Vintner's Daughter: A Novel

( 5 )

Overview

Loire Valley, 1895. When seventeen-year-old Sara Thibault's father is killed in a mudslide, her mother sells their vineyard to a rival family whose eldest son marries Sara's sister, Lydia. But a violent tragedy compels Sara and her sister to flee to New York, forcing Sara to put aside her dream to follow in her father's footsteps as a master winemaker.

Meanwhile, Philippe Lemieux has arrived in California with the ambition of owning the largest vineyard in Napa by 1900. When he ...

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Vintner's Daughter: A Novel

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Overview

Loire Valley, 1895. When seventeen-year-old Sara Thibault's father is killed in a mudslide, her mother sells their vineyard to a rival family whose eldest son marries Sara's sister, Lydia. But a violent tragedy compels Sara and her sister to flee to New York, forcing Sara to put aside her dream to follow in her father's footsteps as a master winemaker.

Meanwhile, Philippe Lemieux has arrived in California with the ambition of owning the largest vineyard in Napa by 1900. When he receives word of his brother's death in France, he resolves to bring the killer to justice. Sara has travelled to California in hopes of making her own way in the winemaking world. When she encounters Philippe in a Napa vineyard, they are instantly drawn to one another, but Sara knows he is the one man who could return her family's vineyard to her, or send her straight to the guillotine.

This riveting tale of betrayal, retribution, love, and redemption, Kristen Harnisch’s debut novel immerses readers in the rich vineyard culture of both the Old and New Worlds, the burgeoning cities of late nineteenth-century America and a spirited heroine’s fight to determine her destiny.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“[A] fast-moving romantic saga about two independent, ambitious people hoping to succeed in winemaking.This relaxing summer read offers an enjoyable armchair voyage to wine country.”

—Historical Novels Review

“One of the novel’s highlights is it’s rich history of the wine-making process through the eyes of a woman who is passionate and meticulous about each step…In the beginning , [Sara] endures nonstop pain and loss, but these tragedies transform her from a smart, hardworking girl into an independent, resourceful woman. At its core,The Vintner’s Daughter is a story of perseverance and transcending one’s past.”

—Booklist

“A young French woman, determined to pursue her dreams, shows resourcefulness and endurance as she journeys from her home to America in a novel set in the late 1800s…the plot is engaging and well-paced. Wine aficionados and fans of romance and historical fiction will drink this in.”

—Kirkus Reviews

“Lush and evocative, this novel brings the Loire Valley and its glorious vineyards to life in a story that will delight readers everywhere. Enjoy with your favorite glass of Merlot!”

—Adriana Trigiani, bestselling author of The Shoemaker’s Wife

“A lovely novel with sparkling dialogue, intricate plot and great characters. This tale of a young girl determined to hold onto to her beloved father’s vineyard in the Loire Valley will invoke inevitable comparisons to Gone with the Wind. Sara is a girl with grit and determination, and seizes what she wants from life with both hands, evolving over the course of the novel from an impetuous, headstrong girl to a mature woman. A pleasure.”

—Roberta Rich, author of The Harem Midwife and The Midwife of Venice

“An accomplished debut novel about passion and betrayal, loss and redemption, The Vintner’s Daughter takes you on a journey through vineyard-filled valleys on two continents, in language so evocative that after I turned the last page, I expected to look up and see the Loire.”

—Janie Chang, author of Three Souls

The Vintner’s Daughter is as compelling and complex as its heroine, taking us on an unforgettable journey from France to California’s Napa Valley, where providence rules and passions collide. Kristen Harnisch skillfully weaves the history of the wine industry into a visceral and haunting love story—to be read with a favorite glass of wine.”

