The Hive by Gill Hornby

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The year turns, the community shifts, and like the bees, one queen supplants another. A tissue-thin saga of small-town relationships redeemed by its humor and rapid-fire exchanges.
-Kirkus

Synopsis

There's only room for one Queen Bee: A hilarious and touching novel about the social world of school mothers.

It's the start of another school year at St. Ambrose. While the children are busy in the classroom, their mothers are learning sharper lessons. Lessons in friendship. Lessons in betrayal. Lessons in the laws of community, the transience of power...and how to get invited to lunch.

Beatrice -- undisputed queen bee. Ruler, by Divine Right, of all school fundraising, this year, last year, and, surely, for many to come.

Heather -- desperate to volunteer, desperate to be noticed, desperate to belong.

Georgie -- desperate for a cigarette.

And Rachel -- watching them all, keeping her distance. But soon to discover taht the line between amused observer and miserable outcast is a thin one.

THE HIVE is a wickedly funny and brilliantly observed story about female friendship, power plays, and the joys and perils (well, mainly perils) of trying to do one's part.
 

About Gill Hornby

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Gill Hornby is a writer and journalist. She lives with her husband, Robert Harris, and their four children, in Kintbury, Berkshire (UK). The Hive is her first novel.
 
Published September 10, 2013 by Little, Brown and Company. 353 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction. Fiction
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Critic reviews for The Hive
All: 3 | Positive: 3 | Negative: 0

Kirkus

Above average
on Jul 19 2013

The year turns, the community shifts, and like the bees, one queen supplants another. A tissue-thin saga of small-town relationships redeemed by its humor and rapid-fire exchanges.

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Guardian

Good
Reviewed by Jenny Turner on May 22 2013

Hornby's debut novel, it says on the cover, is "already a sensation", "the book every publisher wanted". It deserves all of it really, for the richness of the concept.

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Financial Times

Good
Reviewed by Isabel Berwick on May 24 2013

Hornby nails the quiet heartbreak and misery that many women endure in middle-age; as well as the funny, friendly, neurosis-inducing mess that is primary school life.

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Reader Rating for The Hive
52%

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