The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd is the kind of story that sucks you in. Set in South Carolina during the 1960's, it is the story of Lily Owens. Lily has been haunted by the events surrounding the death of her mother when she was 4. Shortly after her 14th birthday she escapes her unloving father's peach farm and breaks her colored nanny out of jail for an adventure to discover more about her mother's past. They end up in the home of the "calendar sisters"- May, June, and August Boatwright. The three colored sisters own a honey business and Lily learns a lot about beekeeping, her mother's past and herself. There are lots of twists and turns throughout the book that I won't spoil for you, but I can tell you that you will fall in love with the characters as they face race relations and heartache, but find strength in themselves and each other.
I give it 4 out of 5 stars.
I also saw the movie this weekend and it was really good too. It had a few differences from the book and some that was left out. Overall I would recommend the book over the movie, but if you don't have the time to read it, at least see the movie. I would suggest not watching the movie right after reading the book though. I was so caught up in comparing the differences from the book that I couldn't really enjoy the movie as much.