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The Viognier Vendetta (Wine Country Mysteries #5)

3.72  ·  Rating Details  ·  608 Ratings  ·  84 Reviews
Ellen Crosby’s "beguiling" (Kirkus Reviews) fifth mystery takes readers into Washington’s corridors of power, where Lucie Montgomery uncovers a political and financial scandal while trying to locate her missing friend.

WHEN LUCIE MONTGOMERY VISITS Washington, D.C., during cherry blossom season she doesn’t expect her reunion with old friend Rebecca Natale is a setup. But Re
Kindle Edition, 384 pages
Published (first published 2010)
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Apr 23, 2011 Barbara rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
Love this series. I don't know why it took me so long to get to this book. I think I should have read it sooner, since I had trouble with the history - couldn't really remember some things that happened in previous books. Don't be alarmed by that statement - I don't think you need to read them in order to enjoy them. It was just little things for me.

This mystery is basically set in Washington D.C., not far from Lucy Montgomery's vineyard. I found the descriptions of Washington and it famous land
Tyrannosaurus regina
I'm in it for the vineyard and the winery, when it comes to these books, so being that this one was set almost entirely in Washington DC, I wasn't super keen. And I feel like I'm a broken record on this particular point, but the completely irrelevant focus on Kit's weight and the constant shaming of her every time she dares to eat something grates worse and worse with each book. The 'code' that the mystery was centred on was honestly a pretty ridiculous plot point, and as always—even when I enjo ...more
Lindsey Duncan
Sep 03, 2014 Lindsey Duncan rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
When vineyard owner Lucie Montgomery receives a phone call out of nowhere from her tempestuous friend Rebecca - who she hasn't seen in twelve years - she finds herself drawn into a web of lies, betrayal and coded messages buried within poetry.

I picked up this book by accident: I was actually looking for non-fiction books on Viognier. However, I love a good mystery with an amateur sleuth, so I decided to take a chance on it. It has all the right elements - lies, intrigue, an evocative setting, ex
Apr 11, 2011 Beth rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mysteries
Interesting topical theme of Ponzi schemes and investment frauds--generally well handled, especially with the particular take of how that might affect a small, interconnected community. On the other hand, I'm a little tired of the supposedly fiery romance that isn't going anywhere. Why is she so hung up on him? I wonder. He's overly macho and fairly self-centered. Can't see the appeal there.
Carla Bayha
Dec 02, 2012 Carla Bayha rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
One of my favorite mystery series. Crosby has the right blend of puzzle, place, history, and romance. As a bonus, this one features DC gardens. My highest tribute is that it hasn't mattered that I've read all of these out of order--still enjoyed.
Jul 04, 2014 Anna rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: better-junk-food
This had one of the more suspenseful plots I can recall of the series, but far less Virginia wine lore than usual. Instead, the book delves far more into the history and architecture of Washington, D.C., for its setting, artfully weaving in the poetry of Alexander Pope. Crosby's done a masterful job as usual, weaving together a gripping plot, vivid characterization and smart, strong prose.

Perhaps because she surely wrote it in the wake of the Madoff scandal, however, the book struck me as one o
Ginger Weirich
Oct 26, 2015 Ginger Weirich rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An interesting mystery with a bit of US history interwoven. I’m sure I’ve missed some character development by not reading this series in order; however, the story does stand well on its own. A Virginia winery owner winds up involved with some very bad people perpetrating a major ponzie scheme on a national level and in Washington, D.C. Several people lose their lives in the process of uncovering said scheme, but all comes to light in the end, and justice gets her due. A rather light mystery as ...more
This review is of the audio book. I believe it is the same narrator of the first in the series that I listened to, but this time she just didn't "click" w/ me. The attitude she gave some character's lines didn't seem to me like the way they would be saying things. It got irritating. As always, when you don't like the narrator it is difficult to really judge the book. I enjoyed "Merlot Mystery" but found this book too much like a bad soap opera. Very little about wine making unlike the first in t ...more
The Viognier Vendetta by Ellen Crosby is book 5 of the Wine Country Mystery series set in modern-day rural Virginia. Lucie Montgomery owns and operates a vineyard established by her late parents. Lucie’s vineyard is set in rural Virginia, but within driving distance of the nation’s capital – complete opposites. When Lucie is contacted out of the blue by an old friend from college days, she agrees to meet Rebecca mostly out of curiosity. They have a short visit at the Lincoln Memorial, and Rebecc ...more
Dec 01, 2010 Nancy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ellen Crosby’s Wine Country Mysteries is yet another series that I look forward to reading. Her lead character, Lucie Montgomery, is warm and inviting with just enough sass and intelligence to entertain a reader without being too sugar sweet or condescending.

