Am I Even a Bee?


Felicity Muth with Illustrations by Alexa Lindauer
Baobab Press, £14.50

Am I Even a Bee? follows one bee's journey of discovery and self-reflection. Osmia, a solitary bee, is confused. Her mum told her she was a bee, but she looks nothing like the honeybees and bumblebees flying around the meadow. She begins to ponder if she’s even a bee at all. Fortunately, Osmia chances upon Xyla, a giant carpenter bee, who guides her through their meadow teaching her about all the different bees that live there. Osmia soon learns that there is more than one way to be a bee, and in-doing so showcases the reader to the stunning diversity of bees that often go unnoticed in our back gardens.

With beautiful illustrations and a charming storyline Am I even a bee is a children’s book that both children and parents will delight in. Recommended for children age 3-8 years (although my 1-year-old loves it), the book is also accurate (well as accurate as a children’s book with talking bees can be!). Written and illustrated by biologists who are passionate about conservation and education, the illustrations are anatomically correct and the storyline is fun and engaging.

The book also teaches children that there are a wide variety of different species of bee in the world. As a bee biologist I can testify that even most adults are not aware of this fact. This book will help to ensure that the next generation is more bee-informed than their parents. In world where biodiversity is increasingly threatened this can only be a good thing.

Dr Harry Siviter