When the Bees Buzzed Off!

When the Bees Buzzed Off!
Lula Bell and Stephen Bennett
Little Tiger Press

Bees play a vital role in the natural world and now the creators of this picture book are helping to put the message across to young children through a ‘play along’ story.
On a warm sunny day in the garden there’s consternation among the other minibeasts: the bees are nowhere to be seen; without them how will vital pollination take place?
A decision is made: three of the bravest and cleverest, Snail, Beetle and Worm, set off on a bee search. They stop at the vegetable patch, the woodpile and the pond but of bees there is no sign.

Suddenly, having gone through a gap in the fence into the woodland nearby they hear a familiar, much welcome sound. In a clearing full of flowers are the objects of their hunt ready to explain why they’ve had to move elsewhere.

With its plethora of speech bubbles, Lula Bell’s gently humorous story will help young children understand how important bees are. In fact the bees themselves do much of the talking but they’ve hidden themselves away under flaps in the illustrations for readers to find. Stephen Bell echoes the humour in his busy mixed media scenes of the natural world in and around the garden.

I hope that children will do what those bee-hunting bugs do at the end of the story and plant some bee friendly seeds in their gardens; or perhaps create a bee-friendly patch in their school grounds.

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