The author of Those Shoes and an award-winning illustrator team up for the story of a girl who tries to overcome her fear of bees to see how amazing they are.
Kaia is the brave type. Like hottest-hot-pepper brave. But there is one thing that scares her: BEES! And right now, thousands of bees live on her roof because Kaia’s dad is a beekeeper. Her dad says that the world needs bees and that’s why they are beekeepers. But only he goes on the roof, not Kaia — unless she can find a way to be the brave girl she always says she is. Against a sunny city setting, author Maribeth Boelts and illustrator Angela Dominguez depict Kaia’s small courageous steps — and her tiny insect neighbors — with great empathy and charm. Buzzing with storytime potential, Kaia and the Bees is an honest and relatable tale about bravery and compassion, as well as the importance of bees to our world.
About the Author
Maribeth Boelts is the author of many books for young readers, including Happy Like Soccer, illustrated by Lauren Castillo, and Those Shoes and A Bike Like Sergio’s, both illustrated by Noah Z. Jones. Maribeth Boelts lives in Iowa.
Angela Dominguez has created many books for young readers, including Maria Had a Little Llama, a Pura Belpré Illustrator Award Honor Book. She also illustrated Mango, Abuela, and Me, written by Meg Medina. Angela Dominguez lives on the East Coast.
Beekeeper Boelts infuses her narrative with both appropriate vocabulary and empathy...Dominguez accurately depicts apiary equipment and practices in her friendly cartoons, and she peoples the story with a diverse cast not typically seen in kids' books about beekeeping. Kaia is biracial, with a black dad and white mom. Could be just the ticket for turning bee-phobes into beekeepers. —Kirkus Reviews
Kids will relate to Kaia’s fear and her determination to be brave. Although she understands bees’ importance in the environment and knows that she has her father’s support, she finds courage only when she begins to consider the bees’ viewpoint. An introduction to bees emerges through the natural- sounding dialogue in this expressive picture book. —Booklist
The book effectively evokes the physicality of anxiety (“I get twisty inside”) and respects the fact that getting over a fear isn’t a one-time thing but often requires some mental negotiation and patience...this might give the kid who screeches at the slightest buzz a pause before wildly swatting the air. —Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books
Warm mixed-media cartoon illustrations depict a loving (biracial) family in a cozy urban home where greenery flourishes both inside and out. Bold outlines convey Kaia's large emotions, while the narrative intersperses basic facts about the lives and work of honeybees. —The Horn Book