Get swept inside a dark and heart-wrenching world on this journey with Nuri and Afra.
Before the war broke out in Aleppo, Syria, Nuri ran a successful Beekeeping business with his cousin Mustafa. As the war broke out, their homes, families, and businesses were destroyed, and fleeing their beloved country was the only chance they had at survival.
After a tragic incident, Afra becomes blind and she can no longer see the horrors of the world around her, and Nuri has to protect her at all costs.
But when the pain of loss and tragedy drags Nuri to the darkest places in his mind, they must fight to stay together and find love again.
A heartbreaking tale of lovers desperately trying their war-stricken home. The grief and darkness flow through every page that when the light comes, all you can do is cry.
The incredible thing about this book is that you travel with Nuri and Afra. You feel Nuri’s numbness to the world around him, and you feel Afra’s love and pain. The numbness and depression were so heavy that I could feel my heart sink whenever he refused to give Afra the affection she desperately needed and deserved. I could feel my heart sink when it became clear his son was the only thing keeping him alive, even though he was gone.
But then, there was hope. The hope flowed in waves and swept you up into a lightness that Nuri and Afra had been denied for so long. Travelling with them through refugee camps across the globe was as deeply disturbing at times as it was promising. You get to see the very worst, and very best of humanity. They faced many, many challenges that were all so carefully and thoughtfully written by Lefteri. Afra’s blindness was a prominent feature of the book, but Nuri didn’t wish for her to see. He didn’t wish for her to feel the pain that he felt. My heart broke for these characters.
Nuri and Mustafa’s love for the bees was the one that kept them hoping for a better life when they felt they had nothing left. Mustafa was kind and as courageous and brave as Nuri and Afra for making such a treacherous journey. Being reunited with his cousin became the only thing that kept Nuri going.
The ending was so beautiful and uplifting which is precisely what this book needed. I won’t go into details as I don’t want to spoil it. A part of me wants to read more about these characters, but I also feel their stories have been written. It would be interesting to see a sequel about where they ended up, but sometimes it only takes one book. This time that may very well be the case.
I can’t recommend this book highly enough. It’s moving, powerful, and filled with tragedy and glimmers of hope. It truly is a battle for survival. Christy Leftri has a gift for story-telling and that is proven with The Beekeeper of Aleppo.
I could only give this book 5/5 stars. It is so beautifully written and transports you into a different world. By the time you’ve finished the book, you feel humbled and grateful to be able to live the life you do.