The Secret Life Of Bees Character Analysis

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From the time any living creature emerges into this world, their life becomes dedicated to growing and developing. Humans are especially suited to survive and endure the harsh attributes of life. Through each challenge that a person conquers, they become increasingly wiser. As life progresses, more and more challenges are brought on. As a result, as one grows older, they realize that they are capable of more than they’d ever thought. Set during the sixties in the fictional town of Sylvan, South Carolina, The Secret Life of Bees focuses on fourteen year old Lily Owens’ quest for a new and improved life. Stuck in the fictional town of Sylvan with her abusive and manipulative father, T. Ray, the faint memory of the day in which she accidentally …show more content…
August’s revelation of the disappointing truth makes Lily’s heart hurt more than it ever has, but in the end, Lily learns a beneficial lesson through the pain; “There is nothing perfect, there is only life (256).” Once August tells Lily this, it is easier for her to come to terms with her life. It brings her out of her fantasy world that her seemingly flawless mother was once a part of, and snaps her back into reality. With this new outlook on life, Lily is able to recognize that everybody makes mistakes, and helps her understand that it’s important to not expect too much out of the world. Instead, she learns that humans must accept life as it is, greatly shaping her outlook on life. From that point on, Lily accepts the faults in her mother, her father, and herself with less hesitation. Just as August taught her to be more accepting of life, Zachary Lincoln Taylor taught Lily to be more open to defying stereotypes. In The Secret Life of Bees, Zach is Lily’s best friend and her romantic interest. Although he has had the privilege of growing up with love from the Boatwright sisters that Lily is only starting to receive, he’s still not able to lead a completely happy life due to the …show more content…
A person that is unable to forgive is one that will remain eternally unhappy because they are always focused on the negative aspects of life. In The Secret Life of Bees, Lily is ends up forgiving her mother, herself, and her father by the end of the novel. Since Lily has spent the entirety of her life romanticizing her mother, when she finds out her own mother abandoned her, Lily doesn’t take it lightly. Lily cannot grasp the idea that her mother had a nervous breakdown and needed to take care of herself. Instead, she only hears that her mother left her for her own selfish reasons. However, once she learns that her mother went back to get her from Sylvan, she comes closer to forgiveness; “Drifting off to sleep, I thought about her. How nobody is perfect. How you just have to close your eyes and breathe out and let the puzzle of human heart be what it is (285).” She realizes that people are responsible for their own actions, and sometimes these actions may not accurately represent the person as a whole. Lily now understands that though her mother left her, this didn’t mean that she loved her any less. After coming to terms with her mother’s actions, Lily is able to start forgiving herself. She begins to accept that life is uncontrollable, and the only way to move on is to forgive one’s self; “In the photograph by my bed my mother

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