Read The Chardonnay Charade by Ellen Crosby Online


Following the success of The Merlot Murders, Crosby returns with another tale of suspense set amidst the vines of the Virginia wine country....

Title : The Chardonnay Charade
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780743289924
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 272 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

The Chardonnay Charade Reviews

  • James
    2019-04-27 05:25

    3 out of 5 stars to Ellen Crosby's The Chardonnay Charade, her second book in the "Wine Country Mysteries" series. I enjoy wine and I enjoy this series, but I found myself putting the book down a few times without any sense of urgency to get back to it. In the end, I am glad I read it and I will continue a few more in the series, but there were a few times I wasn't very engaged due to the way the story has been told.StoryLucie Montgomery is still healing from the death of her father and a few other family friends in the last book when the wife of her doctor is found dead in Lucie's vineyard, possibly due to her staff's negligent activities. Lucie soon learns the victim was bashed on the head prior to having some of the chemicals on her property attack the victim's body, but the suspects all point to friends of hers which makes it even harder to accept. Lucie supports her doctor who is accused of the murders and helps him prove his alibi, but when another death adds the intrigue of political scandal, Lucie's confused. Her vineyard becomes a spot for lovers' trysts upping the game of who is actually having an affair on his/her spouse. Add in a charming British transplant, some sisterly bonding time with Mia and the potential for Quinn, her new winemaker, to abandon her (or kiss her!), and you've got tons of stories beginning to burgeon. In the end, the killer is caught but it's not something Lucie is happy to hear given all that she's been through lately.StrengthsIf you love wine, you will feel right at home. The author adds in many different background stories about the grapes, processes and EPA oversight regulations. It helps you feel connected with a bit of the past when Thomas Jefferson built wineries from European grapes, something important to these Virginia vintners.Lucy is a great character who you sometimes dislike and sometimes root for. I like the balanced approach because she seems very real. She is well-written with flaws and strengths, but each time, I find myself wanting to keep learning more.SuggestionsI really don't like Lucie's family, but I'm hoping her relationship with them will change in the next book given what happened to Mia at the end of this one (no spoilers here!). It feels like Lucie is too alone and I want her to have someone on her side for a change.The plot was a bit predictable. I had 3 potential outcomes (and there were quite a number of suspects) and this was at the top of my list. I didn't want it to come true, but it did... I think it bothers me because I took it as another blow to Lucie that the killer is someone she knows (not really a spoiler as she knows almost all of the suspects). I was hoping it would go differently.Final ThoughtsI waffled between a 3 and a 4 on this review, having a few good highlights but also a few "blah" parts... in the end, I think it gets pushed down to a 3 because it took me a week to read and I'm usually done in 3 days with a book of this size. It rolls along without any major cliffhangers or major dramatic moments which can be good but sometimes you need a few surprise nudges. If you've read the first one and are on the fence about the second one... if you need suspense and action, this isn't for you; however, if you enjoy the relaxing story-telling type approach, then you should keep reading this series.About MeFor those new to me or my reviews... here's the scoop: I read A LOT. I write A LOT. And now I blog A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at, where you'll also find TV & Film reviews, the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge and lots of blogging about places I've visited all over the world. And you can find all my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Vote in the poll and ratings. Thanks for stopping by. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators.

  • Laura W
    2019-05-04 08:29

    As Chardonnay Charade begins it is about nine months after the events of the previous novel. Lucie and her winemaker Quinn have managed, despite their differences, to keep the vineyard going. Unfortunately the Virginia spring has turned unseasonably cold forcing them to drastic measures to keep the vines from freezing. Even more unfortunately after two sleepless nights of battling the weather a guest from a reception held at the vineyard is found dead among vines that had just been sprayed with a particularly toxic pesticide. Now not only did Lucie have to deal with inclement weather but also with the very real threat that the EPA would close the vineyard. This is an interesting new series. The cast of recurring characters is large and well written and the location is described in such detail that the vineyard and surrounding areas become almost another character. This series has enough twists and turns to keep the reader guessing until the end. The overall story arcs are particularly strong in this series so that it would be better for the reader to begin at the beginning. The elements all come together so well. I really love this series and how it combines my love of wine and history.

  • Kristen
    2019-05-16 06:29

    Good read...great historical backing of old Virginia families as well as info on Virginia vitaculture of wine. And we all know I lovvvvvvvvveeeeeeeeeeee wine.

