Analysis of The Secret Life of Bees

626 WordsFeb 21, 20182 Pages
The Secret Life of Bees begins in the town of Sylvan, South Carolina and tells the story of 14-year-old Lily Melissa Owens. She lives on a peach orchard with her neglectful and abusive father, T. Ray. They have Black maid named Rosaleen who is a companion and caretaker of Lily. The book opens with Lily's discovery of bees in her bedroom and the story of how she killed her mother. The eve before her birthday Lily sneaks out into the peach orchard to visit the box of her mother’s belongings which is buried there however before she can hide them T. Ray finds her and punishes her. The next day Rosaleen and Lily head into town where Rosaleen is arrested for pouring her bottle of tobacco spit on three white men. Lily breaks her out of prison and they begin hitchhiking toward Tiburon, SC, a town Lily had seen on the back of a picture of a black Virgin Mary which her mom had owned. They hitch a ride to Tiburon and once there, they buy lunch at a general store, and Lily sees a picture of the same Virgin Mary on a jar of honey. She asks the store owner where it came from and he gives her directions to the Boatwright house. They then meet the makers of the honey: August, May and June Boatwright, who are all black. Lily makes up a wild story about being recently orphaned. The sisters welcome Rosaleen and Lily into their home. They are then introduced to beekeeping and the Boatwright’s way of life. Lily learns more about the Black Madonna honey that the sisters make. She begins working
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