Wednesday, April 15, 2015

The Beekeeper's Daughter

I just finished reading The Beekeeper’s Daughter by Santa Montefiore.  The book starts out in 1973 on Tekanasset Island, Massachusetts.  Trixie (Beatrix) Valentine is 19 years old and is eagerly sowing her wild oats!  Trixie is headstrong and rebellious.  She is in love with Jasper Duncliffe.  Jasper is British and the second son (which means he does not inherit the estate or title unless something happens to his brother).  He is also an up and coming rock musician and singer.  Trixie is always sneaking off to spend time with him.  Jasper is going to go on tour in the fall and Trixie wants to go with him (instead of going to college).  Everything is rosy until Jasper receives word that his older brother died in an accident.  Jasper has to return home to Walbridge.  Trixie wants to go with him, but Jasper asks her to wait and he will send for her.  They exchange letters (remember it is 1973 and people still communicate via snail mail) frequently at first and then slowly Jasper’s letters slow down to a small trickle.  Then the last letter arrives breaking things off between them.  Trixie is crushed.  She leaves the island for New York and a career in fashion journalism. 

Grace Hamblin Valentine is Trixie’s mother.  Grace and her husband, Freddie are originally from Walbridge (in England).  They moved to the island after World War II.  Grace remembers her time in Walbridge with her father and Rufus Melville.  Grace goes back to 1932 and remembers when she met Rufus.  The book goes back and forth between 1973 and the 1930’s.  We learn about Grace’s father, growing up learning about bees and gardening, a love of literature and falling in love.

Trixie’s parents never talk about their past or where they grew up.  In 1990 Trixie decides to find out more about them and visits Walbridge.  What Trixie uncovers not only helps her but her parents.

I give The Beekeeper’s Daughter  3 out of 5 stars.  I found the book to be long.  Longer than it needed to be.  With some editing, I think this could be a much better book.  I started enjoying The Beekeeper’s Daughter more in the second half of the book (it is just getting to that part that is hard). 

I received a complimentary copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Thank you for checking out my latest review!  I am currently reading Memory House by Bette Lee Crosby and I am loving it.  I am off to finish reading it.  Have a lovely evening and Happy Reading!


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