'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
- author Jackie French

Monday 15 July 2019

Review: The Bee Book

Who is not interested in bees? They are hard-working insects with interesting lives.  

In 2018, the number of domesticated hives was between 80 million and 100 million, each of them containing 10,000 to 60,000 bees. Bees cross-pollinate approximately 30 per cent of the world’s crops and 90 per cent of wild plants. 

Our lives depend on them. Under 22 sub-headings in The Bee Book, we learn a great deal about these precious insects of which there are 20,000 different species. The most famous is the honey bee.

In this beautifully designed life story of bees, illustrated in colourful images and presented in stunning sequences, children and adults can learn about bees and how they communicate.  How they collect pollen, what they use it for and how they survive during the cold seasons are the starters for the host of information contained within the 47 pages.

Only the female bee stings. The reason it dies when it stings us, is because the stinger has jagged spikes that get stuck in the skin and pulled out of the bee. Bees can’t survive without their stinger. The queen bee is an exception to this rule. She can sting repeatedly without any threat to her.

This excellent book is a must-have for any library – school or home. It talks about the relationship between bees and beekeepers and explains what is happening in the hive. It describes all the different types of bees and their roles in life. The life-span and role of the queen bee is dissected and how she controls whether an egg will hatch into a worker bee (female) or a drone (male). Then there are the many roles of the worker bees, how the bees make honey, and the process they follow.

What is a swarm and why does it form? Which animals eats honey bees and why are they declining? Bees also help support a wide range of wildlife. What would happen without this support? There are countless facts and statistics in this amazing book. You will never again view bees in a negative way after learning about their lives and how necessary they are to the whole planet.

Finally, there is what you can do to help which covers of tips about bee friendly plants, becoming more knowledgeable about bees and certainly, learning not to be afraid of them.

This valuable book will initiate conversation between teachers and children, parents and children, children and children, and give birth to a bee conscience so they can be conscious of what bees offer to all living things.

Title: The Bee Book
Author: Charlotte Milner
Publisher: DK, $24.99
Publication Date: October 2018
Format: Hardcover
ISBN: 9780143769897
For ages: 8+
Type: Non-fiction