  • Char Dauterman
    2019-05-21 10:39

    Lucie Montgomery owns a winery in Atoka, Virginia. When a frost threatens to kill acres of grapes in the vineyard, Lucie hires someone to fly a helicopter to blow warm air over the vines in order to keep the grapes from freezing. As she’s leaving after a long night of damage control she stumbles across the body of Georgia Greenwood, a local politician, lying near the fields. Suddenly the frost is the last thing Lucie needs to worry about.I picked this book up at a library book sale and even though I’m not a wine person, I thought it sounded interesting. It’s second in the series and although you don’t get a full backstory, I was still able to read it as a standalone.When I first dived into it, I found all the information about the history of Virginia and the process of winemaking to be very intriguing. As I neared the middle of the story however, I quickly became disillusioned. There was so much history and information on wine that I almost forgot it was a mystery and I found myself getting bored. I put the book down several times and I really wondered if I was ever going to finish it. I’m not sure I’m glad that I did. The ending was a major disappointment as the killer couldn’t have been more obvious. I really didn’t care for any of the characters either, but what bothered me most was the relationship between Lucie and Quinn….or what was supposed to be one I guess. Several of Lucie’s friends kept giving the wink-wink over her and Quinn but I never really understood why. Nothing about them screamed potential couple. If there was supposed to be any sexual tension between them then I missed it. I wasn’t sure why they were even business partners honestly. Quinn was unlikable and treated Lucie as if she were stupid. He wasn’t shy about making it known that she should just sit back and let him run things even though it’s her vineyard! The worse part was that Lucie never really told him he was wrong. Of course I shouldn’t be surprised considering the relationship she has with her sister, Mia. Honestly I think the only way to get any enjoyment out of this story is if you are a huge wine lover and history buff. Sadly I am neither.A copy of this review can be found on my blog at Once Upon A Book

  • Nancy
    2019-04-27 08:38

    In my opinion, this second in the Wine Country Mystery series by Ellen Crosby is much better than the first. There doesn't seem to be as much of a rush to the end and the characters are better drawn with a more relaxed feel to the whole book.Lucie Montgomery is the heiress of the Montgomery Estate Vineyard in Middleburg, Virginia, but being an heiress isn't all that it's cracked up to be, especially when she has to keep her family in order, that includes a younger sister who is battling he own demons, keeping a vineyard profitable, employees that seem to have their own agenda, and oh yeah, a dead body to deal with.Virginia Greenwood, the wife of the local doctor, and quite a personality herself, is found murdered and though there aren’t many suspects the murder is too easily pinned on the one person who can't defend himself, the man that she has been having secret rendezvous with. When he disappears that only leaves one person; the one person that Lucie entrusted her life too.Like a good vintage, this series gets better with age. Sorry, I couldn’t avoid throwing in a cliché.

  • Cathy
    2019-04-30 07:36

    I enjoy this second book in the series, but, the main character, Lucie, is becoming one of those characters that for some reason can not actually do the things she seems to want to do. This "I couldn't make my mouth move" personality trait Crosby is using is irritating. I am, however, enjoying getting to know the primary characters a bit better, and hope none of them are not knocked off in the next book.

  • Emily Higgins
    2019-05-01 06:51

    Vineyard owner, Lucie Montgomery, and her crew spend a night trying to keep frost off their vines and their tender grapes. In the early morning, a body of a woman is found on the service road. The woman had been burned by a toxic chemical used on a new part of the vineyard the previous day. This brings the EPA down on the vineyard to say nothing of the police investigating the murder.

  • Dana
    2019-05-07 10:33

    A nice solid mystery. Lucie is coming into her own as a winery owner. Her relationship with Quinn is still edgy due to their personality differences as well as their underlying attraction. The mystery kept me guessing until the end. The pacing was just about right. Can't wait to read book 3.

  • Lisa Neustedter
    2019-04-26 07:47

    I really enjoyed this book. Great character development and constantly something happening! Always new suspects and problems in the vineyard to keep you interested. A good female lead character and best of all you get some added knowledge on area civil war events. I definitely recommend it!!

  • Susie G
    2019-05-06 10:47

    Not quite as enjoyable as "The Merlot Murders" but a good follow-up. I'll be reading the next book in the series!

  • Tami
    2019-04-23 07:37

    Have fallen in love with Ellen Crosby! Great read, fast, but entertaining!

  • Christa (haines) Sheridan
    2019-05-07 06:51

    Better than the first one in the series, but an unsatisfying ending.

