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Publisher's Summary

Sweetbitter meets The Nightingale in this pause-resisting novel about a woman who returns to her family’s ancestral vineyard in Burgundy and unexpectedly uncovers a lost diary, an unknown relative, and a secret her family has been keeping since World War II.

To become one of only a few hundred certified wine experts in the world, Kate must pass the notoriously difficult Master of Wine examination. She’s failed twice before; her third attempt will be her last chance. Suddenly finding herself without a job and with the test a few months away, she travels to Burgundy to spend the fall at the vineyard estate that has belonged to her family for generations. There she can bolster her shaky knowledge of Burgundian vintages and reconnect with her cousin Nico and his wife, Heather, who now oversee day-to-day management of the grapes. The one person Kate hopes to avoid is Jean-Luc, a talented young winemaker and her first love.

At the vineyard house, Kate is eager to help her cousin clean out the enormous basement that is filled with generations of discarded and forgotten belongings. Deep inside the cellar, behind a large armoire, she discovers a hidden room containing a cot, some Resistance pamphlets, and an enormous cache of valuable wine. Piqued by the secret space, Kate begins to dig into her family’s history - a search that takes her back to the dark days of World War II and introduces her to a relative she never knew existed, a great-half-aunt who was a teenager during the Nazi occupation.

As she learns more about her family, the line between resistance and collaboration blurs, driving Kate to find the answers to two crucial questions: Who, exactly, did her family aid during the difficult years of the war? And what happened to six valuable bottles of wine that seem to be missing from the cellar’s collection?

©2018 Ann Mah (P)2018 HarperCollins Publishers

Critic Reviews

“If you enjoyed my Sarah’s Key and Kristin Hannah’s The Nightingale, then this wonderful book by Ann Mah is for you.” (Tatiana de Rosnay, author)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

good strong characters

and not entirely predictable. not sure why the narrator read the dates in half French and half English. that was strange.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Splendid

An absolutely delightful read. I was captivated by the story from beginning to end and charmed by the beautiful prose making the story so tangible that I could taste and feel it!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Excellent read!

Both the story and narration were engaging. I could not stop reading until it was finished.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

So so

Liked the presence of the story but the stated and dated dialogue and voice of characters were strange to me

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Bonnie
  • Sapphire, NC United States
  • 10-13-18

Passion of Nightingale with an education on wine

Beautifully and passionately written, a historical glimpse of life in Burgundy in the present, tied to the horrors of the past. The lasting beauty of the wine
connecting the two. Great narration also!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

so good!

The story kept me enthralled and the Saskia gave such a good performance! I really enjoyed the history and present represented in the book.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • LB
  • 09-28-18

Engrossing modern/WW2 novel

If you love historical fiction, stories having to do with WW2 or love wine, this book is for you. My library is full of historical fiction and this one is up near the top. Not since the Nightingale have I had a book set partially in WW2 that has kept me so enthralled. I loved how Ms Mah was able to weave modern family stories with their unknown past and it was fun to see and American pulled into this world as well. Highly recommend.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Alexis
  • S.F. Bay Area, United States
  • 09-20-18

STUNNED! I loved this novel!

I love novels set in France. I didn’t have high expectations for this one, but because of the setting and premise, I decided to give it a listen. I was stunned by how wonderful it was on every score. Well drawn characters, solid mystery and performed by an artist with excellent French and American dialects in her toolbox. I had previously known this author only as a blogger and foodie, and I’m so impressed by her mastery of fiction, as well. Well done, Ann Mah! May this be the first of many wonderful novels, preferably ones set in France!

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

I almost gave up on it

Very slow start and I almost put it down. It takes place in three different time periods. Wish it was less present day and more during WW2. Needed more about the works of the French resistance
I’ve read far far more interesting books Narrator was good

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Story and narration blended like fine wine!

Carried my audio book everywhere . Good solid story. Enjoyed like I did The Nightingale . Would definitely recommend it.