The Merlot Murders: A Wine Country Mystery

Ellen Crosby, Author . Scribner $24 (286p) ISBN 978-0-7432-8990-0

Like a fine wine, Crosby's debut is complex and intricate. Lucie Montgomery, an American ex-pat who's been holed up in France for two years, returns to her family's vineyard in the Virginia countryside after the death of her father in a supposed hunting accident. Once home, Lucie discovers that the vineyard is collapsing under huge debt; her brother, Eli, has turned into a materialistic jerk; her little sister has taken up with Lucie's ex; and her godfather, Fitz, has become a lush. When, on the heels of papa Montgomery's funeral, Fitz is found dead, Lucie's suspicions are stoked. These deaths were no accident, and suspects abound. Crosby, a freelance reporter for the Washington Post , has seamlessly woven in details about wine making and interesting historical tidbits about Thomas Jefferson's (unsuccessful) efforts to establish a wine industry in early Virginia. This is a terrific kickoff to what promises to be a highly satisfying new series. (Aug.)

Reviewed on: 06/12/2006
Release date: 08/01/2006
Genre: Fiction
Paperback - 304 pages - 978-1-5011-8843-5
Mass Market Paperbound - 340 pages - 978-1-4165-3604-8
Ebook - 304 pages - 978-0-7432-9389-1
Hardcover - 465 pages - 978-0-7862-9068-0
Compact Disc - 978-0-7927-4525-9
Paperback - 368 pages - 978-1-5011-0765-8
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