The Honey Farm on the Hill by Jo Thomas
Publishing Date: 24th August 2017
Source: Received from the publisher in return for an honest review!
Number of pages: 400
Genre: General Fiction (Adult), Women’s Fiction
We never forget the one who got away.
Eighteen years ago Nell fell in love in the mountains of Crete and life changed for ever. Nell’s daughter, Demi, has never met her dad. Nell never saw him again.
When she gets the chance to return to the hilltop town of Vounoplagia – where everything began – Nell can’t resist the urge to go back and find him.
Working on a honey farm perched high up in the hills, there’s plenty to keep her busy. And she will quickly realise the town harbours just as many secrets as she does.
But if Nell’s favourite romantic films are right, there’s a happy ending in store for each of us. All she has to do is seek out the magic of the mountains…
Ah, I’m a real winner this year when it comes to great books set in Greece! Jo Thomas’s “The Honey Farm on the Hill” is another novel this summer that happens on a beautiful, sunny Corfu, and even though it’s not as full of Greek traditions for example, it is still full to brims with the gorgeous Greek spirit, myths, delicious food and beautiful descriptions – Jo Thomas has really written a beautiful, atmospheric novel, not forgetting to add some mystery, budding romance and bees. Yes, bees. And honey.
It was incredibly easy to read. I have felt a part of this story right from the beginning and I didn’t want to put it away. I loved how easily Nell slotted into life with Maria, Kostas and Mitera, how quickly she settled in, and even though her being there has also had a hidden agenda, she truly put her heart into work on the farm. Together with her I’ve learnt about various herbs, their significance and characteristics and it was a great lesson. We already know about the importance of bees but the way Jo Thomas has written about it was again an eye – opener. However, I know bees are not angry but do they know it as well? Whatever, it is a great message to be taken from this story.
I only had some small problems with the drama that sometimes felt a little too exaggerated, too dramatic. Don’t get me wrong, pretty please, it was still a great read however there were moments that made me shake my head in disbelief. The story was also very repetitive at times, so I won’t forget for a long time that Nell missed her daughter so much (I know. I understand. I am a mother and miss my daughter when she’s away but there is so much I can take. I knew Nell is missing Demi, I didn’t have to be reminded every second page. Or that Nell’s boyfriend has cheated. Or that the dittany is a VERY rare herb.) But other than that I loved and enjoyed this story, truly.
The writing is so vivid, guys, SO vivid! It’s colourful and evocative and so rich, and I could almost smell all the herbs in the air. The descriptions of the food made my mouth water, and I could easily recognise the danger when it was around. The dialogues were one of the best, the author has so well captured what the characters wanted to tell and perfectly put it into words. The story was also full of surprises. What also singles this book out is the fact that it is not only your usual rom – com, it is full of much more deeper issues, it is thoughtful and introduces us to some dilemmas. So altogether, it is Jo Thomas at her best, and “The Honey Farm on the Hill” is a great read, so richly imagined and so wonderfully written – highly recommended!