Customer Reviews for

The Secret Life of Bees

Average Rating 4.5
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

16 out of 23 people found this review helpful.

Very Good!!

I'm only eleven years old and loved the book. I got it at the library after seeing the trailer to the movie. It is a very humbling book. I don't think that kids under 13 should read it though. It has lots of cursing and is extremly descriptive in parts it shouldn't be. ...
I'm only eleven years old and loved the book. I got it at the library after seeing the trailer to the movie. It is a very humbling book. I don't think that kids under 13 should read it though. It has lots of cursing and is extremly descriptive in parts it shouldn't be. It was an awsome book though. Please read it you will love it!!!

P.S. The books i recomended are even better!!!

posted by Sarah_661 on October 18, 2008

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Most Helpful Critical Review

5 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

The Secret Life of Bees earns a "C"

Though Ms. Kidd's writing is beautifully evocative,"Bees" needed much tighter editing in the last half of the book. For a teenage girl who had a self admittted fault of talking too much,the plot line of Lily waiting so long to ask August about her mother just did not ri...
Though Ms. Kidd's writing is beautifully evocative,"Bees" needed much tighter editing in the last half of the book. For a teenage girl who had a self admittted fault of talking too much,the plot line of Lily waiting so long to ask August about her mother just did not ring true.

posted by Anonymous on November 25, 2002

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 16, 2011

    Prety well written

    Wonderful book, would recomend to anyone.

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  • Posted March 7, 2011

    The Blurry Memory

    The Secret Life of Bees is the story of Lily Owens, a girl who feels abused by her father and confused on the lost memory of her mother's death. The novel takes place in the 1960's when racial divisions caused violence. Lily's caretaker Rosaleen leaves town with her after a violent encounter. Lily and Rosaleen are taken with open arms by the 'calendar sisters' May, June, and August Boatwright. The three sisters own a bee farm where Lily is able to think about her past and begin to trust as she finds love again. Lily experiences a journey with painful secrets and shattering betrayals. That ultimately help her find the thing her heart longs for most. I really enjoyed this book because it shares a story that some may be able to relate to. It has a captivating plot with displays that you may not expect. I love the way the author Sue Monk Kidd chose to develop the characters. She also has wonderful imagery with characters and settings. The best thing would be the way the bees tie into the novel itself. And why the book is titles The Secret Life of Bees.I like the journey Lilly takes to learn to forgive herself, a lesson in life we must all learn. It's a story that really makes you think and feel like Lilly in her time of despair. This novel is a must read simply because it has a way of keeping you interested. It's interesting because it shares a deep love some can relate to in their time being. Yes I would definitely recommend this book for all to read; simply because of the deep message of the secret life, of bees.

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  • Posted March 16, 2010

    The Secret Life Of Bees

    The novel, The Secret Life Of Bees, written by Sue Monk Kidd, is a book that anyone can read if they like to read about stories that have more descriptions instead of a lot dialogue. This novel takes place in small town called Sylvan in South Carolina of the summer of 1964. The main character, Lily Owens, is a teenage girl who has to live with a person who is very rude and abusive towards the people he "loves" and cares about. This is her dad T. Ray. After Lily had enough living with T. Ray's abusive ways, she runs away to a town called Tiburon in South Carolina to find more information about her mother who passed away when she was three years old. Coming along with her, she has her housekeeper, Rosaleen. Along the way the two of them have some struggles that they over came. Once they did that and made it to Tiburon, a woman named August Boatwright took them in as houseguests, along with her two sisters June and May. While staying in the house, stories of Lily's mother starts to unravel and all of Lily's questions are starting to slowly be answered.
    To me this was an okay book to read. Maybe its because I like to read stories that have more dialogue instead of descriptions. While reading the story, I came across a quote that I thought was interesting: "A person shouldn't look too far down her nose at absurdities." To me this quote is saying that people shouldn't try to find solutions else where, when the answers are right in front of their face; you should just let them come to you. All and all, reading this novel was not a very difficult reading. What I got from reading The Secret Life Of Bees is that everything happens to a person for a reason. Either its good or bad, it's happening so people can grow and learn from it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 11, 2010

    A Wonderful Book for Students of All Ages

    This is a great book. It has recently been included in the English curriculum at the High School I work at. I feel it is a welcome addition. The students really end up loving the book, and there are so many educational moments to extract from it. The characters are complex and interesting. The plot is moving yet realistic. There is a very real historical connection to the 1960s and the era of segregation; and there is a spiritual aspect that will spark many debates. I recommend this as a great read for any one.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 20, 2009

    An Amazing book!!!! ( *= hiding the words so I won't give away the story)

    This is an amazing book. There were some good times, bad times, and some sad times. I borowed this from a friend and now i really want to own this myself. The part when Lily aked T -Ray if she really did k*** her m*****. And he said "I could tell you I did it which is what you want to here and I could tell you she did but I would be lying." I really wanted to cry at this part and when she was sitting on g**** on her knees. Lily and Zach, oh Lily and Zach! (You really want to read this book) How the story ended was absolutley perfect!!! This book is extremely touching and i would want to read this book multiple times. I recomend this book to everyone!!!!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 11, 2009

