Narrator: Joy Osmanski
on June 2nd 2015
Genres: Fiction, Contemporary Women, Literary, General
Length: 8 hrs. 6 mins.
What if your beloved fiancé, he of the crinkly smile and the irresistible British accent, had kept a life-changing secret from you? And what if, just a week before your dream wedding, you discovered it?
When these questions become realities for bride-to-be Georgia Ford, she does the only thing that seems to make sense. She runs. She hops in her car and drives through the night, from Los Angeles to Sonoma, to her safe haven, to her messy and loving family and their acclaimed family winery. Georgia craves the company of those who know her best and whom she truly knows. And on the eve of the harvest, Georgia knows she'll find solace - and distraction - in familiar rituals. But when Georgia arrives home, nothing is at all familiar. Her parents, her brothers, the family business are all unrecognizable. It seems her fiancé isn't the only one who's been keeping secrets. And, much to Georgia's dismay, it seems likely that this harvest may be the family's last.
Best-selling author Laura Dave has been dubbed "a wry observer of modern love" (USA Today), a "decadent storyteller" (Marie Claire), and "compulsively readable" (Woman's Day). Set in the lush backdrop of Sonoma's wine country, Eight Hundred Grapes is a heartbreaking, funny, and deeply evocative novel about love, marriage, family, wine, and the treacherous terrain in which they all intersect.
In Eight Hundred Grapes, a Los Angeles bride-to-be finds out a big secret about her fiancé and hightails it out of town to her family’s wine country estate. She’s hoping to get some perspective on this situation but her family’s troubles bring on a whole other set of problems. This novel has a picturesque setting, lots of drama, and of course some wine making trivia (the title refers to the number of grapes needed to make a bottle of wine).
I lived in the San Francisco Bay Area for many years and made several trips to the Wine country. It was my happy place to go to escape the city, drink wine and visit great restaurants. So the setting was a big draw for me to read this novel, my first by Laura Dave (The First Husband). The runaway bride Georgia is a lawyer who seems to have everything together and is someone everyone relies on. But this wrinkle with her (gorgeous, British architect) fiancé has her thrown and questioning her life choices.
Maybe I’ve seen too many romantic comedies but the ending of Eight Hundred Grapes was pretty easy to predict. Still, this is a very readable, engaging read about family dynamics and matters of the heart. I’d definitely consider packing this one for your next vacation, or for your next wine-themed book club event.
I listened to the Eight Hundred Grapes audiobook, read by Joy Osmanski. She does a great job interpreting Georgia’s voice and also gets to play with British and Southern accents. This was an enjoyable, quick listen that I’d recommend taking with you on your own summer adventures. Take a listen: