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Lost in the Beehive

4.07  ·  Rating details ·  634 ratings  ·  142 reviews
From the author of Above Us Only Sky and The Handbook for Lightning Strike Survivors, a touching new novel set in the 1960s about the power of friendship, love, and accepting your past in order to find a future.

For nearly her entire life, Gloria Ricci has been followed by bees.

They’re there when her mother loses twin children; when she first meets a neighborhood girl named
Paperback, 320 pages
Published April 10th 2018 by Simon Schuster
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Average rating 4.07  · 
Rating details
 ·  634 ratings  ·  142 reviews

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Elyse  Walters
Apr 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
There are a few times when a new movie comes out - I see the trailer - the cast is great - but the trailer doesn’t look like anything special. “Three Billboards” is a perfect example for me. Then I ‘saw’ the movie ( and not right away - it took a friend telling me to ‘go’)- it was so outstanding- I saw it twice. Looking ‘back’ at the trailer ‘after’ having seen the movie- it looks better to me - but still does not do the movie justice.

That’s how I feel about “Lost in the Beehive”. The name of t
Feb 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
An absolute triumph! This book hit me right in the feels..

🐝🐝🐝🐝🐝 Buzzzzworthy stars!

The bee is a miraculous creature:
it defies the laws of gravity and aerodynamics,
carrying three times its own body weight,
flapping its wings over two hundred beats per second.
It is a creature not just of this world, but of the world to come.
Pay attention to the bees. You might learn something.

-Madame Zelda

Lost in the Beehive was an allegory with magical realism at its core. These facets are not typically what motiv
Apr 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
As this story begins, a young, teenage Gloria Ricci is being driven by her parents to an institute to be treated for her “abnormal” desires and her choice of companions.

”My mother leaned over the seat back in her cat-eye sunglasses. ‘You’ll get better at this place. They’re going to make you like everybody else.’”

It was 1965, a year after the Beatles first American tour, a year after the first Civil Rights Act, and Rock’em Sock’em Robots were one of the top selling toys, Cassius Clay beat S
Sep 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book was simply wonderful!

"For nearly her entire life, Gloria Ricci has been followed by bees."

Gloria Ricci is caught in an intimate act with a young woman named Isabel at the beginning of the book. Believing that they are doing the right thing, Gloria's parents admit her to the Belmont Institute. It's a place with a pretty brochure but is extremely ugly on the inside. It is a place meant to "cure" teens who are attracted to members of the same sex. The teen years are usually when people b
Apr 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
A beautiful, fast paced novel, a heartbreaking yet redeeming story about love and staying true to yourself. These characters, you will remember!! Awesome read!

Thank you to Simon & Schuster through NetGalley!
Jennifer ~ TarHeelReader
🐝 5 bee-utiful stars to Lost in Beehive! 🐝 ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️

I can’t wait to tell you about this book!

Gloria Ricci, main character and teenager, finds herself in an institute being “treated” for her feelings toward her best friend, Isabel. At the open of the book, Gloria is dropped off at the Belmont Institute by her seemingly loving parents. In the 1960s, many aspects of typical sexuality were more than taboo; they were incorrectly viewed as mental illness, and as a sign of the times, the Institu
Brenda ~Traveling Sisters Book Reviews
Norma and I were lost with the bees buzzing in the magical, heart and soul lush coulee with Jennifer reading Lost in the Beehive and we have some buzz for you.

Lost in the Beehive is a well-written and heartwarming magical coming of age love story. It’s a love story between friends, partners and love for yourself. It is written with heart and compassion making this a quiet, easy and touching story.

Michele Young-Stone does a fantastic job developing our main character here with Gloria as she str
Sep 26, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: netgalley
Gloria’s parents, still reeling from the loss of their newborn twins, find out their teenage daughter is attracted to girls. It's the 1960's, and out of misguided love and concern, and a desire to protect Gloria from what they anticipate would be a difficult life, they send her to Belmont, a facility that promises to heal and fix what was considered to be her unnatural urges so she could live a ‘normal’ life. There she meets Sheff, a tortured soul who was forced to endure the harsh and cruel env ...more
Apr 14, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
3.5 stars

I loved the beginning of Lost in the Beehive, but then I found that it lost a bit of its strength. It’s still 3.5 stars overall based on the beginning and the topic.

