Book Review: The Beekeeper of Aleppo by Christy Lefteri

“sometimes we create such powerful illusions, so that we do not get lost in the dark” 


In the midst of war, he found love 
In the midst of darkness, he found courage 
In the midst of tragedy, he found hope 
The Beekeeper of Aleppo 
What will you find from his story? 
Nuri is a beekeeper; his wife, Afra, an artist. They live a simple life, rich in family and friends, in the beautiful Syrian city of Aleppo – until the unthinkable happens. When all they care for is destroyed by war, they are forced to escape. But what Afra has seen is so terrible she has gone blind, and so they must embark on a perilous journey through Turkey and Greece towards an uncertain future in Britain. On the way, Nuri is sustained by the knowledge that waiting for them is Mustafa, his cousin and business partner, who has started an apiary and is teaching fellow refugees in Yorkshire to keep bees.  
As Nuri and Afra travel through a broken world, they must confront not only the pain of their own unspeakable loss, but dangers that would overwhelm the bravest of souls. Above all – and perhaps this is the hardest thing they face – they must journey to find each other again. 
Moving, powerful, compassionate and beautifully written, The Beekeeper of Aleppo is a testament to the triumph of the human spirit. Told with deceptive simplicity, it is the kind of book that reminds us of the power of storytelling. 

My Review:

The story begins with Afra and Nuri in Britain, we are swiftly whisked away by the author too far off lands where the journey, and all the trouble began. The book is beautifully written and is very descriptive, which painted the picture of the main characters and the places they passed through vividly.  

The story is narrated through the eyes of Nuri, a beekeeper in Aleppo. The further into the book I got the more trauma I realised this person had endured; this was shown rather than told which worked brilliantly in line with the human instinct to deny that something is wrong. Comparatively, the further I got into the book the more I realised the strength of Afra’s spirit.  

The story was fast paced and easy to read, not only that the plot was clearly well planned as too much information was never revealed at once, rather the details were weaved together slowly so that all the silks began to make a clear web.  

My only critique is the structure of the story. The chapters jump from present day to a chronological point on the journey, and this sometimes became a little confusing. Further, in each chapter there is a word within a motif that singularly ends and begins a portion of time, this is just personal preference but I didn’t feel like it added anything to the book and if anything made it feel disjointed.  

This is such a topical book for many of us who see news about Syrian refugees regularly. This book has shown me what I see on the news but from the perspective of a refugee, which has been a real eyeopener.  

I really recommend that you read this book if you have any interest in a politically relevant modern-day fiction. I have a feeling I will be thinking about this one for a long time.  

Happy Reading Friends.  

My Rating: 3.7/5

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2 thoughts on “Book Review: The Beekeeper of Aleppo by Christy Lefteri

  1. I loved this book! I felt it spoke so much on a level for immigrants and the struggle to just go somewhere safe, and I hope that so many people read this, I really enjoyed reading your review of it and seeing your take!


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