What if your beloved fiancé, he of the crinkly smile and the irresistible British accent, had kept a life-changing secret from you? And what if, just a week before your dream wedding, you discovered it?
When these questions become realities for bride-to-be Georgia Ford, she does the only thing that seems to make sense. She runs. She hops in her car and drives through the night, from Los Angeles to Sonoma, to her safe haven, to her messy and loving family and their acclaimed family winery. Georgia craves the company of those who know her best and whom she truly knows. And on the eve of the harvest, Georgia knows she'll find solace - and distraction - in familiar rituals. But when Georgia arrives home, nothing is at all familiar. Her parents, her brothers, the family business are all unrecognizable. It seems her fiancé isn't the only one who's been keeping secrets. And, much to Georgia's dismay, it seems likely that this harvest may be the family's last.
Best-selling author Laura Dave has been dubbed "a wry observer of modern love" (USA Today), a "decadent storyteller" (Marie Claire), and "compulsively readable" (Woman's Day). Set in the lush backdrop of Sonoma's wine country, Eight Hundred Grapes is a heartbreaking, funny, and deeply evocative novel about love, marriage, family, wine, and the treacherous terrain in which they all intersect.
©2015 Laura Dave. All rights reserved. (P)2015 Simon & Schuster, Inc. All rights reserved.
"Narrator Joy Osmanski's feisty delivery is just right for Georgia, the 30-year-old lawyer who discovers that her too-good-to-be-true fiancé is too good to be true.... Whether recounting flashbacks or dealing with present-day crises, Osmanski's performance is winning." (AudioFile)
It doesn't take long after the initial setup to realize how this book is going to end. Still, the setting (a vineyard) and a variety of subplots keep it interesting. Unfortunately, the main subplot--the main character's fiancé has a secret; she must figure out whether to forgive him and go on with their wedding--is inherently flawed. Why? The guy is totally unlikeable. It's hard to be invested in the main character's final decision because the reader honestly does not care what happens to this guy. Instead of being an intriguing "what will she choose?" the reader just becomes annoyed at her inability to do so--making the "big reveal" at the end far more of a whimper than a bang.
I have never heard such a poor British accent in my life. Did the narrator not read the book beforehand? There is also an atrocious Southern belle in here whose voice was remarkably grating. Maybe I would have gotten a better feel for the fiancé had he not been voiced so poorly.
I enjoy light, fluffy romances, and this looked to be an interesting one. However, from the first chapter I could tell that, unless the main character had a major change in attitude, I wasn't going to like her. Unfortunately, she never changed, and I hated her through the whole book.
Worse is the absolutely predictable plot. I was hoping that maybe, just maybe, the writer wouldn't take the obvious route, but she did. In fact, she really went out of her way to make it happen. There are so many other ways this novel could have ended that would have felt much more real, but that just doesn't happen.
The one positive thing I can say about this book is that the narrator gives it her best, and I really like her. She's probably the only thing that helped me keep on going. Kudos to her for putting in a fine performance for a book that even she must have known was terrible.
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This book sounded promising a first: a woman learns about her fiancé’s bomb-shell secret just days before her wedding… juicy!
But then that’s it. She goes home to her boring family and slowly learns all their relationship secrets; basically EVERYONE is falling apart.
IT WAS SO BORING! Nothing really happens and her family is so uninteresting I didn’t care a jot for any of their dilemmas.
The characters were all very two-dimensional, there was no real plot, nothing to really think about, no big insights…
I wish I hadn’t bothered – it was mediocre at best.
The characters were a bit boring and seemed to be moaning, I just could not connect
This is the same story, it has been done before and was not something new or fresh.
The story was so predictable. Everyone in this family had relationship issues.
Still searching for a really good sink your teeth in story.
The story never had any happiness or good things happen to the characters. Very slow and nothing note worthy or rich in the story line. The narrator does a bad job of having a male voice that is believable. One of the characters has a terrible Bristih accent.
I wanted to like this story more than I did. It was fine, just not as good as I was expecting. There's a lot of drama that's sort of resolved, but it just wasn't that satisfying. The author also neglected to do her research, which made me question the authenticity of other elements (like the winemaking). For the record, it only takes five-and-a-half hours to drive from LA to San Francisco, not nine - not sure how she came up with that - or why she didn't Google it.
I liked this book. It was different and kept a good storyline. I didn't like the narrator though. She didn't sound like someone who would read this kind of book and her male voices were off. That was the only thing that bothered me. Otherwise it was a quick read that was cute.
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