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Paperback Beka Lamb Book

ISBN: 0435988441

ISBN13: 9780435988449

Beka Lamb

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Format: Paperback

Condition: Good*

*Best Available: (missing dust jacket)

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Book Overview

Set in Belize, Central America, this book is the record of a few months in the life of Beka and her family. The story is built around Beka's victory over her habit of lying and her relationship with her friend Toycie. The politics of the colony and the presence of the Catholic Church are featured.

Customer Reviews

5 ratings

Beka is an underdog

Beka Lamb is a young Creole girl growing up in Belize. Her family, living in post WWII Belize and struggling with the nature of British rule vs. the danger of a Guatemalan take-over, wants the best for her but fears the worst. Young Beka has a major personality flaw - she lies constantly. Her parents have made sacrifices to send her to school, but they are at a crossroads when she fails her term. They give her an ultimatum that she's not prepared to deal with, even as she is struggling with other personal issues, which are revealed through flashbacks. Belizean politics, culture, familial ties, and class-struggle are all explored in this story about a girl searching for a better future. Beka is an underdog, even to those who love her most. It's a setup that helps the reader find common ground with an underestimated young girl, who at first glance seems rather immature and lacking in motivation. As Beka's past is revealed the author sheds light on just why her struggle is so important, and what demons she must overcome. Though Beka's parents and grandmother often come across quite gruff with each other and her, it's through their eyes that we can see Beka and her ambition best. The book also grants the reader insight into Belize in its colonial times and dives into its culture and conflicts. The story is rather simple at heart, but it has heart and so the reader is carried away on a wave of hope that Beka can find her way around her obstacles and decide on a future that is right for her.

timeless debut novel

This debut novel is a must read for any citizen of The Americas. It's been one of the novels that has lingered with me for years, and the element of Beka's holding a wake for something greater than any living human being seems to me timeless.

Poignant yet delightful

I first read Beka Lamb more than 10 years ago and read it again last month as the first selection of The Belize-Carib Book Club of Los Angeles. This is a delightful book that captured growing up in Belize as a young girl in the fifties. I have shared it with friends and relatives and I highly recommend it. I have read all of Zee Edgell's other books and short stories and found each of them captivating. There is no doubt that Zee Edgell is indeed very talented. I look forward to her future publications.

One of the best!

This is a lovely, lyrical coming-of-age story that I think that most people who like to read would enjoy. It meant a lot to me especially because I was born in Belize, but came to the United States at a very young, and don't really remember this place that my parents and other relatives constantly talked about. BEKA LAMB described that Belize of former days and while not varnishing over the hardship, the poverty and the poor choices that women had there also showed the beauty of life in a close-knit community with its own history and rituals (many of which I know are now lost). I have been reading sections to my mother, a native Belize creole; she recognizes everything from the Sunday walks to the funeral customs and is very delighted with the book. But I don't think the book would only appeal to people from a Belizean background. It is also one of the best-done coming-of-age books I have ever read, which really delves into the minds and souls of two young girls (Beka and her friend Toycie) who are at a crossroads and will make choices that take them in very different directions.

captivaing and compelling

The first time I read this book, it was a mandatory reading assignment in Catholic school in the Caribbean. I left that country and my copy of the book behind and have searched incessantly for it ever since. The story of "Beka Lamb" is a realistic portrayal of Caribbean life for a young girl. The political climate in the novel is still very much in existence today. The plight of the character Toycie is universal.A poor, uneducated, neglected girl, who falls for the first male who gives her an iota of attention.The overbearing matriachs and the struggle for Beka to assert herself as a woman is realistic. Zee Edgell's use of symbolism in the novel is superb.
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