THE HISTORY OF BEES by Maja Lunde, Simon & Schuster.
What happens when the last bee dies? We will lose not just our honey, but our chief spreaders of pollen; soon the flowers will go, then trees, and then...? Lunde’s first adult novel tells a dire story of environmental collapse spanning more than two centuries, jumping between three generations of beekeepers. In the 1850s, biologist William is planning a new type of beehive. George, in 2007, is waging a battle against the modern farming practices blighting his hives. While in China, in the year 2098, a young boy disappears and is found close to death, but the all-powerful government will not return the boy to his frantic parents. Lunde interlaces her stories well and Bees has been a best-seller in Europe – a well-written novel which I finished with only an acceptable sense of being slightly harangued.