The story starts in the 1960s, when 16 year old Gloria is taken to an institution that is meant to reprogram gay teenagers. Gloria becomes good friends with a gay boy, Scheff. I don’t want to say too much about what happens between Gloria and Scheff to avoid spoilers, but flashing forward a few years Gloria ends up living in
4.5 stars rounded up!

A simply bee-utiful book that had me buzzing with excitement upon finishing to share my thoughts with you! This was some book!

LOST IN THE BEEHIVE by MICHELE YOUNG-STONE was an absolutely beautifully written coming of age/coming out story that touched my heart. It was an enjoyable, spellbinding, and touching story that was extremely hard for me to put down. I was quickly and completely drawn into this simply written, compassionate tale and the main characters in this book. I
Sep 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is a beautiful story with a strong message of what happens when we don’t stay true to ourselves and let others define us. It is a fast-paced novel, simply written, but I somehow got a bit “lost in the beehive” magical aspect of the novel, and I love magical realism. Initially I loved the symbolism of the bees, but their meaning crumbled the last half. It just didn’t work how I had hoped.

I would still recommend this book. It’s a great story with unforgettable characters.

I enjoyed reading th
Oct 03, 2018 rated it liked it
The most beautiful thing about this story is its message of living true to yourself, even if it means risking society’s censure. Gloria is a teenager who has already fallen in love with another young woman, and this story begins after her first broken heart.

The challenges of being gay in the 1960s are the basis for Gloria’s struggles, and as a character I found her to be original and true, her conflicts genuine. Over the course of the story we see her struggle to live the kind of life she think
RoseMary Achey
Feb 12, 2021 rated it really liked it
The material in this book was difficult to read. It dealt with conversion therapy and domestic abuse.

Reparative" or "conversion" therapy is a dangerous practice that targets LGBTQ youth and seeks to change their sexual or gender identities.

So-called “conversion therapy,” sometimes known as “reparative therapy,” is a range of dangerous and discredited practices that falsely claim to change a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity or expression. Such practices have been rejected by every
Apr 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
I received a copy of Lost in the Beehive by Michele Young-Stone in a goodreads give away in exchange for an honest review. This book wrapped its covers around me from page one and wouldn't let me put it down. The story began by giving the reader a glimpse of its ending. Capturing, exciting and alluring! Then it went back in time to tell the story and life of Gloria Ricci.

The story took place in the 1960's and 1970's first in Maryville, Maryland and later in Greeley, North Carolina. From an early
4.5 stars! This was so good! Lost in the Beehive is a fast and easy read, and such a beautiful story. The book starts with Gloria Ricci being attacked by her husband as her young daughter watches, and then quickly cuts to Gloria at 16 in the 1960s, going to an institute that purports to cure homosexuality, after she's caught in the arms of another girl. I don't want to say too much about the rest of the plot, because I think it's best to discover for yourself (though you obviously know from the ...more
Mar 29, 2018 rated it really liked it
Well, this was a very nice book. There’s just something so sincere and well meaning about it that nice comes to mind as the most appropriate adjective. The subject itself, of course, isn’t all that nice, it’s all to do with how the society treats anyone who is different, in this case specifically the gays. Sure, in the present time there’s been some significant progress, rights, etc., but back in what the conservative minds refer to with misdirected nostalgia as the good old days the general men ...more
Feb 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Dec 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: library, lgbtq
All her life, Gloria has been told that her feelings are wrong and that she needs to conform. After an 'incident' with another girl at 16, Gloria is shipped off to Belmont to be cured of her lesbianism. The terrible conditions at the institution leave her with no choice but to promise to be normal, just so she can be released. She takes that promise seriously and spends the next decade pursuing the American Dream, marrying a handsome sweet-talker and moving to a house with a picket fence. But sh ...more
Diane S ☔
Jun 11, 2018 rated it liked it
3.5 review soon.
Oct 07, 2018 rated it really liked it

Absolutely Delightful!

“But I have to explain. I have to stop hiding. When I was at the institute, I met this boy, this amazing boy, who assured me that there was nothing wrong with me. We were born how we were born. We shouldn’t feel guilty or apologize for who we were. I loved him. He made me fight for who I was, for what I believed.”

