Honeybee by Craig Silvey

Honeybee by Craig Silvey

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I enjoyed Honeybee, although there was a lot of suspension of disbelief involved. Don’t get me wrong, I like a story where I have to suspend my disbelief and go with it – but as it was aiming to be realistic, there were more than a few times I was drawn out of the story with the thought of, ‘but it doesn’t work that way’.
I loved Honeybee, I liked the character and the growth. I found his lack of communication frustrating but highly believable. I really liked how Vic came into his life, and I liked the choices he made to try and keep people being nice to him.
Aggie was hard to accept as a real person, but I loved her nonetheless! Their friendship was an amazing aspect of the story and I loved her parents for their understated role.
I guess, the part I really struggled with was the mum’s addiction problems and how they were handled and shown. I also struggled with Steve as a character because I found his whole storyline too convenient and too nice for the person he was. His knowledge of Honeybee’s home and the things Honeybee knew, and the contacts Steve was supposed to have – it was all a bit silly how that ended.
In the end, it was a bit of a fairytale, which doesn’t take away from the gorgeous story-writing, and the quite brilliant observations around changing times and acceptance of people for who they are, but the cost of that clashing with old-views and beliefs. It was a great read, and I found it so easy to pick up and continue despite some hard passages.
Another excellent Australian novel that doesn’t revert to harsh landscape references to prove it’s Australian-ness – yay!

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