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|Honeybees and frenemies|
Author: Wientge, Kristi
Twelve-year-old Flor faces problems at home while spending a summer working at her parents' store, partnering with former friend Candice for a pageant, and volunteering with a reclusive beekeeper.
|Accelerated Reader Information:|
Interest Level: MG
Reading Level: 5.50
Points: 8.0 Quiz: 503393
Kirkus Reviews (05/01/19)
School Library Journal (00/04/19)
Full Text Reviews:
School Library Journal - 04/01/2019 Gr 4–7—It's the summer before eighth grade, and 12-year-old Flor faces much uncertainty and unease. Instead of the fun, relaxing summer she was imagining, Flor must deal with her best friend Brooke spending the summer away at Band Camp (and likely finding new besties), while she is stuck working at her family's mattress store dressed up as a giant mattress. To make matters worse, it's Honeydale's 50th annual Honey Festival, and all prior Queen Bees are expected to compete for this year's title. This pairs Flor with her arch enemy, Candice, who has despised her since Flor won the coveted title when they were in third grade. Candice and Flor are forced to work together to develop a talent for the show, while also performing community service for mysterious hermit Mr. Henry. Curmudgeonly Mr. Henry has the girls assist him with his plentiful, but ill, bee hives. Throughout the summer, Mr. Henry thaws, and Candice and Flor find they might just get past being frenemies and become real friends. Candice and Flor both want the prize-winning money for being Queen Bee, even if it means learning all about bees and having Flor wear a "bee beard" for their talent. If they win, Flor might just convince her parents to stay in Honeydale, rather than moving away to New Jersey and abandoning their suffering mattress business. Wientge has created spirted, realistic characters that readers will root for and identify with. Each chapter begins with a fascinating random bee fact. VERDICT Readers will enjoy this satisfying tale while learning about bees and complicated friendships; expect buzz for future titles from this author.—Michele Shaw, Quail Run Elementary School, San Ramon, CA - Copyright 2019 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.
Booklist - 09/01/2019 Summer brings more than 12-year-old Florence bargains for when she must participate in Honeydale’s Honey Festival, which includes service projects with her sister, Fran, and former best friend Candice. To top it off, Flor’s dad’s mattress store is losing money, her parents are arguing constantly, and rumors are buzzing that her family might move from Honeydale to New Jersey! Anger, jealousy, and frustration complicate Flor’s days as she tries to find ways to cooperate with Candice. After their attempt at a piano-and-recorder duet for the honey pageant fizzles, the girls come up with an unusual idea: “bee beards.” Utilizing their connections with Mr. Henry, the beekeeper for whom they’re doing volunteer work, they learn so much about bees, including the “Random Bee Facts” that begin each chapter. As the summer progresses, Flor and Candice find ways to mend their fractured relationship. Wientge (Karma Khullar’s Mustache, 2017) captures the essence of middle-grade friendships, as well as changing family dynamics, in this honey-sweet summer read. - Copyright 2019 Booklist.