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The Adventures of Maya the Bee

The Adventures of Maya the Bee by Waldemar Bonsels
By: (1880-1952)

A little bee is born in a large and busy hive. At that time, the hive is going through a period of unrest and there are fears that it will become subdivided into separate colonies. The little new-born, Maya, is under the care of a strict but loving teacher. One day, driven by curiosity and rebellion, Maya escapes from the safe environs of the hive and flies into the forest. Here, she encounters all sorts of interesting, exciting, frightening and funny things. The Adventures of Maya the Bee is the story of the intriguing days that follow.

Waldemar Bonsels was a writer who wrote in his native German and The Adventures of Maya the Bee is his only work for children. However, it turned out to be his most famous one.

In The Adventures.. Maya and her friends, Willy the Bee, Mrs Cassandra her teacher, Flip the Grasshopper, Alexander the Mouse, Thekla the Spider, Kurt the Dungbeetle and others form part of the group of creatures whose capers and mischief are charmingly portrayed. In the book, Maya is captured by a gang of villainous hornets and taken to their nest. During her imprisonment, she fortuitously overhears the hornets' plan to attack her own hive and destroy all the bees in it. How she foils the plans and earns the forgiveness of the bees for having run away in the beginning forms the rest of the story. Grown-ups and children can both enjoy this short but sweet book. There have been many critical analyses of The Adventures.. and some have seen it as a political allegory. The original edition contained quite a lot of violence and non-PC references to race and disabilities. However, this new edition has been revised and is free of these.

The book has been adapted extensively for animated series, opera, video games and Maya the Bee merchandise is extremely popular among kids.

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Reviews (Rated: 3 Stars - 1 review)

Reviewer: - June 13, 2015
Subject: maya
Definitely a children's book

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