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Murder Uncorked

(A Wine Lover's Mystery #1)

3.67  ·  Rating details ·  1,347 ratings  ·  178 reviews
Nikki Sands was like every other aspiring actress -- waiting tables between jobs. But Nikki had taken serving wines to heart. She knew enough to impress Napa Valley's golden boy, Derek Malveaux, who offered her a job at his vineyard. And though Nikki may have left her dreams of stardom behind, the world of wine is ripe with intrigue -- and the seeds of sleuthing are plante ...more
Paperback, 219 pages
Published October 4th 2005 by Berkley Prime Crime
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Community Reviews

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Average rating 3.67  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,347 ratings  ·  178 reviews

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Linda Strong
Dec 17, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2016

Anyone who knows me, knows I do not like cozies. After reading my preferred genre of hard core police procedurals, murderers, serial killers, etc,. asking me to read a cozy is like offering me ONE vanilla wafer for dessert.

Nikki Sands is an actress, ok, she wants to be an actress. Right now she's working as a waitress, contemplating her life's choices. A run in with "The Bimbo" more or less causes the loss of that job. When "The Bimbo's" date, Derek Malveaux, winds up offering her a job at his
Deanie Nelder
Jan 17, 2021 rated it really liked it
Aspiring actress Nikki Sands is tired of the endless auditions, and tired of being treated like crap by the patrons at the restaurant where she works. So she jumps at the chance to work in management at a Napa Valley winery. She just wasn't expecting to find a dead body on her first day.

The characters are interesting and entertaining. The plot kept me involved through to the end. It's a great start to a new mystery series and I can't wait to read the next one.
Lisa Kay
★★★★☆ I read this nice little cozy mystery for a challenge and ended up being pleasantly surprised with the story, characters, and furtive plot - almost all of which takes place on a vineyard. I will definitely be continuing the series and may even try some of the recipes.
Karen Syed
Mar 15, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mysteries
Let me start this review in a most unusual way. I met Michele Scott at the San Diego Writers Conference in February and was charmed by her easy-going and kind personality. I had a pretty good idea that I would enjoy her books, so I bought the first book in each of her series.

While at another book festival in South Carolina five days later, I met Valentine, the wonder greyhound. Being unfamiliar with this particular temporary member of the Regan Black household (Regan, the author of Justice In
☼♎ Carmen the Bootyshaker Temptress ☼♎

What a twisted beginning to a start of a new friendship. Nikki wasn't looking for trouble but it sure did find her. From what was supposed to be a great job offer turned to a sleuthing position. Someone is killing people in Derricks vineyard but why is the big question and when you find out all the sects you'll wonder what is going on with this crazy bunch.
Chris Curtis
Sep 05, 2010 rated it it was ok
Shelves: mystery
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Oct 27, 2009 rated it it was ok
Loved the first half of the book which focused more on wine and pairings of food with wine. Nikki starts out as a waitress, one who knows her wines. Unbeknownst to her, she serves up wine and food to a sucessful vinyard manager. Derek is suitably impressed with Nikki's wine pairing skills and soon offers her a job at his vineyard...and that's when the murders start happening.

Nikki is nosy enough to investigate the deaths at the vineyard--managing to keep ahead of the killer in her investigation
Maria (Ri)
This fast paced mystery kept me guessing all the way to the end. It is such a tangled web that no one is truly innocent. My only complaint is that Derek seems a little too naive perhaps. I enjoyed learning about wines and reading about the delicious foods to pair with them. It made me so hungry and wanting a beautiful rich glass of wine!! I'll definitely be seeking out other books in this series.
Dec 25, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Nikki Sands is an aspiring actress trying to pay rent as a waitress. After spilling a drink accidentally on a customers date, she suddenly finds herself with a job offer at the customers Napa Valley vineyard.
Nikki goes to Napa and finds the body of the winemaker
Eccentric members of a family, lovers new and old and suspects all around give Nikki the chance to snoop.
A mystery with a twist and recipes and wine suggestions are always a bonus.
Jan 16, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: own
Highly enjoyable cozy murder mystery set in wine country. The plot was a bit unplausible, but easy enough to suspend disbelief. I enjoyed it quite a bit and finished it in short order. I plan to read more in the series.
Oct 07, 2011 rated it it was ok
Shelves: cozy-mystery
Murder Uncorked is okay, but I found myself wanting to like it a more than I did. Perhaps wine fans would enjoy it more; my knowledge of wine extends to knowing that red wine comes from red grapes and so on, as the main character so aptly stated, and thus I didn't have the faintest interest in all the discussion about whether this wine pairs well with that appetizer.

