Review of the Third of Three Book’s I have Purchased

The intention is to give my perspective on three books I have purchased
I am not a book critic (English always dragged me down though school and university) but a retired engineer and new to bee keeping, so I cannot comment on the factual accuracy of information.
The books will be reviewed in the order I received them.

  1. The ABC and XYZ of Bee Culture by A. I. Root 39th edition 1983
  2. The Australian Beekeeping Manual by Robert Owen 1st Edition 2015
  3. The Practical Beekeeper Vols 1, 2 and 3 by Michael Bush 2011 edition

I do not necessarily agree with everything in these books but they, together with information from forums and web sites form the basis of how I intend to manage my bees.
Michael Bush in his book says in effect, grab every book you can lay your hands on,read it and take what you think is right for you (apologies Michael if I am miss quoting). I agree with this. I have always had the philosophy that if you get just one bit of information you can take and use from a book, that book has paid for itself.

  1. The Practical Beekeeper - Beekeeping Naturally by Michael Bush
    I am not sure how to sum up this book. Vol 1 concentrates on the bees, their cycles, problems and products. There is also lists on myths and fallacies. For reference there is also a good alphabetical Appendix. Vol 2 concentrates on beekeeping and the ways to improve your hive/hives. Vol 3 is more about Queens,expanding and hives other than the Lang. This is a large book and has a lot to get through. My summary doesn’t do it justice.

Pertinent to Neebees.
With apologies to Bushy I think this is not the book to get you started. While it covers starting up beekeeping the information overloads you with detail. This is a book to come back to once you have got under way. I keep it handy and refer to it from time to time.

The style is certainly different to most books I have read. It is a mixture of a homely chat, a lot of do’s, don’ts and lists. Plus a lot of very practical solutions.

Volume 1 doesn’t have many illustrations and the few photos are black and white. While black and white photos and drawings are better than none, colour makes explanations a lots clearer. Especially for new starters. Vol 2 and 3 have a lot more photos, with seemingly better definition, but again in this day and age colour is the way to go. Perhaps in the next revision, as some of the photos seemed meaningless without colour.

Would I buy this book in Hindsight
Yes I would.
This is more a reference book for me. Takes a bit of getting used to and at times doesn’t seem logically put together (perhaps that’s the engineer in me) but the detail is there , lots of it.


Yes I totally agree. Michael has some absolute gems there and plenty useful for beginners, explanations of what bees do etc. But you really need to hold back on all this treatment free stuff. He has spent a long time and some losses to get to where he is. It’s not done in a season.


Ps thank you for the review