Kissing the Bee by Kathe Koja
On the library shelves: YA Fiction
AR Reading Level: 5.4
Award: Parent's Choice Award/Honor Book
Recommended for: Grades 9+
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Dana and Avra are seniors in high school planning their senior prom. They're best friends, but they have very different plans for their lives. Dana is planning on going to college, but Avra plans on escaping the night of the prom with her boyfriend Emil. Dana has had a secret crush on Emil, but when she starts to see cracks in Avra's and Emil's relationship, she wonders if the feelings might be reciprocated and if Emil will really go along with Avra's plans.
The bee analogy is woven into this novel appropriately and meaningfully. I detest the cover, but don't let that turn you off from reading a real gem. While I certainly enjoyed the love triangle aspect of the book, what really stuck out to me was the exploration of the friendship between Dana and Avra. I could relate to Dana's feelings about Queen Bee "Avra" in her life, and reading this really brought some emotions to the surface and made me reflective. This short novel is beautifully written and well worth the time.
Also reviewed by: The Book Nest ~ Your link here?
6 hours ago