The Bees

Author(s): Laline Paull

General

The Handmaid's Tale meets The Hunger Games in this brilliantly imagined debut. Born into the lowest class of her society, Flora 717 is a sanitation bee, only fit to clean her orchard hive. Living to accept, obey and serve, she is prepared to sacrifice everything for her beloved holy mother, the Queen. But Flora is not like other bees.


Despite her ugliness she has talents that are not typical of her kin. While mutant bees are usually instantly destroyed, Flora is removed from sanitation duty and is allowed to feed the newborns, before becoming a forager, collecting pollen on the wing. She also finds her way into the Queen's inner sanctum, where she discovers secrets both sublime and ominous. But enemies are everywhere, from the fearsome fertility police to the high priestesses who jealously guard the Hive Mind. And when Flora breaks the most sacred law of all her instinct to serve is overshadowed by an even deeper desire, a fierce maternal love that will lead to the unthinkable ...Laline Paull's chilling yet ultimately triumphant novel creates a luminous world both alien and uncannily familiar.


Thrilling and imaginative, 'The Bees' is the story of a heroine who, in the face of an increasingly desperate struggle for survival, changes her destiny and her world.

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Product Information

Shortlisted for the 2015 Baileys Women's Prize for Fiction.

'The Bees is an extraordinary feat of imagination, conjuring the life of a beehive in gripping, passionate and brilliant detail. With every page I turned, I found myself drawn deeper into Flora's plight and her immersive, mesmerizing world.' Madeline Miller, author of The Song of Achilles

'The Bees is one wild ride. A sensual, visceral mini-epic about timeless rituals and modern environmental disaster. Paull's heartpounding novel wrenches us into a new world.' Emma Donoghue, author of Room

Laline Paull, 49, studied English at Oxford, screenwriting in Los Angeles, and theatre in London, where she has had two plays performed at the Royal National Theatre. She is a member of BAFTA and the Writers' Guild of America. She lives in England by the sea with her husband, the photographer Adrian Peacock, and their three children.

General Fields

  • : 9780007558506
  • : HarperCollins Publishers
  • : Fourth Estate Ltd
  • : December 2013
  • : 216mm X 135mm
  • : United Kingdom
  • : May 2014
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : Laline Paull
  • : Paperback
  • : 415
  • : 304