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A Good Yearby Peter Mayle
Synopses & Reviews
From Peter Mayle, a wonderful new novel steeped in wine—and the business of wine?and set in, bien sûr, Provence.
Max Skinner is not exactly setting the London financial world on fire?and when his supervisor steals his biggest client, it’s definitely time to inspect the vineyard in Provence that his recently departed uncle left him. Heartily and happily distracted upon his arrival by the landscape, the weather, and the food?not to mention the gorgeous notaire handling the estate and the stunning owner of the local bistro?Max almost forgets about his inherited property.
Which might have been a good idea, because the wine produced there is swill. But then why, Max has to wonder, is his caretaker so anxious to acquire the land? When a beautiful young woman from California arrives with what might be a legitimate claim on the estate, and knowledge of vineyards that far outstrips Max’s own, the plot begins its twists and turns into and out of truly wonderful complications and resolutions.
This is luscious reading?soothing us with the sensual wonders of Provence while it tells a fascinating tale of the hugely lucrative and competitive boutique-wine trade. It is Peter Mayle’s most satisfying, most delectable novel yet.
From the Hardcover edition.
"Mayle's breezy, uncomplicated fifth novel (Chasing Cezanne, etc.) and ninth book follows 30-something Max Skinner from a sabotaged financial career in London to his adoption of the Provençal lifestyle on an inherited vineyard in France. Max spent holidays at his Uncle Henry's vineyard as a child, so when he inherits the place, the prospect of returning is tempting; a generous 'bridging loan' from ex-brother-in-law Charlie seals the deal. The estate, Le Griffon, is in a dire state of disrepair and the wine cellar is filled with bottles of a dreadful-tasting swill, but it's nothing that vineyard caretaker Claude Roussel and prim housekeeper Madame Passepartout can't resolve. Max settles into his new life easily thanks to the attentions of local notary Nathalie Auzet and busty cafe owner Fanny. The arrival of young Californian 'wine brat' Christie Roberts, Uncle Henry's long-lost daughter, complicates matters for Max, but her surprise offer and Charlie's arrival lessen the impact of a vicious vineyard scandal involving a delicious, high-priced, discreetly produced wine called Le Coin Perdu. Mayle's simple story provides lighthearted if unadventurous reading and a fond endorsement of the pleasures of viniculture." Publishers Weekly (Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"[A]nother of [Mayles's] wise, witty, and sophisticated novels....The entertaining threads in this absolutely embracing novel are woven into a vibrant design." Brad Hooper, Booklist
Mayle's most satisfying and delectable novel yet portrays the sensual wonders of Provence while it tells a fascinating tale of the hugely lucrative and competitive boutique-wine trade.
About the Author
Peter Mayle eats, drinks, writes, and lives in Provence. This is his ninth book, and his fifth novel.
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