  • Johnny
    2019-05-10 07:28

    Having lived in a wine region myself, I was amused at the scene where the vineyard owner and protagonist, Lucy Montgomery, is questioned because she was drinking another wine than her own. Lucy responds that they don’t want to get a “cellar palate,” taste so focused on their own style that they can’t distinguish subtleties and even problems. I know that there was a winery where the winemaker and his family would only drink their own wine. It changed very little from year to year and, in spite of being some people’s favored label in this valley, it was my least favorite. I remember asking my favorite winemaker in that valley why this other wine always disappointed me even though it received occasional plaudits from reviewers. When he told me that they didn’t drink other people’s wines, I considered that equivalent to the game designers I knew who didn’t play anyone else’s games. The Chardonnay Charade is a tense adventure where this woman who has been putting her life together after The Merlot Murders has to deal with natural disaster (somewhat overstated, but you’ll understand when you read the book), employee error/carelessness, sibling irresponsibility (on more than one level), government bureaucracy, fiscal reverses, emotional confusion (of a romantic nature, of course) and, at least, one murder. I can’t describe what is truly unique about this mystery without giving away the big revelation, but let’s just say that while I was onto the perpetrator from the initial death, it was very clear that the protagonist was not. This plot was so tightly constructed that even Quinn and the mystery man with the British accent from Florida would have made plausible suspects.Interestingly enough, there is also a sub-plot in this novel. One of the characters discovers a historical artifact from the latter portion of the War of the Northern Aggression (or War to Preserve the Union if you so prefer). The artifact purports to tie the CSA president (Jefferson Davis for those of you who are unversed in the era) to the assassin of the USA president (some guy with a beard—I think I saw him at Disneyland). This artifact threatens to start its own…er…Civil War among the population of this town famous for the guerrilla fighters known as Mosby’s Raiders. The question of authenticity becomes one more mystery for Lucy’s fecund investigative mind to solve.All in all, I think I liked The Chardonnay Charade as much or more than The Merlot Murders. There was a bit too much coincidence for my taste in the final solution, but that happens in any novel in the genre. This one was just enough to reduce it one star.

  • Cornerofmadness
    2019-04-24 02:41

    This one is a library find that I really wanted to like as I like mysteries and I like wine and the whole production side of it. I hadn't read the first book but that didn't matter much in terms of understanding the characters. I didn't like this as nearly as much as would have liked to because Lucie (the point of view character) and her wine making partner, Quinn come across as rather stubborn and abrasive, neither of which is endearing to me. Also the romance didn't work for me (I found it more distracting than anything) and I didn't like the ending at all.Still, I liked enough of it that I'd probably go to the library to find another in the series. It opens with Lucie and Quinn battling a late frost that will destroy their grapes and blaming each other for the position they're in (and doing it so petulantly as they do almost every talk about the winery you want to slap them). Lucie wants to cleave a little too tightly to the ways of the past and Quinn wants to chuck the past in the bucket and move on. Also one of the things they did in the winery was to use a dangerous chemical which was left out against regs which is used to kill Georgia Greenwood who is a politician who would work to shut down local wineries (she was at the winery for some sort of party), giving Lucie motive to kill her. She's also the philandering wife of the doctor who saved Lucie's life (She was in a major car accident that left her with a disabled foot).Naturally Lucie wants to prove neither she, Quinn nor Ross, Georgia's husband murdered Georgia and sets out to find the killer. To make matters worse, Ross has found a letter about some Confederate general linking him to Lincoln's assassination which makes everyone including Lucie set against him. (Another way to make me dislike a character, her defense of people fighting hard to keep slavery alive. Yeah, that's me being a Northener I guess). Added to this is Ross's suave British friend who is setting up a winery right next to Lucie's, might be poaching Quinn from Lucie all the while romancing Lucie. And the topper is Lucie's teenaged sister who is hanging out with the bad kids developing a drinking problem.It was a bit blatantly obvious where this mystery was going to end which made it all the more annoying because there weren't really good reasons for this particular character to be acting so nuts by the end. That's what really bothered me. Like I said I might read another but it would definitely be a 'from the library' read and not something I'd run out to buy.

