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Poisoned Honey by Beatrice Gormley 5 of 5 stars.
Mariamne is a vulnerable girl living in a time when women were put down and looked upon as barely better than children or slaves. Mariamne watches her life fall to pieces as one event after the other pushes her closer to a precipice where the fall is long and dark. As a child Mariamne saw visions, going so far as to believe she could fly only to find herself tumbling down a flight of stairs. She sees visions still, but as more and more people try to convince her that she has an overactive imagination and should push such thoughts aside she turns to a different way of escape. With the help of an Egyptian wise-woman Mariamne learns a way into a secret garden, one that exists outside of the seen-world. But Mariamne makes a tragic mistake by trusting the place and the creatures that dwell in it, going so far as to bring the demons through with her. Mariamne teeters on the edge of that frightening precipice as she comes to realize that she is possessed by these demons and knows not how to free herself of them.
Poisoned Honey is the tale of a woman many of us know as Mary Magdalene. Very little is known about her, though much is speculated, and Beatrice Gormley is here to tell us, in her wonderfully straight-forward prose what she imagines Mary Magdalene's life to have been like.
When I first read the summary for this book I was quite intrigued. Many YA authors have tried to unravel the young lives of famous women in Greek and Egyptian mythologies, but I haven't seen many try and tackle the life of a Christian character. Because of this, I thought Gormley's book might be a bit controversial and wanted to get a look at it myself. The beginning is a bit slow as it sets up the time period, but is well written and interesting nonetheless. As the story unfolds we begin to recognize many of the well known Christian characters (despite the fact that many of the names are variations away from what most of us have heard) in a way that is far different, but still characteristic and respectable. The portrayal of Jesus, Mary, and Matthew are all wonderful. This truly isn't what I expected at all. It’s touching and deep and doesn't delve to far away from the core beliefs of Christians to be considered blasphemous. At the same time, it’s told so differently that I believe anyone of any faith would enjoy it without being offended.
I honestly can't tell you how glad I am that I read this book, and I would recommend it to anyone!
A special thanks to BookDivas for sending me a copy to review!
For fans of: Beatrice Gormley, Nobody's Princess, Nobody's Prize, Michelle Moran
Review by Arya @ A Sea of Pages (http://seaofpages.blogspot.com)