I like wine. A lot. But I didn’t know that it takes 800 grapes to make one bottle, and that was only one of the tidbits I picked up reading this fast paced, heartwarming novel.
At its heart this is a story about a family, but it happens that this family owns a small, biodynamic vineyard in Sonoma – and were one of the first families to settle there to make wine. The story is told from the viewpoint of the daughter, Georgia, a successful lawyer in southern California, and begins at her last wedding gown fitting. As she looks out the window, she sees her fiancé strolling down the street with a drop dead gorgeous movie star and a little girl. She runs out after them, finds out that the little girl is his daughter and then Georgia makes a beeline for home – the vineyard.
Georgia’s parents are having problems, but they haven’t told her anything. She walks in and finds a towel clad man coming out of her parent’s bedroom – and the man is not her father. Then she finds out that her father is selling the vineyard to a “factory” wine maker – a large, successful commercial winery, and that the closing is right after her vineyard wedding, and she is incensed.
This is a family that is loaded with secrets, but their love for one another helps keep them afloat. The story moves around various timelines as it follows all the family members, but the chapters are short and the story is easy to follow. Besides all the family drama, there is romantic drama of the best kind as well.
I loved the setting, which becomes almost another character in this warm, wonderful novel. If you like wine and romance (and really, who doesn’t?) then this is the book for you.
6/15 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch
EIGHT HUNDRED GRAPES by Laura Dave. Simon & Schuster (June 2, 2015). ISBN 978-1476789255. 272p.