  • Cindy Huffman
    2019-04-25 07:54

    So after some real heavy books. in volume and in subject matter, I thought it would be nice to read something more 'light-hearted'. Instead of a Harlequin Romance, which were by far a favorite light read for me as a young girl (and I'm now 40!). So I thought a mystery series set in wine country would do the job.The one I actually had saved in my wake county library book list was titled The Merlot Murders but since that wasn't available, I picked this one. The titles were tickling my fancy so how could I go wrong?But I did and the book was hard to finish. Not because it was long but because I had no real interest but I can't NOT finish something I started. It's an ego thing.I couldn't wait to finish so that I could start on a book I _could_ enjoy. The writing was not great. There were a bunch of big words mixed in regular folk talk. It just didn't blend. Relationships that were supposed to be meaningful never came through because there was just not enough to mold characters to one another. And it is significant because, for instance, we are supposed to believe that the main character and her winemaker Quinn, are supposed to have sexual tension. Never did I sense or feel any of that in the writing. Then there's her sister, Mia, who is partying way too much. There is no big sister care of what her sister is doing other than a few random sentences about how bad she's partying...and then the last few chapters, her sister's drinking and partying becomes part of the overall plot.The mystery is pretty much solved by the reader in the beginning. It is WAY TOO OBVIOUS, so obvious that once the truth is revealed at the end, it's just an eye-rolling reaction...DUH. I knew that and I was hoping for a different surprise.But because most of the characters, except the main one, are barely written about in depth, it would have been disappointing for anyone else -- including the main culprit -- to be revealed as the guilty party.So I don't plan to continue down these series for my "light-reads"...the fun ones that take me away from the deep tomes I have been reading off and on for the past year. In fact, I dropped Merlot Murders from my booklist.

  • C.
    2019-05-09 09:29

    When this series opened in France, I was impressed with Ellen Crosby’s writing. Alas, Lucie’s brother made enjoyment impossible. Eli was as wretched as their sister was inexplicably awkward. In this book too, Mia resisted her. Lucie was gone only a year. Their back story wasn’t accounted for properly; that those three relied on each other following their Mom’s death. I should have enjoyed “The Chardonnay Charade” much more. Eli turned around without the motive of the former novel and is loving. Lucie runs their parent’s vineyard with vintner, Quinn. Before the murder of her doctor’s wife commanded focus, I was riveted to the quest to drive away overnight frost.No one relates to that better than a Manitoba gardener. As I read, we began covering our garden plants and flowers with quilts at night. Our winter has been so phenomenally warm, daytime highs are still above 0C and due to our efforts: we have flowers in November! The murder twisted and turned enough that chasing the criminal generated a breathless pace, even if I was certain who it must be after letter-writing was matched. I don’t think this person’s motive matched their personality. Putting Mia under suspicious for something else was unfortunately, a predictable stretch. However, it lifted her sullenness that had marred this story. Siblings overcoming loss should bolster one another.The largest irritant is duelling Ellen created between Lucie and Quinn, who should never throw tantrums at his employer. Worse; Ellen seems to wants these characters dating. I was thrilled that she was swept away by Mick. I hope a “love / hate” cliché is avoided. Mick is a million-fold more likeable. I honestly would prefer Quinn signing-off, or becoming low key. The next mystery looks more atmospheric. Ellen’s premise is creative enough to yield exciting stories.

  • Sandie
    2019-04-23 08:28

    Falling into a genre somewhere between "beach read" and "cozy", The Chardonnay Charade is a pleasant little tome that will keep you entertained. While it does not have the complexity of great vintage, it does have the sparkling effervescence of a mid-priced champagne. Lucie Montgomery, our vineyard owner who made her first appearance in The Merlot Murders, returns with yet another murder to solve, more threats to the survival of her winery, created by both Mother Nature, toxic chemicals, and the EPA, just to name a few, an ongoing "battle of the wits" with her estate winemaker, an alcoholic sister, and a new love interest and potential competitor who drops in from "across the pond". This time the murder victim is an unpleasant political candidate who just happens to be the wife of the doctor responsible for saving Lucies life when she was involved in the automobile accident that left her with a disfigured foot. There are a variety of sub-plots and the twists and turns they take are engrossing. As for the characters, they are well draw and each possesses a very distinct voice. My favorite, and the one I can personally relate to, is Lucies friend Kit who is a rather boisterous individual with a zest for life, a hearty appetite and a philosophy that is pretty well summed up in four words "The diet starts tomorrow". Lucies angst concerning her phycical disability was understandable in The Merlot Murders but began to wear a little thin by the end of this book. I certainly hope that by the time I read book three, The Bordeaux Betrayal, she will have left her personal pity party, accepted what is and moved on with her life.

