Sunday, July 10, 2016

Once Upon a Wine

Happy Sunday!  The beginning of a new week.  We have just finished our Sunday dinner.  I grew up with a big dinner every Sunday night, and I have continued the tradition. My daughter, Betsy comes over to enjoy it. We had Quick Spaghetti.  It uses Italian stewed tomatoes and tomato sauce (as well as hamburger and sausage) versus spaghetti sauce (when I let it cook all day).  It is a tasty and satisfying dish (the sausage gives it a little zip).

Once Upon a Wine by Beth Kendrick is a sweet, romance novel.  Cammie October Breyer is living in Los Angeles when she receives a call from her cousin, Kat.  Kat needs Cammie to return home to Black Dog Bay, Delaware to help with her Aunt Ginger (Kat’s mother but she also raised Cammie after her mother passed away).  Ginger has just bought a Lost Dog Vineyard in Delaware, and Kat wants help reasoning with her (she thinks it is a bad idea).  Ginger has cashed out her pension plan, her retirement account and sold her house as well as most of the furniture inside it to buy the vineyard.  Cammie has nothing left for her in LA.  Her restaurant failed once her boyfriend (the chef) left for another restaurant (Cammie was good with the hospitality part of the business, but she is no chef). Ginger wants the three of them to spend the summer together, and then they can reevaluate the vineyard.  But if they want to get a good price for the place, they need to keep the grape vines alive and fix up the property.  Only problem is that they do not know anything about vineyards or wine making.  The three of them work together to cultivate their hidden talents and try to make a success of the vineyard.  It is natural for Cammie to run into Ian McKinlay (who owns a farm nearby).  The two of them had a summer romance when Cammie was twenty-two and had just finished college.  Their romance is rekindled over strawberries and wine.  Kat is having some troubles and is glad to have Cammie to talk to.  Kat has just retired from her career as a professional skateboarder (I think that is the right term).  She does not know what to do with herself (she suffered a bad injury).  Kat is married to Josh, a philosophy professor (a great guy).  Kat needs to figure out what to do now that she can no longer ride a skateboard.  She is spending the summer away from husband and keeps pushing him away (not good for their marriage).  It is going to be an interesting summer in Black Dog Bay.  A summer of discovery and second chances. 

Once Upon a Wine is a pleasing romance novel that is easy to read.  It is a book is about choices, second chances, romance, and developing hidden talents.  It shows how failure can lead to the fulfillment of a dream (if you want it to).  I liked the nice change of pace that this book provided.  I give Once Upon a Wine 3.5 out of 5 stars.  I have to admit that Kat got on my nerves a little bit, and Cammie talked about her failed restaurant too much (she should never have opened a restaurant in the first place).  I liked the addition of the cute French Bulldog, Jacques.  He was adorable.  Overall, Once Upon a Wine is an easy breezy book that is a good summer read. 

Once Upon a Wine release date got pushed back from July 5 to July 26. You can pre-order it on Amazon (as well as other book sites).  I received a complimentary copy of the book in exchange for an honest and fair review.

I am off to put clean sheets on my bed and talk to a cat about a television.  Flappy Doo (he flapped his ears a lot when he was a kitten) keeps turning on one of the televisions.  I turn it off and he turns it on. Flappy Doo has decided he wants to live in our living room (he is even willing to brave the dogs).  We will see how it works out.  I am currently enjoying Arsenic with Austen by Katherine Bolger Hyde.  I hope all of you have a great night.  I will be back tomorrow with another review.  Take care and Happy Reading!

The Avid Reader

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