The fifth book in the series brings Lucie Montgomery to Washington DC during the cherry blossom season to meet up with an old friend, Rebecca Natele. But this meeting wasn’t the spur of the moment unplanned event that Lucie was expecting. So
Judy Iliff
Mar 31, 2011 Judy Iliff rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2011
This is the 5th book in the Wine Country Mystery series. Luckily for me, a new one is scheduled to be released in August!

Lucy Montgomery's friend Rebecca, from whom she hasn't heard since they both graduated from college, invites Lucy to Washington, D.C., to attend a black-tie affair in honor of Rebecca's boss, a philanthropist and Wall Street Investment counselor. Once Lucy gets to the hotel, she receives a message asking her to meet Rebecca at the Lincoln Memorial. They meet, but Rebecca seems
Another good one! I'm so disappointed that the next one is her last, at least for the foreseeable future. It was fun to take a trip to D.C. and get out of the vineyard for awhile, although I had this odd feeling of homecoming when Lucie did return to the vineyard. The best part of these books to me is the characters, where they live and how they live. Lucie is so great, I love how hard she works, I love her relationship with Quinn (what is going on there?!), I love her home and her land. Anyway, ...more
From the moment I read the first page, I was captivated by Ellen Crosby's latest installment in her Virginia Wine Country Mystery series. I really think that this is one of the best in the series thus far!

The book opens with a reunion between Lucie Montgomery, proprietor of the Montgomery Estate Vineyard in Atoka, Virginia, and Rebecca Natale, a college friend that Lucie has not seen in years. Rebecca is working as an advisor to internationally known financier, Thomas Asher, who is also a keen c
Oct 04, 2010 Kristen rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2010
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
#5 in the Wine Country Mysteries. Lucie spends most of her time away from the vineyard to this entry's detriment. A friend in her freshman year at college has ignored Lucie in the 12 years since but Lucie comes to Washington when requested; accosted by an obnoxious drunk in her hotel lobby and rescued by the concierge, she comes when the drunk calls her the next day; and, introduced by the drunk to a stuffy congressional staffer, she travels to a clandestine meeting with said staffer when summon ...more
This is the fifth in a mystery series about a woman who owns and operates a vineyard in Virginia. She is from a wealthy (though they lost the money), distinguished Virginia family, kind of blue-bloody and old guard. The book has interesting regional information about the South, Thomas Jefferson, and the Civil War, and a nice sense of atmosphere (the descriptions of the vineyard and its buildings are effective, as are the descriptions of monuments in Washington D.C.). The heroine, Lucie, is intel ...more
Jul 14, 2013 Sheri rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really liked the suspense in this Washington D.C. based mystery. The Viognier wine made at the winery Lucie Montgomery owns took a backseat to finding out what happened to her old friend from college. Rebecca who left her after a brief visit and a hotel suite in Washington, D.C. Lucie and friends have to find out what Rebecca's clues mean and what she left behind for them to discover. All the influential people in her Atoka, Virginia neighborhood are involved or have money tied to this venture ...more
Dec 05, 2011 Kathleen rated it really liked it
I had forgotten about this mystery series until recently. In addition to learning about vineyards in Virginia and their proud heritage in American history, the author consistently weaves a challenging mystery. Much of the story here takes place in DC with detailed descriptions of its stately architecture. The sordid, sleazy actions of powerful “players” sadly reflect much of what we are used to reading about especially when an elaborate Ponzi scheme is at the root of all that is evil. The plot i ...more
May 15, 2016 JodiP rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm always looking for new mystery series, and thought a wine-related one would be fun. This one, though, I think is a bit lite for me. There were just too many tidy coincidences, although I really appreciated the strong female leads. The arch-cuteness of the small community got a bit much as well. So, while I finished it, Idon't think I'll seek out the rest of the series.
Nov 12, 2013 Minervaking rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is one of the Wine Country Mysteries featuring winery owner, Lucie Montgomery. In this story, Lucie’s college friend, Rebecca, whom she hasn’t seen in 12 years, invites Lucie to Washington, D.C. She is looking forward to seeing Rebecca, but can’t help but wonder why she contacted her all of a sudden. Rebecca is now the protégé of a billionaire investor and philanthropist and after spending a few hours together in Washington visiting the monuments; Rebecca tells her that she must run an erra ...more
Renée Williams
I prefer when the story is centered around the vineyard. There was not as much of a connection with the characters for me in this installment of the series. It felt like Lucie's and Quinn's encounters were just thrown in there so that we knew he still existed. It's kind of like watching a series and someone makes a guest appearance.