  • K. East
    2019-04-30 03:38

    It is rare that I give up on an audiobook but I came really close on this one. First of all, the narrator was different than in the first book in the series, a cardinal sin that this production company doesn't seem to understand. I found this female narrator very abrasive in her rendition, making the exchanges between Quinn and Lucy, Mia and Lucy sound like full scale war even for casual conversations. It was like listening to a disfunctional familyHowever, the primary reason I had such trouble with this volume was the simpering character of Lucy. In the first book, she let her brother, Eli, treat her like an imbecile and in this one, it is Quinn. Both men are overbearing, condescending, chest-thumping men that treated Lucy like she was insignificant and incapable of any rational thought. I found her behavior with them so aggravating that listening became a chore rather than a pleasure. I think I may be done with this character and this series.

  • Amy
    2019-04-24 05:48

    I wasn't entirely certain I wanted to continue the series after I wrote my last review but I somehow figured that the later books would be much easier to follow and more interesting. Turns out I was right about that. I like this book significantly more than the last. I liked how the ending turned out, and of course I'm not going to elaborate because I don't want to spoil it, but it was kind of a surprise. I enjoyed getting to know Lucy and Quinn a lot better in this novel as well as getting to see Mia out in a different context. As always Elliot is still a jerk but what do you want? And of course he's a new characters as well. It will be interesting to see how the new neighbor works out. The story had a lot of different aspects to it and different meandering trails. I don't mean that in a bad way, just that you kind of wander around the story a little bit and get to see some of the "scenery". That may or may not make any sense. But I do look forward to reading the next book in the series.

  • Ed
    2019-04-23 06:48

    #2 in the Wine Country Mysteries. This entry sparkles with wine lore and Virginia history of the civil war era. Lucie continues the tension with vintner, Quinn Santori, from the prior series entry The Merlot Murders (2006), but the reader wishes he could shake her and tell her to stop dithering and talk to the man.Wine Country mystery - A bizarre May frost threatens Lucie Montgomery's Virginia winery operation. After spending the night keeping her vines from freezing, the easily peeved Lucie is less than thrilled to find the pesticide-contaminated body of Georgia Greenwood, a local politician, at the edge of her fields. Lucie leaves the investigating to the police, but is dismayed when her close friend Ross, Georgia's husband, becomes a suspect. What's more, the EPA disapproves of her cavalier handling of pesticides, and her younger sister is on the brink of alcoholism.

  • DerekErb
    2019-05-09 07:39

    I read this, the second in the series, immediately after reading the first in the series: The Merlot Murders.It was enjoyable, predictable and easy to read. I had become only slightly annoyed by the gimmicky formula of a constant sudden occurence of a vital event at the end of each chapter in the first book. Unfortunately this continued in this book and got on my nerves after a while. It's sometimes like reading a cheap old radio script. I can even imagine the organ chiming in as we learn "he's dead" or "she's left" or "he's arrested" or something similar at the end of each chapter.I am going to have to read a totally different book, by a different author, before coming back to this series as the formula is too annoying.I have to admit I also do not find our main character, Lucie Montgomery, that likable.

  • Alice
    2019-05-12 04:39

    Virginia wine country, the EPA, a Senate race, local elections, a budding alcoholic sister, miscommunication with her winemaker and the need to protect her beloved doctor are Lucie Montgomery’s concerns in this second volume of Crosby Virginia wine country mysteries.Applying Occam’s Razor is a standard procedure for detectives and therefore mystery writers and readers. ( In the Large print edition Pg 205,) Crosby reminds the reader that they should be applying it when Kit, a friend of Lucie, explains the theory: Occam’s Razor – KISS (Keep It Simply Stupid) theory of fourteen century. Occam was a Franciscan friar, so he lived a simple, Spartan life and that’s his theory. Don’t make anything more complicated than it is. …”razor part” shave off the assumptions that don’t make any difference in the outcome. Therefore it should not be surprise when the murderer is revealed.

  • Beth
    2019-05-07 02:28

    A good follow-up to the first book in this series, especially in terms of character development. The author uses the setting of a winery to good effect, especially how day-to-day business challenges affect personal relationships.I'd quibble with the way she presents the Civil War, but I think perhaps the author doesn't feel the need to challenge the typical white Southerner's viewpoint. Too bad, but maybe she feels it's too much of a digression from the mystery.Picky editor's note: Still too many run-on sentences in this one, like the first. I really wish Simon & Schuster would hire a better copyeditor and/or proofreader. Is it that hard to find someone who knows basic punctuation rules? I don't think so! (And of course, I'm still surprised that the author, a former reporter for a major newspaper, doesn't know better.)

