Little Bee

Cleave, Chris

Book - 2009
Average Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5.
Little Bee
A haunting novel about the tenuous friendship that blooms between two disparate strangers--one an illegal Nigerian refugee, the other a recent widow from suburban London.

Publisher: New York : Simon & Schuster, 2009.
Edition: 1st Simon & Schuster hardcover ed.
ISBN: 9781416589631
Characteristics: 271 p. ;,24 cm.


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Feb 10, 2015
  • JCLLeslieN rated this: 0.5 stars out of 5.

This book wants to be Kite Runner, but this one's violent scene is unnecessarily evil and detracts from the rest of the book. You have to know how much is enough to get your point across.

Jan 12, 2015
  • Mothercat rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

Ohhhh ... what a sad little story. Enjoyable, nonetheless, and yes, I would recommend it.

Jan 12, 2015
  • mythoughts rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

I don't throw out five stars easily, but this is one powerful book. Every sentence is beautiful, and the storyline is so compelling. Best book I've read in a long time.

Jul 07, 2014
  • dkfjasdlkfjalk rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

Some of the descriptive writing was too graphic. The book never said how she was picked up and placed in the detention center.

Jun 11, 2014

Found that the book started out very strongly with many interesting characters but the last part fizzled out with an unsatisfying ending.
I would still recommend reading due to the educational aspects of the story and the wonderfully developed title character.

Apr 08, 2014
  • Pisinga rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

I would say that, despite of some episodes of strong cruelty, described in this book, the language used to describe them, if I may say so with respect to the human tragedies, is calm and peaceful. At the same time, these episodes leave a deep impression after reading.

Mar 16, 2014

"In an effort to revive their flagging marriage, British couple Sarah and Andrew O'Rourke travelled to Nigeria for a beach vacation, never expecting the machete-wielding rebels who appeared, threatening the lives of two young local girls. Years later, Little Bee, one of the two girls that Andrew and Sarah encountered that night, has entered England illegally, pinning her hopes for the future on Sarah and Andrew. A precarious friendship forms between Sarah and Little Bee; their moving and tension-filled stories are told from the alternating and disparate perspectives of both women. Insightful and provocative, Little Bee, also published with the title The Other Hand, offers "plenty of moral dilemmas [that] add up to a satisfying, emotional read" (Library Journal)." Fiction A to Z March 2014 newsletter

Oct 09, 2013
  • Jane60201 rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

I thought the book was very well written but thought the end was kind of contrived and not as believable as the rest. I especially liked Little Bee's thoughts on how her kin would picture the Western world.

Sep 28, 2013
  • jeaneneharlick rated this: 2.5 stars out of 5.

I couldn't love this book. It's well written, and it's a story that needs to be told, but for me it was too realistically dark and intense. A matter of taste, not quality; I highly recommend it to people who enjoy this sort of thing.

Jun 01, 2013

This book is a true experience. I absolutely devoured it. I loved the plot, the unexpected twists and turns, and Cleave is able to slip easily between the two narration styles. I was more affected emotionally from this book than from any other in recent memory. A must-read.

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May 06, 2014

MOST DAYS I WISH I was a British pound coin instead of an African girl. Everyone would be pleased to see me coming. Maybe I would visit with you for the weekend and then suddenly, because I am fickle like that, I would visit with the man from the corner shop instead—but you would not be sad because you would be eating a cinnamon bun, or drinking a cold Coca-Cola from the can, and you would never think of me again. We would be happy, like lovers who met on holiday and forgot each other’s names.

Apr 16, 2011
  • ndp21f rated this: 3.5 stars out of 5.

If the men come suddenly, I will be ready to kill myself. Do you feel sorry for me, for thinking always in this way? If the men come and they find you not ready, then it will be me who is feeling sorry for you.

Apr 16, 2011
  • ndp21f rated this: 3.5 stars out of 5.

I ask you right here please to agree with me that a scar is never ugly. That is what the scar makers want us to think. But you and I, we must make an agreement to defy them. We must see all scars as beauty. Okay? This will be our secret. Because take it from me, a scar does not form on the dying. A scar means, I survived.

Apr 16, 2011
  • ndp21f rated this: 3.5 stars out of 5.

How I would love to be a British pound. A pound is free to travel to safety, and we are free to watch it go. This is the human triumph. This is called, globalization. A girl like me gets stopped at immigration, but a pound can leap the turnstiles, and dodge the tackles of those big men with their uniform caps, and jump straight into a waiting airport taxi. Where to, sir? Western Civilization, my good man, and make it snappy.


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