Lucinda's Reviews > The Merlot Murders

The Merlot Murders by Ellen Crosby
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Sep 03, 2011

Read in August, 2011

The Merlot Murders (Scribner 2006) introduces Lucie Montgomery, returning to her family’s winery in Virginia after the sudden death of her father. Leland Montgomery was killed in a hunting accident, and some believe it might have been suicide because of his debts. But Lucie’s godfather Fitzhugh Pico, a partner in the winery, is convinced that it was murder. Lucie has been recuperating from a car accident for a year in France, and is finally able to walk again, but only with the support of a cane. Lucie is determined to keep the land and winery in the family, as it has been for over 200 years, but Lucie’s two siblings are eager to sell the family home and winery. Her brother Eli is obsessed with supporting his pregnant wife in high style, and her rebellious younger sister Mia has no interest in tradition. Quinn Santori, the new winemaker and viticulturist, isn’t thrilled to have Lucie interfering in the fall harvest, and her friends and family are doubtful that Lucie can handle the physical effort of running a winery, but Lucie won’t be swayed. Then another accidental death, that just might be murder, makes Lucie suspect that someone close to her is willing to do just about anything to compel the family to sell their 500 acres. Who knew a winery was such a dangerous place? This absorbing debut novel, featuring a prickly yet endearing protagonist, is full of fascinating details about wine-making and the history of viticulture in Virginia.
Ellen Crosby page at SYKM

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