Set in South Carolina in 1964, The Secret Life of Bees tells the story of Lily Owens, whose life has been shaped around the blurred memory of the afternoon her mother was killed.
There is a heat that pervades the pages, making it feel as if the South Carolinian sun has snuck in through your back door.
And it is these feisty, loving women, the Boatwright sisters -- May, June and August -- who truly make the book shine.
You can almost feel the sisters' collective love as it wraps itself around young Lily, providing the elixir her broken heart so desperately needs. Ultimately, it is the sweetness -- of the honey, of the sisters, of the sheer, breathtaking humanity in these pages -- that will make you fall in love, whether reading the book for the very first time or upon revisiting it.
The Secret Life of Bees is based on the bestselling book of the same name by Sue Monk Kidd and centers around the plight of 14-year-old Lily (Dakota Fanning). The Secret Life of Bees doesn’t try to pass itself off as a historical documentation of race relations in the 1960s. Though the film is written to show the disparity between blacks and whites, there is always a strong sense of hope, thanks to the lead actresses who bring empathy and dignity to their roles.
Latifah has the part of wise matriarch down pat, even when she’s playing a sister rather than a mother. And it’s clear that Fanning is making a seamless transition from kid to young adult roles.
When Lily's fierce-hearted black "stand-in mother," Rosaleen, insults three of the deepest racists in town, Lily decides to spring them both free.


My copy has so many favorite pages thumbed down that it has blossomed to twice its original size. You might be tempted to fan yourself as you read, or pour yourself a glass of sweet tea or lemonade. With nary a question, the three black women take in Lily -- who has run away from her abusive father -- and her nanny, Rosaleen (whom Lily, incidentally and quite wonderfully, has broken out of jail). As if honey runs through their very veins, the Boatwright ladies teach Lily the intricacies of bee farming, all the while coaching her on the secrets of soul-soothing. I daresay it might even offer solace during a moment in our nation when we need some reminding of the human ties that bind us. In the South in 1964, two companions make a pilgrimage to the home of a trio of bee-keeping sisters. Assuming the burden for her mother’s premature death, she has a precarious relationship with her abusive father T. Lily runs away with her to a town she believes may hold the secrets of her mother’s life.
But the fictional slice of life still resonates because of the feelings of injustice that it stirs up.
Hudson exhibits some of the same quiet grace that Regina Taylor brought to her role as the family housekeeper in the superb TV series I’ll Fly Away. Whether she’s giving an impassioned monologue or listening thoughtfully, Fanning brings nuance and intelligence to her role.


Wallpaper images in the The Secret Life Of Bees club tagged: lily dakota flanning the secret life og bees book cover.
Set during a steamy summer in South Carolina at the height of the civil rights movement, the novel grabs you from the beginning and won't let go -- largely because of its narrator, fourteen-year-old Lily Owens, motherless and wise beyond her years.
August is probably my favorite of the trio; she keeps everything humming along at the farm with her own special brand of industry and understanding.
In fact, the restorative power of honey is so varied and abundant in this novel you may well want to buy a whole case of it when you're done reading.
Taken in by an eccentric trio of black beekeeping sisters, Lily is introduced to their mesmerizing world of bees and honey, and the Black Madonna. In Kidd's gifted hands, Lily manages to be both sassy and sweet, part civil rights advocate and part poet.
This is a remarkable novel about divine female power, a story women will share and pass on to their daughters for years to come. Where else can you find a girl who imagines Mother Nature looking a lot "like Eleanor Roosevelt" and who sees dragonflies "stitching up the air"?
The rhythms of the South, the melodic buzzing of bees, the sweet taste of honey from the honey farm Lily visits -- all these things come together to form a character unto itself, as rich as any of the feisty women who inhabit the novel.



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