Little Bee by Chris Cleave- 266 pages
Little Bee, a young Nigerian refugee, has just been released from the British immigration detention center where she has been held under horrific conditions for the past two years, after narrowly escaping a traumatic fate in her homeland of Nigeria. Alone in a foreign country, without a family member, friend, or pound to call her own, she seeks out the only English person she knows. Sarah is a posh young mother and magazine editor with whom Little Bee shares a dark and tumultuous past. They first met on a beach in Nigeria, where Sarah was vacationing with her husband, Andrew, in an effort to save their marriage after an affair, and their brief encounter has haunted each woman for two years. Now together, they face a disturbing past and an uncertain future with the help of Sarah’s four-year-old son, Charlie, who refuses to take off his Batman costume. A sense of humor and an unflinching moral compass allow each woman, and the reader, to believe that even in the face of unspeakable odds, humanity can prevail.
My Review: 4 stars
Little Bee took hold of my heart. I really liked this story of humanity. Each voice was unique and believable so much that I was wondering what happened to them after the book ended.
This author took on a different storyline which I appreciate and this book will lead to great discussions in book clubs. Themes such as courage, marriage, immigration and what lengths one would go to save someone else were all knitted into the story.
There are some difficult scenes to read as we learn about Little Bee’s life in Nigeria. Quite sad. Highly recommend this book.
Quotes I liked:
Because take it from me, a scar does not form on the dying. A scar means, ‘I survived’.”
-“I could not stop talking because now I had started my story, it wanted to be finished. We cannot choose where to start and stop. Our stories are the tellers of us. ”
-“Sad words are just another beauty. A sad story means, this storyteller is alive.”
-“I’m telling you, trouble is like the ocean. It covers two thirds of the world.”“You travel here and you travel there, trying to get out from under the cloud, and nothing works, and then one day you realize you’ve been carrying the weather around with you.”