Book Review: The Secret Life of Bees


There is a special kind of writing style that speaks to a woman’s spirit and makes her soul rejoice. It can be difficult to find such a book, but when found it is a real treasure. In the novel, “The Secret Life of Bees,” by Sue Monk Kidd, I found myself laughing and crying along with the characters. I felt deeply connected to the women in the novel and was sad to see my new friends go when the story came to an end. Sue Monk Kidd truly breathed life into this book, in a way that takes tremendous talent. I find myself longing for a sequel, just so I can see what my beloved characters are up to now! If you are a woman, you are almost guaranteed to love this book! The writing style is distinctly feminine and beautiful. I thought to myself, “It is about time I read something from a powerful female perspective.” For me, reading this book came as naturally as breathing.

The central character of the book is a young girl named Lily Owens, who lives with her abusive father. Her mother died in a tragic accident and Lily is thirsty for more information about her mother’s life and death. She has a few of her mother’s belongings that she clings to and imagines the stories of how these items came to be in her mother’s possession. She is close to her care-taker, Rosaleen, who is a big strong black woman. However, loving a black woman is hardly seen as proper, as Lily is living in South Carolina in 1964, in the midst of racial tension and deep rooted discrimination.
The story really takes off when a series of unfortunate events leads Lily to take the risk and run away from home with Rosaleen in tow. What happens next inspires and delights as you go with Lily to discover what life is really about. It is a tremendously inspiring and healing journey with beautiful and colorful characters. This is a book you don’t want to miss!
Title: The Secret Life of Bees
Author: Sue Monk Kidd
Publisher: Penguin Books
ISBN#: 0-670-89460-5 (hc)
ISBN #: 0 14 20.0174 0 (pbk)
Laura Markley © 2007 ,

  • Darcy Shaw

    I agree completely. My son bought this book for me and I set it aside thinking “I’ll read it later” really not expecting much. Was I wrong! This book is so wonderful! She has written a second fiction book “The Mermaid Chair” which was very good,but not up to the exceptional “Secret Life of Bees”. She has written some inspirational books as well, which I haven’t read yet.
    Darcy Shaw