“Livy Little Honey Bee” by Celia Straus

“Livy Little Honey Bee” by Celia Straus 819 1024 Reader Views Kids

Livy Little Honey Bee

Celia Straus
Leschenault Press (2023)
ISBN: 978-1923020016
Reviewed by Diana Coyle for Reader Views (09/2023)

When Livy, the little honey bee, gets in trouble for not working as hard as the other little honey bees in her hive, she has to answer to the Queen explaining why she isn’t working to her potential in “Livy Little Honey Bee” by author Celia Straus. She explains that she has so much fun flying around looking at all the colorful flowers that she doesn’t really want to collect pollen and nectar like her fellow honey bees. She also tells the Queen that she wants to be just as colorful as some of the beautiful flowers she finds while flying around. The Queen has a hard decision to make regarding what to do with Livy. Does the Queen tell Livy that she must collect pollen and nectar like the other honey bees in the hive? Or does the Queen allow Livy to do another job that’s more appealing to her?

I absolutely adored this children’s story, so much so that I found myself smiling as I turned the pages. The illustrations were fun to look at while I read along with the silly antics Livy was doing while her fellow honey bee friends were working hard to pick up the pollen and nectar the hive needed in order to sustain itself. I loved Livy’s individuality throughout the story and I had hoped the Queen would be lenient in whatever decision she made toward Livy. I wanted Livy to have fun, but I also understood that the hive depended on each honey bee to do its job of sustaining the hive community.

I laughed out loud when I read that Livy wanted to be rainbow-colored instead of the standard yellow and black of honey bees. I thought about it, and I couldn’t really think of any reason why bees had to be the standard yellow and black colors they are. So, I cheered Livy on when the Queen granted her a new rainbow-colored body. I applauded Livy for wanting to be an individual and standing up for her rights as to why she wanted it so badly.

I feel this is a great story not only to teach children to be individuals and to be proud of standing out in a crowd but also the main theme of how important it is for honey bees to pollinate to sustain their productive bee hives. I feel children will enjoy the great storyline as they follow along on Livy’s adventure. Plus, they also get to understand what it’s like working as a team to produce one common goal together.

Overall, I really enjoyed Livy’s story and think children will too. Although “Livy Little Honey Bee” doesn’t mention a specific children’s age group, I would say it’s aimed at the lower grades for the easy storyline they are reading. I also feel they will love the colorful illustrations done by Mira Hirabayashi, which only enhance Livy’s story. I highly recommend this book. Well done, ladies!      

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