Jul 05, 2015 Lois rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Loosely connected to wine production and the vineyard; an old friend of Lucie's contacts her and asks her to meet in Washington DC. When the friend disappears, Lucie suspects foul play and attempts to find out what happened to her and if her employer is involved in a Ponzi scheme with investments. A fun tour of D.C. with overtones of Dan Brown as Lucie tries to understand the clues her friend left her in a book of poetry, involving sites in the D.C. area.
Sep 03, 2010 Katie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2010
After looking forward to this book for so long, I have to admit, I was kind of disappointed. Part of the "draw" of these books is the comfy-cozy feeling associated with the vineyard and surrounding towns and villages being the setting, but with the first half of the book taking place in the stark and stressful Washington DC, it lacked that element at the beginning. So it took me to about the halfway point to get really into the book (when Lucy returned to the vineyard). Also, I pretty much hated ...more
Jul 08, 2015 Paulette rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Excellent but I read most of it during my long commutes home. I prefer reading Crosby's winery mysteries with actual wine. I particularly enjoyed this story that has a Bernie Madoff theme and takes place (mostly) in D.C. A good, fast entertaining read that makes you want to open a bottle of vino and chill out.
May 17, 2013 Shannon rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Not my favorite in this series. Overall, the series started out strong but (in my opinion) has gotten weaker over the span of the last few books. This book was both simplistic and overwhelming. Simplistic in that I figured out "who done it" almost from page one and overwhelming in that there is just way to much in the way of details and facts that didn't add to the plot at all. It was almost like the author threw in a lot of historical facts and descriptions of Wahshington DC as fillers to make ...more
Bobbie N
Lucie Montgomery visits Washington, D.C. at the invitation of an old friend she hasn't seen in years, and finds herself caught up in a world of intrigue when her friend suddenly goes missing.
Apr 02, 2014 Judy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm not a mystery reader too often but I do enjoy Ellen Crosby's books. They combine history as well as information about wines and wineries. It's light reading that holds my interest to the end.
Virginia vineyard owner Lucie Montgomery had not heard from her college friend Rebecca for twelve years. When Rebecca insists that Lucie meet her in Washington, Lucie is curious enough to agree. It's early spring, the slack time for vineyards; Lucie's relationship with her winemaster Quinn seems to be in the doldrums; and maybe it will be good to get past issues with Rebecca settled. But her brief meeting with Rebecca raises more questions than it settles, and the events following are unsettling ...more
Aug 11, 2010 Janet rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the 5th in the Wine Country Mystery Series and has a plot that twists and turns around Washington DC, which is described in loving and intricate detail. Lucie Montgomery, a Virginia vintner, investigates a puzzle left to her by Rebecca, her friend from college, who mysteriously disappeared and may be dead. Despite the murder of Ian, a whistle blower who was trying to expose Sir Thomas Asher, the billionaire investor and philanthropist, as a fraud and a possible attempt on her own life, L ...more
Mar 05, 2016 Laurie rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Could not finish it, the vineyard was virtually ignored; read like a history book rather than a mystery
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Ellen Crosby is the author of 2 mysteries featuring photojournalist Sophie Medina: MULTIPLE EXPOSURE and GHOST IMAGE (Scribner, April, 2015). She has also written six books in the Virginia wine country mystery series featuring winemaker Lucie Montgomery, and MOSCOW NIGHTS, a standalone mystery published in the UK. Before writing fiction, Crosby was a freelance reporter for The Washington Post, Mos ...more
More about Ellen Crosby...

Other Books in the Series

Wine Country Mysteries (6 books)
  • The Merlot Murders (Wine Country Mysteries #1)
  • The Chardonnay Charade (Wine Country Mysteries #2)
  • The Bordeaux Betrayal (Wine Country Mysteries #3)
  • The Riesling Retribution (Wine Country Mysteries #4)
  • The Sauvignon Secret (Wine Country Mysteries, #6)

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