There is something very special about this story. I laughed. I cried. I shook my head in disgust. I nodded in agreement. The writing is seductively and d
Oct 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018
4.5 stars on this wonderful character-driven, magical realism novel

I went into this book completely blind except for glowing reviews. We meet Gloria Ricci, a strong character that I grew to love and root for with a passion. Gloria is trying to find her place in the world, including her sexuality. Set in the 1960s, she didn’t find much acceptance. In fact, her parents send her to an institution to try to “fix” her. It is there that she meets Sheff and ultimately begins to present herself as the w
Lolly K Dandeneau
Nov 21, 2017 rated it really liked it
I read this way back in November, waiting to post it closer to the release date and guess what, nearly forgot to post my review. Well, just in time for tomorrow's release date! Buy it, read it, talk about it. It's definitly enaging and I am sure bound to start conversations.

via my blog:
"You’ll get better at this place. They’re going to make you like everybody else.”

Nothing scares people more than someone who strays from the ‘norm’ and nothing is more horri
Shereen Lee
Feb 05, 2018 rated it liked it
I received copy of this book from Simon Schuster in exchange for a review. Plot elements mentioned may not be final.

I liked this, although not as much as I might have expected from the amazing synopsis and first few chapters. I couldn't help but think that the characterization of the MC was a little flat: although of course this might be a product of the time period where the book is supposed to take place, Gloria doesn't really seem to have any passions of her own. She's constantly being define
Andrea (formerly Amadeus)
One of the reasons I dislike the phrases “the good old days” and “make America great again” (besides the obvious) is because those days were only best for a subset of Americans. As we see in this book, for years, the LGBTQ community has been subjected to the ridiculousness of “conversion camps”. Not exactly great, America.

I love this book for telling the story of a woman sent to one who then goes through the journey to accept who she really is and finding it good. It felt like a quick read beca
Eileen O'Finlan
Sep 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is a beautifully told story of a young woman attempting to force herself to be someone she's not in order to fit into society and be considered "normal." Set in the late 1960s & 1970s it follows the life of protagonist, Gloria, who discovers early in her adolescence that she is sexually attracted to other girls. Her parents, hoping to change this, send her to an institution that specializes in "fixing" people like Gloria. Her parents do this as much out of love as ignorance because they tru ...more
Fairyland~book review
Feb 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: netgalley
***I received a copy of this book on Netgalley from Simon Schuster in exchange for my Honest review.*** This is my first time reading a book by this author, I will be reading more from them in the future! In the opening Scene Gloria Ricci is being choked, her head is repeatedly being slammed onto the bathroom’s tiled floor, her daughter is screaming for the abuser to quit hurting her mommy, and she blacks out. From this point/ very begenning I was hooked. It bring into light mental illness, and ...more
Aug 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I basically devoured this novel, centered around a young girl who gets sent to a gay conversion camp in the '60s. The story has some truly dark and depressing moments, but there were also a lot of heartwarming elements that made the story delightful instead of dreary. The characters all lifted off the page, and I felt truly invested in the action of the plot. The best part for me was the magical realism element of a hive of bees that follows the main character throughout her life. This had just ...more
Jul 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
Gloria is growing up in the 60's. She gets caught with her girlfriend and is sent to an institution to take the gay out of you. There she meets a boy, Sheff , who is also supposed to be "fixed". This is a wonderful story of love, heartbreak, doing what is expected of you but not being happy and finally accepting yourself and living your life the way you want to. ...more
Apr 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
Great book! Almost 5 stars. Had I not read amazing books right before it, it would probably be a 5star book!
Tracy Finegan
Oct 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book! The bees were such a cool part of this story. I never wanted this book to end.
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Play Book Tag: Lost in the Beehive by Michele Young-Stone 1 10 Sep 26, 2018 01:16PM  

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MICHELE YOUNG-STONE is the author of LOST IN THE BEEHIVE, an O Magazine pick, ABOVE US ONLY SKY, and THE HANDBOOK FOR LIGHTNING STRIKE SURVIVORS. She is currently at work on a fourth novel.

Read excerpts from her novel at

In addition to being a writer, Michele is a mom, wife, animal lover, Zumba and Hip-Hop addict, crafter, Pinterest junkie, and bird watcher. Learn

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