Jodi Picoult & Jennifer Finney Boylan: Mad Honey

This review is written with thanks to Pigeonhole for the opportunity to read and review Mad Honey.


Olivia fled her abusive marriage to return to her hometown and take over the family beekeeping business when her son Asher was six. Now, impossibly, her baby is six feet tall and in his last year of high school, a kind, good-looking, popular ice hockey star with a tiny sprite of a new girlfriend.

Lily also knows what it feels like to start over – when she and her mother relocated to New Hampshire it was all about a fresh start. She and Asher couldn’t help falling for each other, and Lily feels happy for the first time. But can she trust him completely?

Then Olivia gets a phone call – Lily is dead, and Asher is arrested on a charge of murder. As the case against him unfolds, she realises he has hidden more than he’s shared with her. And Olivia knows firsthand that the secrets we keep reflect the past we want to leave behind ­­- and that we rarely know the people we love well as we think we do.


I have been looking forward to reading Mad Honey since it was first announced and it absolutely did not disappoint! I was interested in how the dynamic between the two authors would work and their writing styles complement each other really well. I was completely captivated by the story and the way the authors convey the intense emotions throughout the novel is wonderful. 

The court case that is central to Mad Honey provides a lot of tension. I became really engaged in this part of the plot and I really wanted to know what would happen to Asher. This was balanced really well with the more emotional aspects of the novel. The chapters alternated between the perspectives of Olivia and Lily and this really helped me to see the dynamic between the characters and develop my own theories as to what had happened. 

I enjoyed reading about the practice of beekeeping and learning more about how honey is made. This part of the novel is really well researched and there are some clever parallels made between the bees and the humans. 

The authors explore a number of sensitive themes in Mad Honey and they do so extremely well. The issues are clearly well researched and the authors obviously want to give the subjects the respect they deserve. I definitely came away from this emotional read with a lot to think about.

Mad Honey is available from Amazon.

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