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A Novel
Written by: Brenda Brooks
Narrated by: Sharon Taylor
Length: 6 hrs

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Publisher's Summary

How far would you go for love?

When 24-year-old Nicole Hewett’s beloved childhood friend, Honey, returns to their small northern town after an unexplained six-year absence, Nicole realizes how her life had stalled without her. But the prodigal returns with troubling secrets, and before long, Nicole is drawn into a high-stakes game.

Honey is a thrilling, sensuous modern noir novel with a classic refrain: Nothing is more dangerous than love.

©2019 Brenda Brooks (P)2019 ECW Press

What the critics say

"Brooks has delivered a meaty, insightful, and at times funny story of star crossed lovers (think Rebel Without a Cause). Her writing is exceptional and hard-driving, and the story itself difficult to put down." (Booklist)

"Sinuous and captivating, Honey is a novel about friendship, obsession, and the troubling, even perilous ambiguities behind motivations and desires." (Foreword Reviews)

"Honey shows that the classic noir fatalism you see in writers like David Goodis makes a lot of sense in a contemporary setting as well. With well-drawn characters and Brooks's ability to tease out an obsessiveness that leads to some truly bad decision-making, this is an impactful, spare read." (Nathan Ripley, author of Find You in the Dark and Your Life Is Mine)

"If Raymond Chandler has taught us anything, it’s that every good noir begins with a dame, preferably one who’s beautiful, lost, and a whole lot of trouble. With her shadowy past and undeniable charm, Honey more than fits the bill - she’s heaven and hell all at once. Nicole hasn’t seen her childhood best friend since she left town years before. But now that Honey is back, they can pick up where they left off and then some. It isn’t long though before the growing heat between them threatens to consume Nicole entirely - who is Honey really? And why did she come back? Brenda Brooks has written an engrossing and gritty slow burn of a mystery, one that marks a welcome update to the genre!" (Lauren Peugh, Elliott Bay Book Company)

"A very, very good book! I fell in love with the writing (or should I say with Nicole’s voice?) by the end of the prologue, and was still in love when I reached the end. I never stopped rooting for Nicole.... What sets this thriller apart from the crowd, I think, are two wonderful elements: 1) the ambiguity of Honey’s innocence or guilt throughout the story - was she a manipulator? a victim? and 2) the strong thrum of deep love that runs like a current under the tale - the fact that Nicole was in love with Honey no matter what she’d done or hadn’t done, and that her love seemed to supersede all other considerations. It’s not often you read of this sort of relationship in a mystery/thriller, and Ms. Brooks so skillfully walks that knife-edge between love and manipulation, between ignorance and denial. I think many of our mystery readers would really enjoy this book, and seems to me to be a great book club choice - so much to ponder and discuss!" (Tim Budd, Prairie Lights Books)

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  • John
  • 2020-06-04

Not worth it

What a sad terrible story. The author wrote like she was trying to write the next great American novel with a convoluted love story and way too many metaphors. The narrator was good but the story was not. The ending was both unclear and sad. There were no winners here, just a sad odd love story with no certainty to the end.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Emily DeVos
  • 2019-10-30


had a real hard time with this one. I was pretty excited about the premise, but the main character is not a smart person. and that's being generous. I was disappointed with her every step of the way, and maybe I was supposed to be.