How I feel about a cozy mystery depends heavily on whether I like the main character, and here I couldn't really get behind Nikki S
May 30, 2010 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fiction, mystery
The recipes look yummy, the wine info is neat, and most of the characters are well-developed and interesting. However, it definitely has some narration and plot problems.
Feb 13, 2013 rated it it was amazing
At first I wasn't sure I was going to like this book, about halfway through I couldn't put it down because I wanted to see who the murder was. I enjoyed the twists and turns of the plot. ...more
Ann Croce
Oct 12, 2016 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this cozy mystery. It was fun and fast moving.
Nola Arganbright
Mar 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: cozy-mysteries
An exceptionally well written book in my opinion. I was impressed by the characters and the strong plot and plot twists. the characters were well developed including the secondary characters.
Nikki was a waitress in a local restaurant when she met Derek. He was on a date and she became a target of the date when she was able to discuss the wine and menu knowledgeably. The green eyed monster took over the date and Nikki was dismissed because of the dates complaints.
Derek happened to own his own
Feb 22, 2020 rated it liked it
Read for #Book1CoziesClub

This one took me way too long to read. I would get into it and read a bit but then I wouldn't look at it for weeks. I inadvertently ended up reading another book about wineries at the same time and finished that one first, even though I picked that one up after this one.

At the beginning, I was very interested, but as the book went on, it didn't hold my interest all the way through. There were several characters that I wasn't interested in at all. Some of the conclusion
Jul 28, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: owned
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Alton Motobu
Mar 05, 2019 rated it liked it
Cozy mystery adheres strictly to formula: pretty single 30ish woman moves to small town in N. California wine country, meets two handsome eligible males (one looks like young Robert Redford, the other like Johnny Depp), stumbles into two murders, sneaks around burglarizing homes and offices looking for evidence, contends with local cops who do not like or her aggressive nature. She single handedly solves the mystery, although she is beaten, drugged, and nearly killed. She can unlock anything wit ...more
Jennifer Robb
Mar 11, 2017 rated it really liked it
I liked this book. I'm not a wine lover but I did enjoy learning a bit about wines. I did think the recipes and wine pairings might be a bit overdone. They do interrupt the story for me. I did not guess who the murderers were until it was revealed. I like that there were several different crimes going on with different perpetrators.

I do wonder how the author will sustain this series--unless she plans to have Nikki investigate more than murders. After all, if a murder happens at each Malveaux wi
Aug 01, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-in-series
Nikki is working in a restaurant when she meets Derek who asks her to come work at his café in his vineyard. When they arrive his friend is found dead outside the cottage where Nikki is staying. Fingers point at first toward Derek being the murder then another murder happens and a migrant worker is arrested. Leave it up to Nikki to solve the mystery and save the day.

This was a pretty good book. Took a bit for me to get into it but enjoyed it very much. Will be continuing with the series when I g
Oct 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Just when Nikki has come to grips with the realization that she is not much as an actress and that she feels better at her paying job she gets fired. Miraculously, the other customer is impressed with her skills at pairing wine with food and offers a job doing a similar job along with organizing and also plugging the leak in the finances in his winery. So she goes along to check things out, and before two days have passed, she has discovered two bodies and a book full of suspects. Let the sleuth ...more
Lybo Buchanan
Nov 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery
"Nikki has just set foot on Napa Valleys' rich soil when she realizes her new job may not be as safe as she thought. First off, Derek Malveaux is disconcertingly sexy. Second, his top winemaker is dead in the bushes outside Nikki's cottage." That was the grab line. And the book was free. A good way to introduce one to a new (to me) auther, so "what the hey"...I bought in. I really enjoyed this first book, which also included wine parings with meals. To add an extra plus, the mystery was interspe ...more
Sandy Digger
Sep 27, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Murder Uncorked

