‘A Taste of Merlot’ by Heather Hayford

atom hhSTORY: Raise your glass and join Heather Heyford as she pours a second serving in her series following these headstrong wine heiresses in their quest to strike out on their own…

Merlot St. Pierre is struggling to break free from her family name. Her college classmates whisper behind her back that her passion for jewelry design is little more than a hobby, since she’ll always have her father’s fortune. But Meri is determined to prove them wrong, and with the help of a handsome jewelry buyer, she just may taste her first sip of success—as long as she can hide who she really is…

Mark Newman’s family owns a chain of high-end jewelry stores, and he’s working hard to get out from under his aunt’s thumb and prove he has a good eye and a head for business. He’s certain Meri’s designs could be the next big thing, but he’ll have to convince her that she can use her famous last name to her advantage. As their business partnership takes root, an attraction begins to flourish—but they’ll both find that love, like wine, takes time to perfect…

REVIEW: Merlot (Meri) St. Pierre is a jewelry major at Gates College and has just won the college’s Purchase Prize for one of her creations.  She and her sisters, Chardonnay (Char) and Sauvignon (Savvy) are the daughter of the well-known owner of the St. Pierre Winery in Napa Valley.  The Purchase Prize means that the piece will be kept in the college’s permanent collection.  Growing up as a wealthy gal, Meri has always encountered jealously from her fellow students and college has been no different for her.  Many of her jealous acquaintances feel that since her father has donated so much money to the college, that is the reason she won the prize.  Hurt from the latest snub by other students, she has decided that she will forego the last year of college.  Most of it will be about marketing and Meri feels that she already has a good idea of how she wants to go about selling her jewelry by opening her own jewelry store.

Mark Harmon is part of Harrington’s, the family-owned high-end jewelry stores.  Each year, he visits the colleges looking for new talent and his favorite area, of course, is the jewelry.  When Mark sees the piece that Meri created that won the prize, he is awed by her talent and is determined to find her so Harrington’s can purchase and promote her jewelry.  As she is going by another name hoping to succeed on her talent and not her name, searching her down has been a long process for him.  But he finally finds her online and tracks her down.  She is thrilled at his offer and eager to accept.  However, Mark must get approval from his aunt, the largest shareholder of Harrington’s.  In the meantimes. Meri and Mark spark an attraction that balloons to a full-blown love affair.

Unfortunately, Meri’s old college rival steps in and begins copying her signature hidden stone “statement” on her jewelry, in addition to trying to lure Mark away from Meri.  This is when things get hot.  But not as hot as when both Meri and Mark reveal who they truly are.  Will they be able to sustain their relationship or will Meri end up pushing Mark away?

This novel just did not grab me.  While the story was believable, some things came across as a bit cheesy such as the names of the St. Pierre daughters.  However, I’m sure that many other readers will probably enjoy it.

Connie for b2b

Complimentary copy provided by the publisher

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About Bookworm

I'm married, working, and have grown and independent kids. I love gardening, reading and painting. My favorite TV show is Dancing With the Stars! Television shows have gone to the crap house. My favorite movie of all time is "Last of the Mohicans" with Daniel Day Lewis. Second best is "Titanic" and third "Passion of the Christ". I am an avid reader and I love talking about the books I’ve read, especially romance novels. I will warn you though: I am prone to rants and raves about a lot of things!

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