curl up near the trunk, the bees ignore me and I can sleep listening to the symphony all around me. This book spoke of the same sensation.
The slow start of the book is forgotten after you get into the main section. So much color and emotions and real history. You end up loving all of the characters. I would listen to it again for sure.
I like historical, southern books - southern accents, antiques - The Ole' West, Ghost Towns, Victorian Era, Southern Humor!!
What a life for a young girl to go through! Lily proves that she is smart and is a very loving, caring person. She accomplishes her travels and learns so much throughout. She is strong and determined.
Lovely book, would listen to again and I highly recommend.
This book really brought you back in time. Life was so much simpler then. I really enjoyed the everyday life part of the story.
This book really moved me emotionally.
I loved the narration. She brought the feeling of the emotions to this wonderful story.
I do not listen to any book in one sitting, I have a long commute and listen in my car.
I loved the story, but did find it a little sad.
kindness always matters
It took me into the story
When she runs away from home, and sleeping by the creek
It is a film, I have not seen it, but I will.
You will enjoy this book, give it a try.
I would sum up The Secret Life of Bees with the words: true, wise, and touching.
The most memorable moment for me was when Lily had bees swarming around her and she didn't flinch but floated mentally to another place and was able to keep calm and become "one" with the bees.
There are so many gems in this book. Each word drips with sweet truth against the backdrop of bitter racism. The book doesn't focus on "racism" beyond the matter of fact reality of living in the south during that era.
August is the most memorable character for me. Salt of the earth sweetened with a lifetime of honey.
Please read or listen to this book before you see the movie. You will be touched, moved, and uplifted by this glorious work of art.
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