  • Snap
    2019-05-05 05:51

    I'm very glad I read the article in Culture Map written by a local food critic. She suggested several "culinary" mystery series including the Wine Country Mysteries. I'm becoming quite fond of Lucie Montgomery and her friends. In THE CHARDONNAY CHARADE the wife of Lucie's doctor is murdered in a very grotesque way. This book is a cozy and while not hard-boiled, it's a little "heavy" so let's call it soft-boiled! Well written, lots of information about wine and wine making in Virginia. Beautiful descriptions of the Blue Ridge Mountains and surrounding countryside. A little American history - colonial and civil war. There are several more books in the series. I think my summer reading is going to be very good.

  • Andrea
    2019-05-19 10:36

    3.5 is probably better. I knew who did it and pretty much why. But that didn't dtract from it. It was really satisfying to be right and see the main character come to that. The romance was okay. It didn't seem to go much of anywhere. So it makes me wonder why it is there. However it was a realistic trajectory and not forced. Pretty good cozy mystery.

  • Mary
    2019-04-25 08:42

    If you are OK with the general premise of 'some person who has nothing to do with it gets herself mixed up in a murder investigation and despite having no actual skills or knowledge related to crime solving is able to find and confront the murderer before the police do' then this is a perfectly fine novel. I am finding that this model of mystery novel is irritating me (it didn't used to, but seems to be doing so now).That said, the extensive information about the history of the Commonwealth of Virginia and the wine industry there was very interesting. The civil-war knowledge of random characters seems a bit over-the-top, but I have known people from VA who could spout civil war battle facts just like that. Apparently it is a regional characteristic.

  • Judy Iliff
    2019-05-13 09:51

    Often times, the second book in a series is not as well done as the first and those that follow the second. Such is not the case with this series. Lucie now owns the vineyard and is trying to bring it back to what it was when her mother was alive. After hosting a benefit for the free clinic, and after trying to save the vines from a freeze, Lucie discovers the body of the doctor's wife on the road. This is the same many who "saved" her after the car crash that crippled her. Now she is determined to save the dr. from being accused of murdering his wife. And where is Randy, one of guys who works at the vineyard and whose band played during the benefit? Quinn, the winemaker, is a perfect foil to Lucie.Another enjoyable read.

  • Tyrannosaurus regina
    2019-04-26 02:46

    I still like this series more than most other cozies I've read, but this second book took some steps in directions that aren't really my cuppa. The love triangle (or quadrangle, or maybe some other geometric shape) felt strange and forced, and when it comes to Lucie and Quinn's relationship I'm being told that it's entirely antagonistic but I'm being shown a much stronger friendship than that. And the repeated focus on Kit's weight and eating habits was uncomfortable at best. But again I liked the competence of the police (whose role again was appropriate but not intrusive) and Lucie's realistic approach to her own investigations—she asks more questions than assumes she knows what's going on better than anyone, and knows when she oversteps.

  • Kari
    2019-05-22 08:37

    The second book in this series was also enjoyable. Lucie has decided to keep the family vineyard, and, though a bit strained, her relationship with her wine expert Quinn continues to develop. The book begins with the threat of a late-May freeze and the effect it will have on the grapes. After a night with a helicopter flying low over the fields to prevent frost, Lucie discovers the body of local politician Georgia, her face disfigured with the chemicals being used on a recently-planted vine. Domestic problems continue with younger-sister Mia, who at age 20, is arrested for public drunkeness and might face bigger issues. A second love interest in introduced with the handsome, wealthy Brit Mick Dunne, who decides to purchase the property adjacent to Lucie's.

  • Mars
    2019-05-17 09:44

    I liked this one, but not quite as much as the first one in the Wine Country series. However, that is likely because I read about a third of it at the beginning of the year and didn't have access to it again until November to read the rest. I do enjoy the way she weaves wine information throughout the book, and I love the Virginia setting. I also like the fact that the main character uses a cane - she writes about people with disabilities in a matter-of-fact way that, as a person who also uses a cane sometimes, doesn't come across as overdone or fake to me at all. Overall, good for a light and easy mystery read, preferably accompanied by a glass of wine.