Telling the Bees

Telling the Bees

Book - 2013
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Albert Honig's most constant companions have always been his bees. A never-married octogenarian, still residing in the house in which he was born, Albert makes a modest living as a beekeeper, just as his father and his father's father had done before him. Deeply acquainted with the ways and workings of the hives, he knows that bees dislike wool clothing and foul language; that the sweetest honey is made from the blooms of the eucalyptus; and that bees are at their gentlest in a swarm. But Albert is less versed in the ways of people, especially his beautiful, courageous, and secretive friend Claire.
Publisher: New York : G.P. Putnam's Sons, c2013.
ISBN: 9780399159053
Characteristics: 307 p. ;,24 cm.


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gracindaisy Jan 27, 2014

A story of beekeeping and friendship and the far-reaching consequences of words left unspoken, the persistence of regret and the power of truth both to wound and to heal.

Jun 17, 2013

The intertwined lives of two neighbours: one has lived in the same house all his life, five miles from the Pacific Ocean he doesn't regret never having seen. The other is a bright outsider determined to break free of a stifling family who gains a brief freedom with lifelong consequences. They are united only by an improbable friendship and a love of bees. This slow, tender novel is told in the careful, fussy voice of Albert, the homebody. It can take some getting used to, but it pays off in moments of sadness, joy, and wistful beauty. Sometimes the narrator seems a little thinly realized compared to his sparky neighbour, but he is in the end a compelling voice. I'm surprised at how quickly I finished this one.

ChristchurchLib May 20, 2013

"An 80 year-old, third-generation beekeeper who relates better to the constant companions in his hives than most people must come to terms with the loss of his long-time friend, Claire, who was killed during a burglary gone awry." May 2013 Fiction A to Z newsletter

A fascinating novel that some critics likened to Kazuo Ishiguro’s wonderful novel The remains of the day. Instead of a butler we have a quiet bachelor who keeps bees in his California garden. His discovery of a murder of neighbouring sisters and shared memories of his earlier life are quietly and gradually revealed in a sad and beautifully written novel.

hgeng63 Apr 13, 2013

Okay if you like bees, though the revelation is not that groundshaking & the protagonist is a bit wimpy & undeveloped.

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