Bees in the Butterfly Garden is book 1 in A Guilded Legacy Novel series written by Maureen Lang.
John Davenport took his daughter Meg to an exclusive boarding school when she was very young. She stayed at the school all the time and didn't see her father. Unknown to her, he attending some o f her school functions.
Meg was lead to believe that her father was a wealthy businessman, but instead he was one of the most talented thieves. It is only when Meg goes home for her father's funeral does she find out what her father really was. John did not want Meg to find out what type of man he was. But John's girlfriend felt Meg had a right to know. John has been mentoring Ian Maquire sine he was a teenager and has trusted Ian to care for Meg.
Meg has decided she is going to follow in her father's foot steps. She contacts a former friend, Claire Pemberton, from the school and plans to go visit for the summer and remake their garden. Under this pretense, Meg finds out where their family keeps their gold and makes a plan with Ian to steel it.
This is historical Christian romance story with a little bit of mystery mixed in. The part I especially liked in the story is how the Jesus on the cross picture covering the trap door lever attracts everyone's attention. Despite having Christian upbringing Meg and Ian have turned away from it and now plan a life of crime. I also like the way the Pemberton family holds prayer time every morning that included their servants. As well as how the Pemberton children take advantage of their parents being gone for the summer and give temporary raises to the servants and give them a party in the park.
This is a good story to get lost in. It's a good story to show that even bad criminals can turn their back on crimes and seek God instead.
What I found interesting about this story was the idea that Meg is so determined to follow the footsteps of her father knowing that it would ostracize her from society. Ian, a thief himself, wants to honor her fathers wishes by keeping her on the right path. How would two people so determined to follow the wrong path manage to end up on the right one? 3 1/2 stars (Full review at my website)
This was a very interesting book. I loved the plot of the this young girl finding her own path while struggling with the father she thought she had and her father's real way of life. The book is very well written bringing the characters to life. There were sections of the book that I felt was a little slow in developing, but in the end I really enjoyed the storyline.
I give this book 4 out of 5 stars!
* I received this book free in exchange for a honest review.
Meg Davenport has everything she needs in the way of material possessions, but the one thing she wants she will never have. Raised in an exclusive school for young ladies, she has no family except for a father she never sees. Having given up her girlhood fantasies of running away long ago, she has resigned herself to a future of disappointments, disillusionment, and the death of every dream she's ever had.
But when her father dies, she wants to break every rule she's ever been made to follow. Determined to fully explore her new freedom exactly as she pleases, she discovers things about her father that fail to make up for the lack of his presence in her life. Discovering that John Davenport was one of the Gilded Age's most talented thieves does not dissuade her from hatching a master plan with Ian Maguire, the boy her father raised into a man very much like himself. Will they be able to pull off the biggest heist of Ian's career, or are they both reaching too high, too far, and too fast? Will they loose everything for the sake of trying to prove their worth to the people around them?
I had no idea what to expect in this book. I knew there was going to be thieves involved, and that alone piqued my interest. Lang is a new author for me, and I was pleasantly surprised to find this lovely novel was full of adventure, excitement, and even a little bit of romance. Meg never comes across as a stuck up or snotty; but a girl waiting to emerge from her life of privilege and truly grow up. Granted, she has quite a few misadventures along the way, but Lang weaves a tale that brings enough thrills to keep you riveted to it's pages till the very end.
I found the first half of this book dragged a bit but I couldn't put it down for the second half. It always amuses me to see how 'proper' society lived in those days. The book included some very interesting characters and I especially loved the way the Pemberton family dealt with each other when someone went against the rules - deciding to extend grace or mercy - or to punish in some way. This book portrayed the good and bad sides of life and the importance of making wise choices. There was a mixture of adventure, romance and suspense and a clear understanding of God's grace, mercy and love.