Book Review

‘Eight Hundred Grapes’ by Laura Dave

ehg ldSTORY: There are secrets you share, and secrets you hide…

Growing up on her family’s Sonoma vineyard, Georgia Ford learned some important secrets. The secret number of grapes it takes to make a bottle of wine: eight hundred. The secret ingredient in her mother’s lasagna: chocolate. The secret behind ending a fight: hold hands.

But just a week before her wedding, thirty-year-old Georgia discovers her beloved fiancé has been keeping a secret so explosive, it will change their lives forever.

Georgia does what she’s always done: she returns to the family vineyard, expecting the comfort of her long-married parents, and her brothers, and everything familiar. But it turns out her fiancé is not the only one who’s been keeping secrets…

REVIEW: Dan is a scientist who has always wanted to make wine.  So, he takes a big step of finding the perfect acreage in California and with the help of his wife, Jen, forms The Last Straw Vineyard.  Twin sons, Bobby and Finn, and a daughter, Georgia, grow up in the midst of the winery, becoming well-educated on the wine making process.  But for Georgia, it has always been a true love.

After Georgia graduated from law school, she works for some time in a law firm in Los Angeles.  There, she met Ben, an Englishman, to whom she is engaged and soon to marry.  Their plan is to move to London after the wedding which is to be held at the family winery.  But when Georgia is at her last wedding gown fitting, she sees Ben walking down the street with a beautiful woman and a little girl. Georgia runs out of the store to say hello to Ben.  But his look of guilt combined with the little girl calling him “Daddy” shocks her and sends her driving straight home to the winery.  As her brothers both live nearby, she hopes that being back in the bosom of her family will help her decide if she can go through with the marriage or not.

Hoping to find comfort, Georgia soon realizes that she may just have to “take a number.”  Her brother, Bobby, married and father to twin sons of his own is having marital problems, and her other brother, Finn, unmarried and running a bar, has his own problems as well.  Oh, but let’s not forget Mom and Dad. They are estranged and have just signed papers to sell the winery to a conglomerate that produces wines comparable to “Two Buck Chuck.”

With the last harvest season upon them, the family comes together to pitch in.  At the same time, souls are bared and problems are shared.

What a completely dysfunctional family and Georgia is the worst.  Back and forth on her decision to marry Ben:  yes, no, yes no.  Gah!  My head was spinning!  Yes, there is a bit of humor in the book but I simply found it one that did not appeal to me.  However, there are many people who have loved it.  So, give it a try and share your review.

Connie for b2b


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