Author: Honey Brown
Jane Curry Publishing RRP $27.95
Review: Monique Mulligan
If you’re a fan of Honey Brown’s contemporary suspense thrillers, take note – her latest novel, Six Degrees, is suspense of a different kind, a “will-they-won’t-they-how-will-they” kind. However, while Six Degrees represents a departure from Brown’s earlier work, the storytelling is equally good.
In reality, Six Degrees is made up of several different stories, connected by six degrees of separation. These are stories about sex – they are passionate, even erotic – but don’t expect a 50 Shades of Grey-style book filled with unattainable characters and unbelievable situations. These are real people – people working in bars, cafes, fathers, mothers, widows, young and old – exploring their sexuality and sexual attraction in everyday situations. The stories are bold and authentic, surprising and even tender.
Each story can be seen as a vignette into one person’s experience of sexual attraction, but in as much as they stand alone, they also connect via small details, be they relationships or situations. Brown cleverly brings the story as a whole full circle, with the final story linking back to the first in a subtle, almost blink-and-you’ll-miss-it way. Of course, what also binds all the stories is the characters’ shared desire for connection with another person, which is something most of us is able to empathise with.
The rural settings (there are several) has led to the book being labelled a rural romance, but since the novel is less about romance and more about sexual attraction, I’m less inclined to categorise it that way. Nor does it need to be – it stands as a strong piece of contemporary fiction without labels.
I read this book in one sitting, completely drawn in by Brown’s honest storytelling, interesting and believable characters, and her insight into what is one of the fundamental aspects of the human experience.
Six Degrees is available from good bookstores. My copy was courtesy of Jane Curry Publishing.