A well written coming of age novel that in was quite moving in parts. For me the initial third of the book felt quite innocent like a childrens novel so as I progressed through the story I was expecting things to be resolved and to end well - which doesn't always happen. As with life (and I suppose in a bees life) you take the good and the bad in equal measures. What had happened to the character Zach was saddening, but one of the novels themes is moving on and growing up and this was but one example.
I was really hopeful that I was going to love this book. A friend read it and said she sobbed at the end.
No such reaction from me I'm afraid. I wasn't really a big fan. It was OK to read, and I didn't struggle to finish it, but I kept waiting for something more to happen. It just seemed to limp along without really having any oomph.
I couldn't quite get to grips on why the father was so horrible to her either. He seemed to take pleasure in disliking her whereas I could have understood him ignoring her.
I really enjoyed this book - I was drawn in from the first page and really felt for the narrator. It was both sad and funny at the same time; easy to read and well written.
I was also expecting the ending to be more resolved than it was. I was sure that Lily would find out that she hadn't killed her mother after all and that her father had murdered her; even after he'd told Lily that she'd killed her mother accidentally, I still had my doubts.
Overall a heartwarming read despite some sad and serious themes.
This book started out well for me, I engaged with the characters of Lily and Rosaleen, and the events that lead to them going on the run are well written and evocative of the time and place. Once they went on the run I started to find it a little bit far fetched, they found the beekeeping sisters rather easily and I found the whole Daughters of Mary part of the story a little unbelievable, however the story of sad May was believable and moving. The character of Zach could have been developed more after his own involvement in racial tensions as regards the ending, I agree with Linzer. If I had to sum it up, I would say the book was a little too simplistic and straightforward for me, I would have liked it to be a bit longer, more in-depth, maybe a few more twists and turns.