Polish / Poland
Socha, Piotr (illus.)
Warszawa: Wydawnictwo Dwie Siostry, 2015. –  p.
Bee | Honey | Non-fiction | Picture book
White Ravens issue: 2016
Reading age: 5+
A big book with a lot of space! And cartoonist Piotr Socha (b.1966) fills that space in the best way imaginable. This non-fiction picture book buzzes with many useful, intriguing, and curious facts about bees and honey. The meaning of the bee dance is explained just as cleverly and wittily as the biometric comb structure of the bee hive; we learn, for instance, how surfers copied the design for their surfboards. The sections on the “cultural history” of bees offer special comedy: knob-nosed stone-age people find out how tasty honey is, Napoleon makes the bee into his crest animal, and cross-eyed Roman lady aristocrats bathe in milk and honey. The illustrations take up the most room in this large-format book and draw readers in to the entertaining text on the lower part of the pages. No wonder “Pszczoły” won many prizes in Poland – it’s been a long while since such a beautiful book about bees was made.