    Great story

    My daughter had to read a book relating to "coming of age" and had to have an adult read the same book. "The Secret Life of Bees" was on the list of possible books and it was one of the only ones we found available on short notice. We both read the book together and really enjoyed it. We especially liked how fate brought her to the bee farm and how August knew who she was and was willing to take her in and wait until she was ready to tell her story.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 5, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Find out how events from the past reveal an interesting future

    The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd is an inspirational novel that really had me thinking the entire time. The climax of the book was, of course, the most interesting and enjoyable to read. I think that the characters had eye popping personalities which made the book a whole lot more incredible. This book is a great conversation starter and you will find yourself so engaged into the text you'd want to continue to read. This book was passed down from my grandmother to my mother to me. Therefore it is also a novel that can be passed on to younger generations. All in all it will be very beneficial to take the time to read this book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 5, 2009

    Lily's secret life is uncovered when the bees come in...

    The Secret Life of Bees is about the story of a small girl, Lily, who deals with living life without her mother. She is unsure of exactly how her mother lost her life, and is given many false ways to how it happened. Living at home with her father, T-Rey, and Maid, Rosaleen, began to not be such an easy task. Her story is inspirational and detailed on how she escapes to live with another "family" in another area of South Caolina. The start of the adventure captures you into reading until you reach the end. The problems that Lily must overcome are difficult and forces her to deal with grown-up situations that some of us never have to deal with in a lifetime. The determination that she has to get away from her father and start a new life allows her to succeed in finding out the information she wants to know about her mother. The end will surely surprise any reader. Overall, I really enjoyed the book and I found it really touching.

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  • Posted October 5, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    "Lily's life is less than perfect, but when the bees come it changes for the better!"

    In The Secret life of bees, Lily is a fourteen year old girl who is very confused about her past. She is living with her horrid father who forgets what love is when his wife, Lily's mother dies. Lily and her friend Rosaleen, escape the tyranny of her father to a small town called Tiberon. There she meets a family of three black sisters who are beekeepers. they show her what love and life is about. and she also uncovers the secrets of her past.

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  • Posted October 5, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    The most amazing novel I've read in 2009!!

    I liked this book because it is very attractive, however it also catches young readers' attentions. The genre of this book is "come of age", so we might have something in common as the the main character has. We might also have the same challenges that the character and us are going through. We could definitely get some ideas on how they solve their problems and we might use them as one of our everyday life strategies. This book revealed a role of racisim, totally showed the 1930's reality for the readers. It also shows the relationships between family members and how cruel a dad can be to his daughter. In addition, I love how the author described every details so that it gives an image in my mind about what is going on. It is a very easy to read book, I would recommend it to people who loves to read lifestyle novels. we can somehow learn from them. This book shows us that how a teenage girl deals with her problems and it is definitely worth to read about it.

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  • Posted October 5, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    The best story that will be in your heart.

    The secret life of bees is the story about the adventure of little girl who ran away from her father to find the truth and prove that her dad was wrong about her mother.The little girl walk pass a lot of conflict such as ; racism , her mean dad and the religion that was ver different.How could she do this ? The little girl who has the storng heart will be in your heart forever.

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  • Posted October 5, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    one of the most heart warming stories.

    the secret live of bees is a great story about the adventures of a young girl that lives with her father and struggles with the absence of her mother that died when she was just four years old, this book also has many surprises it takes you back in time, for example it shows everyone how cruel the racism in america was, how hard it was for someone to survive in those days. this book is definetly something you want to read it'll have you dragged from beginning to end.

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  • Posted September 20, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Summer Reading

    I purchased this book for my brother as it was his summer reading assignment for the 10th grade. At first, he was rather skeptical about having to read this book but ended up really enjoying it.

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  • Posted September 20, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    good book

    I really enjoyed this book. We had to read it for school and I did not think I would like it. It is really good. Once I started reading it I could not put it down.

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  • Posted September 15, 2009

    Review

    Secret Life of Bees
    A 14-year old Lily Owen, with a past history of being neglected by her father, is secluded from the rest of the world on their South Carolina farm. She once had a mother whom is thought to love Lily but she has blissful memories of her in a bedroom together when the night she died by her accidently shooting her. She finds, one night in her mother's possessions a strange picture of what seemed like a black Madonna with the words, "Tiburon, South Carolina" on the back. Her friend Rosaleen manages to insult a group of white men after they were cursing. Rosaleen and Lily are forced into jail however T-Ray takes Lily out but leaves Rosaleen. With so many questions about her mother, she finds out an opportunity awaits her.
    She breaks Rosaleen out of jail, escapes from T-Ray and out to Tiburon they go. They trace clues to find the picture of the strange black Madonna in Tiburon which leads them to a household with characters August, May, and June to learn more about her dead mother. The family gives them special hospitality beholding to Lily what love truly is. She makes friends with Augusts' relatives and makes a special one with Zach. At the beginning, Lily does not confess how they ended up at Augusts' house, but in the end she admits and finds out some shocking outcomes of what her mother did. She sticks to her feet as well as her new friends, to stay with this household to retrieve the thought of why life was being presented to her.
    The book presents some situations that can be used for the real world. It explains to stick to your feet against the odds that do not appear correct. Love is a powerful weapon which can defeat one's personal enemy. I perceived the author's message is to present that many are curious about their own personal life. Many are being abused and need to take situations with their open hands. This does not make one's life a misery if every wrong idea comes into effect. After reading this literature, I will take away the knowledge to stick up to others and make the most out of life with new friends. Like Lily alleged, "Someone who thinks death is the scariest thing doesn't know a thing about life."

