The Death of Bees (Paperback)

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Staff Reviews

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." ~Miki

— Miki is our book caterer, serving events outside Tattered Cover. Her word is gold.

January 2013 Indie Next List

“Beginning with two children who bury their parents in their garden, The Death of Bees had me hooked from page one. Streetwise teen Marnie and her younger, socially awkward, violin prodigy sister find their parents dead and attempt to cover up their deaths to avoid foster care, with both help and hindrance from some surprising sources. Told from the point of view of multiple characters, this lively, suspenseful, and darkly hilarious tale transfixed me from gruesome start to wonderfully satisfying finish. Brilliant, delightful, and thought provoking!”
— Carol Schneck Varner, Schuler Books & Music, Okemos, MI


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.

As the New Year comes and goes, Lennie, the old man next door, realizes that his young neighbors are alone and need his help. Lennie takes them in--feeds them, clothes them, protects them--and something like a family forms. But soon, 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 ferce 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.

About the Author

Lisa O'Donnell is the nationally bestselling, award-winning author of The Death of Bees. She lives in Los Angeles.
Product Details
ISBN: 9780062209856
ISBN-10: 006220985X
Publisher: Harper Perennial
Publication Date: October 22nd, 2013
Pages: 310
Language: English
Series: P.S.