Amy Tector took part in my Author Spotlight recently – you can read that here – and I’m so pleased to be sharing my review of her book The Honeybee Emeralds today. The book is published by Keylight Books and out now for ereaders with the paperback to follow next week. My thanks to the publishers for kindly sending me an ecopy for review.
About the book
When Alice Ahmadi discovers a famed emerald necklace while interning at a struggling Parisian magazine, she is plunged into a glittering world of diamonds and emeralds, courtesans and spies, and the long-buried secrets surrounding the necklace and its glamorous former owners.
When she realizes the mysterious Honeybee Emeralds could be her chance to save the magazine, she recruits her friends Lily and Daphne to form the “Fellowship of the Necklace.” Together, they set out to uncover the romantic history of the gems. Through diaries, letters, and investigations through the winding streets and iconic historic landmarks of Paris, the trio begins to unravel more than just the secrets of the necklace’s obsolete past.
Along the way, Lily and Daphne’s relationships are challenged, tempered, and changed. Lily faces her long-standing attraction to a friend, who has achieved the writing success that eluded her. Daphne confronts her failing relationship with her husband, while also facing simmering problems in her friendship with Lily. And, at last, Alice finds her place in the world – although one mystery still remains: how did the Honeybee Emeralds go from the neck of American singer Josephine Baker during the Roaring Twenties to the basement of a Parisian magazine?
Imagine finding a long forgotten room full of beautiful costumes and then finding an incredible diamond and emerald necklace in the pocket of one of the jackets. That is what happens to Alice, a young intern at at Bonjour Paris, a magazine for ex-pats. Well of course, you’d be curious to find out more as was Alice and so she sets out to find out the history of this amazing necklace with the help of her friends.
There are quite a lot of characters in the book, all bringing their own strengths, weaknesses and insecurities to the story. To mention a few, there is Alexander, a perfumier from Iceland, Daphne struggling a bit with her marriage, Jacob, an American writer and Elise who has quite a few secrets of her own. I enjoyed getting to know them all. I also enjoyed the chapters set in the past where we hear from some of the rather famous previous owners of the necklace and how it passed from one owner to another.
I had expected The Honeybee Emeralds to have more of a historical slant than it did but found instead that it was more of an contemporary adventure story. I started off thinking it was a bit like Enid Blyton for grown-ups with Alice and her friends uncovering clues to find out more about the necklace. Towards the end though it put me in mind of an Agatha Christie with a mystery to solve rather than a murder, and suspicion falling on the actions of many of the characters.
With intrigue, glamour, friendship and danger, The Honeybee Emeralds is a really fun and enjoyable read!
About the Author
Amy Tector was born and raised in the rolling hills of Quebec’s Eastern Townships. She has worked in archives for the past twenty years and has found some pretty amazing things, including lost letters, mysterious notes and once, a whale’s ear. Amy spent many years as an expat, living in Brussels and in The Hague, where she worked for the International Criminal Tribunal for War Crimes in Yugoslavia. She lives in Ottawa, Canada with her daughter, dog and husband.