The Wedding Bees: A Novel of Honey, Love, and Manners

The Wedding Bees: A Novel of Honey, Love, and Manners

4.4 7
by Sarah-Kate Lynch
     
 

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Sugar Wallace did not believe in love at first sight, but her bees did. . . .

Every spring Sugar Wallace coaxes her sleepy honeybee queen—presently the sixth in a long line of Queen Elizabeths—out of the hive and lets her crawl around a treasured old map. Wherever the queen stops is their next destination, and this year it's New York City.

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Overview

Sugar Wallace did not believe in love at first sight, but her bees did. . . .

Every spring Sugar Wallace coaxes her sleepy honeybee queen—presently the sixth in a long line of Queen Elizabeths—out of the hive and lets her crawl around a treasured old map. Wherever the queen stops is their next destination, and this year it's New York City.

Sugar sets up her honeybees on the balcony of an East Village walk-up and then––as she's done everywhere since leaving South Carolina––she gets to know her neighbors. She is, after all, a former debutante who believes that manners make the world a better place even if they seem currently lacking in the big city.

Plus, she has a knack for helping people. There's Ruby with her scrapbook of wedding announcements; single mom Lola; reclusive chef Nate; and George, a courtly ex-doorman. They may not know what to make of her bees and her politeness, but they can't deny the magic in her honey.

And then there's Theo, a delightfully kind Scotsman who crosses Sugar's path as soon as she gets into town and is quickly besotted. But love is not on the menu for Sugar. She likes the strong independent woman she's become since leaving the South and there's nothing a charmer like Theo can do to change her mind . . . only her bees can do that.

The Wedding Bees is a novel about finding sweetness where you least expect it and learning to love your way home.

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Editorial Reviews

The New Zealand Herald
“A sweetly old-fashioned romance with a high feel-good factor . . . The Wedding Bees is a romp of a novel, designed to be read for pure pleasure.”
Graham Beattie
“Clever and humorous, The Wedding Bees is a gentle tale of love, honey, manners and new beginnings. Another charming and witty story in the style the author has made her own.”
Kerre Woodham
“A sweet story of love and loss, this is another cracker from one of New Zealand’s most successful novelists . . . Witty, warm and wonderful - this is Sarah Kate Lynch at her best. ”
Chicago Tribune on DOLCI DI LOVE
‘An utterly beguiling blend of love and loss, heartbreak and hope that will dazzle readers.”
Kirkus Reviews
2013-11-26
A Southern beekeeper moves to Manhattan and causes quite a buzz in a honey-coated, hard-to-swallow romance. Self-exiled Sugar Wallace flits from one location to the next with her bees, a blue ceramic birdbath and two gardenias in tow, but she only alights long enough to help others heal from their emotional and physical ills. But Sugar doesn't choose each new place at random: Her queen bee, Elizabeth the Sixth, crawls around on a map and designates the next stop. Sugar's move to NYC begins with an almost calamitous collision on her new street, but the two men involved, attractive Scotsman Theo Fitzgerald and elderly George Wainwright, are fine. When she reaches out to ensure they're OK, Sugar's drawn to Theo like a bee to honey, which disconcerts her. Betty (Sugar's pet name for Elizabeth the Sixth), too, feels something and finally realizes she has more purpose in life than just being a queen bee and reproducing. Sugar settles into her new apartment building, sets up her beekeeping on the roof, and, searching for a cup of (what else?) sugar, meets her unhappy neighbors: the single-mother owner of a failing balloon shop, an anorexic girl who collects wedding announcements, an older man whose only joy is his flat-screen TV, a woman who complains about everyone, and a shy, plump baker. Sugar spreads her honey-laden products among her fellow tenants, invites them to her place and gently sticks her nose into their beeswax. She also has long soul-searching conversations with George (who becomes the building's volunteer doorman, thanks to Sugar) and runs into Theo at the local Greenmarket. Although Theo pursues Sugar, every meeting results in some stinging misunderstanding, which sends Sugar fleeing in the opposite direction. When Sugar finally tells George what's bothering her, Betty and her worker bees swarm into action, and Sugar learns things about her neighbors she never suspected. Southerners might not take too kindly to the bizarre portrait Lynch (Dolci di Love, 2011, etc.) has painted of Sugar and her bees as the story moves beyond stereotypical--unsophisticated Sugar always wears ribbons in her hair, concocts honeyed cure-alls for every ailment and drips with starry-eyed optimism--to farcical--Betty schemes to unite Sugar and Theo by leading the swarm back and forth between Sugar's rooftop and Theo's as Sugar gives chase. There are too many points in the book that stretch the plot and characters from beyond believable to just plain silly.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780062252616
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
01/28/2014
Sold by:
HARPERCOLLINS
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
368
Sales rank:
107,484
File size:
478 KB

Meet the Author

Sarah-Kate Lynch is the author of eight novels and travel editor of New Zealand Woman's Day, New Zealand's bestselling weekly magazine.

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