This was a fairly fast paced mystery that starts with a waitress who is very knowledgeable about wine & gets into trouble when she accidentally dumps a meal on a woman who has come into the restaurant where she works, on a date. She winds up getting fired but the woman’s date goes looking for her and apologizes for his date’s actions.
This ends in her going with him to his vineyard on a job interview where she ends up finding a body which leads into a rather good mystery. Well wor
Nancy H
Sep 14, 2017 rated it really liked it
This was a quick mystery read, but quite good. Nikki Sands is going to be starting a new job at a winery in the Napa Valley, but has second thoughts when she finds a dead body outside her cottage on her first night there. When another body turns up soon after, she has to decide whether to use her own detecting skills, learned through playing a role as a detective once on a TV show, or to leave and go back to safety, and no job. It is well-plotted, with good characters, and a nice fast pace.
Jun 30, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: mystery
Picked it up on a friend's recommendation with the hope of discovering a great new series. I do not read 'deep' books but the characters and writing were so banal. I forced myself to finish it in the hope that the writing would improve or I would become attached enough to the characters to ignore the rest. Didn't happen and this will be a one-off. ...more
Jan 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I picked this up because it was mystery and wine. Great combo to me. I loved the mystery. Had me guessing back and forth right till the end. I loved all the details about wine and I hope that continues in future books. There were a few unanswered questions for me and I hope they will be addressed in future books and not just some disposable details that were forgotten. Can't wait to read book 2. ...more
Christine Early
Hope you like interruptiond

Please, for the love of books, move ALL of the recipes to the end of the book, like normal writers. The constant interruptions of the story with one of more recipes was extremely irritating. Especially when the murderer starts to strangle another character. Jeez....
Morgan Thomas
Jan 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
A charming and breezy cozy mystery! I am a big fan of cozy mysteries. I've read about tea shops, scrapbooking, bakeries, etc., but this was the first time that I have come across one about a winery. Not only was there a great twist in the mystery, I also enjoyed learning a bit about wines and winemaking. I look forward to tracking down and reading the rest of the series. ...more
Robin Higgins
Mar 22, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: completed
I totally enjoyed the characters and the plot. It had some nice twists to it and the recipies sound tastefully delectable. I will be sampling a couple them at some point. Looking forward to reading more in the series. The romance and murders were a perfect balance with the characters. Definitely a great read!

Christine (KizzieReads)
This was quick and good! I enjoyed it a lot. I'm not a wine person, but the mystery was very well done, in my opinion. I didn't see any of it coming at all. I did think that one of the characters was charmingly sleazy, the other characters are not likeable at all, except for Derek. I found Nikki was a bit too over the top as far as what she was doing, but overall it was a good read. ...more
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Michele Scott is the author of over three dozen books - the most successful being the Wine Lover's Mystery series. She writes mystery romance books, whether it's in a culinary masterpiece or a paranormal adventure.
She writes mysteries as well as gritty thrillers that will have you looking over your shoulder. Her books have been on the New York Times, USA Today, Wall Street Journal, and Amazon best

Other books in the series

A Wine Lover's Mystery (7 books)
  • Murder by the Glass (A Wine Lover's Mystery, #2)
  • Silenced By Syrah (A Wine Lover's Mystery, #3)
  • A Vintage Murder (A Wine Lover's Mystery, #4)
  • Corked by Cabernet (A Wine Lover's Mystery, #5)
  • A Toast to Murder (A Wine Lover's Mystery, #6)
  • A Killer Margarita (A Wine Lovers Mystery, #7)

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