Tuesday, January 8, 2013

"The Death of Bees is proof that we need to try and learn people's stories before we judge them." --Miki

Today is Christmas Eve.
Today is my birthday. 
Today I am fifteen. 
Today I buried my parents in the backyard.
Neither of them were beloved. 

Marnie and her little sister, Nelly, are on their own now. Only they know what happened to their parents, Izzy and Gene, and they aren't telling. While life in Glasgow's Maryhill housing estate isn't grand, the girls do have each other. Besides, it's only a year until Marnie will be considered an adult and can legally take care of them both.

As the New Year comes and goes, Lennie, the old man next door, realizes that his young neighbors are alone and need his help. Or does he need theirs? Lennie takes them in—feeds them, clothes them, protects them—and something like a family forms. But soon enough, the sisters' friends, their teachers, and the authorities start asking tougher questions. As one lie leads to another, dark secrets about the girls' family surface, creating complications that threaten to tear them apart.

Written with fierce sympathy and beautiful precision, told in alternating voices, The Death of Bees is an enchanting, grimly comic tale of three lost souls who, unable to answer for themselves, can answer only for one another.

Miki says:
"This book was very different than anything else I have read.  Although the characters are gritty and a little hard to love, some how, they become very endearing. This novel shows that we often form our own family bonds with those we least expect. Sometimes love, affection, and sacrifice are found in the people we often right off in the beginning.  The Death of Bees is proof that we need to try and learn people's stories before we judge them. I loved O'Donnell's writing and I can't wait to tell customers about it."


Lisa O'Donnell said...

Thank you so much for this review Miki. I really appreciate your insight.

Seattle Divorce Lawyers said...

What an interesting mixture of elements. I am beyond curious and am adding it to my TBR. Thanks for your informative review.

Irene Jennings said...

Great read. An emotional and raw slice of life for 2 girls who find themselves suddenly without their seemingly worthless parents. A little sad, but a very different and interesting novel. I would highly recommend this book.

Irene (Seattle Plumber Pinky's)