Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Book Review: The Secret Life of Bees

I just finished The Secret Life of Bees, by Sue Monk Kidd. The heroine, 14 year old Lily Owens, is miserable: she endures cruel punishments from her father for the slightest infraction, she wallows in the guilt over the fact that she accidentally killed her mother in a gun accident when she was four years old, and she doesn't have any friends aside from her nanny, Rosaleen. The story takes place in 1964 racially-divided South Carolina, and sets into motion when Lily accompanies Rosaleen (who is black) on a trip into town to register to vote. They get into an altercation with three white men that results in their arrest, and Lily and Rosaleen run away together, one from the law and one from her father. They blindly head to Tiburon, South Carolina, because the town's name is written on the back of a picture owned by Lily's mother. In Tiburon, they wind up at the house of the Boatwright sisters, three black women who run a beekeeping and honey business (hence the title). The sisters take them in without asking any questions, and Lily slowly comes to grips with her past and finds a new future for herself.
So, yes, it's a bit cheesy, a tad predictable, and seems like a shoe-in for Oprah's Book Club, but damn it, I still liked it and found it hard to put down.
Looks like it's going to be made into a movie, starring You-Know-Who as Lily.

4 comments:

Mrs. V said...

Your link to 'You-Know-Who' took me to the book, I thought it would show the person you were refering to....like Oprah, maybe....

Maria said...

Check the link again. Above the books it says, "The Secret Life of Bees will be coming to theaters as a film starring Dakota Fanning..."

eileen said...

Yep, I was refering to Dakota Fanning. That girl is in EVERYTHING. and she scares me a little.

Kim said...

She doesn't seem right for the role as Lily. Doesn't Hollywood realize there ARE other child actresses out there?