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 15, 2009

    good book

    The Secret Life of Bees
    The book The Secret Life of Bees is a fictional story of a young girl named Lily Owens. Lily's mother died when Lily was a young girl. She doesn't know much about her mother and her death, and her abusive father, T. Ray, refuses to tell Lily anything relating to her mom. Lily runs away from home to Tiburon, South Carolina with her African American housekeeper, Rosaleen, to uncover the mysteries of her mom.
    I enjoyed reading The Secret Life of Bees, but I have read more interesting literature. The aspects of the story I enjoyed was the storyline and the way the author describes scenes with colorful vocabulary that creates an image in your head and help the reader understand the feelings of others. "I'd traded in a pack of lies for the truth, and I didn't know which one was heavier. Which one took the most strength to carry around? It was a ridiculous question, though, because you know the truth, you can never go back and pick up your suitcase of lies. Heavier or not, the truth is yours now." Reasons why the book did not make my personal list of favorites include: much of the book was predictable, and though the plot is intriguing, it isn't very original. In addition, there wasn't a lot of action, and the little the book did include was subtle.
    I believe that the author, Sue Monk Kidd, was stressing the importance of love, friendship, and sticking up for what you believe in. The character of Lily Owens grows as the book progresses and she learns her where her heart is. The Secret Life of Bees made me think about the struggles I have gone through in my life, and what other children have overcome. I realized that I have no reason to complain about my life and family when others have been in worse situations than I have. ". I looked back at the porch. And there they were. All these mothers. I have more mothers than any eight girls off the street. They are the moons shining over me."

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  • Posted September 15, 2009

    Awesome book!!!

    The Secret Life of Bees
    Many people might not want to read a book about a white girl being taking in by black sisters in the summer of 1969, but I think everyone should have a chance to read this. Its starts off with Lily, she was a little girl when she killed her mother, and her black housekeeper Roseleen. They run away from Lily's dad to Tiburon, South Carolina as fugitives to find, her mom left her a picture of black Mary with the place to on the back, where she had gotten that picture. She meets three honey making/beekeeping sisters, but she can't tell the sisters what she did because they might tell her to get out of the house. They go through the story learning how to be a beekeeper, when something happens to one of the sisters, they get into many fights and quarrels along the way.
    Sue Monk Kidd, I think, is the most descriptive writer out there. Every last little detail that come to mind and some you weren't expecting to show up. The way she tells the story you actually think that you are in the book with Lily and the sisters. Like when she is describing when Lily was going to touch the Our Lady's heart, how everyone was dancing around and June was playing the cello. She was so vibrant in telling how everybody moved and danced.
    The message of the book is that you can overcome your obstacles if you work hard and tell the truth, in due time in Lily's case. This is a great read for mainly teenagers and up. It has some content that isn't for younger children. I would recommend this book for anyone that likes books about people who, despite their hardships, can have a great life

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  • Posted September 7, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Great for Book Clubs!

    I read this book for my club and everyone loved it. It provoked a lot of discussion and deeper thinking. The characters are developed very well and the story line is intriguing. The historical setting was extremely well done; it was very easy to imagine that it was a true story. I didn't put it down until I had finished it!

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  • Posted August 19, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    The Secret Life of Bees

    When I first took "The Secret Life of Bees" off the shelf, I knew it would be different, and I guess I thought it would be slightly boring compared to books I read (Rachel Morgan series, Sookie Stackhouse novels, Anne Rice, that kind of stuff), but I found I was wrong about it. It was unique, and I found it was a book I would request to almost anyone. Hopefully you'll enjoy it, too, because I know I sure did!

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  • Posted July 2, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Better than movie

    I say it is better than the movie but, I haven't seen the movie. I really enjoyed this book. I read it in between some suspense thrillers to clear out my mind. I had this impression of the book based on what I had seen from the movie's trailer. I know that is never wise but, none the less that is what I did. I set all that aside though and just sat down and read. The way the author describes things it is like you have seen these people and places yourself. To put yourself in the shoes of this girl and see this turbulent time in history and her own life was an interesting little side trip from my normal day to day. I couldn't identify with any characters but, they were a nice diversion while I read. And in my opinion that makes a good book!

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