—Holly Lynn Payne, author of The Virgin’s Knot and Damascena

Kirkus Reviews
2014-06-30
A young French woman, determined topursue her dreams, shows resourcefulness and endurance as she journeys from herhome to America in a novel set in the late 1800s.Seventeen year-old Sara Thibault isthe youngest daughter of a Loire Valley vintner, and she hopes to follow in hisfootsteps. She's well-versed in the intricacies of winemaking and understandsthe importance of a strong grape crop, but Sara doesn't anticipate the seriesof events that threatens to derail her dreams. Her sister, Lydia, is engaged toBastien Lemieux, the eldest son of the area's wine broker. He's handsome, butSara suspects he also possesses a cruel streak, a sharp contrast to his kindyounger brother, Philippe, who left for America following a scandalous episode.When Sara's father is killed in a mudslide and leaves behind a sizable debt,her mother sells the vineyard to the Lemieux family, and Lydia marries Bastien.Distraught but not defeated, Sara vows one day to reclaim her family's legacyand blames the Lemieux family for her father's death. (The accident happened ashe was traveling to find a better price for his wine than that offered byLemieux senior.) Bastien proves Sara's suspicions correct: He brutalizes Lydia,and when he attacks Sara, her response is so forceful that she must fleeFrance to avoid dire consequences. A pregnant Lydia accompanies her, and theyset sail for America. Although Sara's path becomes more difficult, she doesn'tlose sight of her goal. Using her dwindling funds, she travels to Californiahoping to make her mark in its flourishing winemaking industry and ends up in asituation that could take her full circle. Harnisch's palatable debut isenriched with historical detail about the wine industry. Sara is a dynamicheroine, but secondary characters would benefit from further development. Evenso, the plot is engaging and well-paced.Wine aficionados and fans of romanceand historical fiction will drink this in.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781631529290
  • Publisher: She Writes Press
  • Publication date: 8/5/2014
  • Edition description: New
  • Sales rank: 518,345
  • Product dimensions: 9.10 (w) x 6.00 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

Kristen Harnisch drew upon her extensive research and experiences living in the San Francisco Bay Area and visiting the Loire Valley to create the story for The Vintner's Daughter, her debut novel. The Vintner's Daughter is the first in a series about the changing world of vineyard life at the turn of the century. Ms. Harnisch has a degree in economics from Villanova University, and currently resides in Connecticut. Visit her online at www.kristenharnisch.com or follow her on Twitter @KristenHarnisch.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
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Sort by: Showing all of 5 Customer Reviews
  • Posted November 8, 2014

    This is one of the best books, I have ever read.  I can't wait f

    This is one of the best books, I have ever read.  I can't wait for the next book!  It is very rich in the history of wine in the Napa valley.  I had a hard time putting the book down the story just keeps moving.  I am going to buy a few of these book for Christmas presents.  This book needs to be read!  

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 9, 2015

    A great read! The perfect combination of historical detail, roma

    A great read! The perfect combination of historical detail, romance and well-developed characters that brings you into the turn f the century world, compelling you to read through to the end, and hoping for the sequel! I highly recommend it!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 30, 2015

    I Also Recommend:

    The Vintner's Daughter is a compelling page-turner by Kristin Ha

    The Vintner's Daughter is a compelling page-turner by Kristin Harnisch.  The spirited heroine is a very likable young woman who overcomes 
    tragedy and betrayal and goes on to make a new successful life in the New World of California's Napa Valley.  I enjoyed reading about the 
    winemaking process in France and California at the turn of the century.  I very much look forward  to the next book in the series about the
    Vintner's Daughter.    

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted January 20, 2015

    An excellent novel whose characters are still in my head even da

    An excellent novel whose characters are still in my head even days after I read it. The main character is likable and by the end becomes beloved for all she goes through-and her passion for family and her calling to be a Vintner keeps her alive in my head. If you are at all wavering, pick it to read-it will not disappoint you!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted September 12, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    3.5/5 The Vintner's Daughter is Kristen Harnisch's debut novel.

    3.5/5 The Vintner's Daughter is Kristen Harnisch's debut novel. The beautiful cover and a blurb by one of my favourite historical authors, Roberta Rich, convinced me to pick up the book.

    Seventeen year old Sara Thibault's father is a vintner in the Loire Valley, France in 1895. With no sons, he has passed on his knowledge to Sara, who hopes to continue the family legacy. But when her father dies, and her sister marries badly, Sara's vision of the future quickly changes. The sisters run to America where Sara eventually wends her way to the Napa Valley wineries.

    Historical fiction fans are going to enjoy this one. Harnish has chosen a different and quite interesting platform for her novel. The descriptions of wine making techniques were all new to me. The vineyard settings and methods were richly drawn and well researched. Part of the novel takes place in New York City and this setting is also well portrayed. This is a time period and place I enjoy, so the US setting was my favourite. Harnisch touches on social issues of the time as well - the Suffragette movement and Prohibition.

    But at it's heart, The Vintner's Daughter is a character driven novel. Sara is a protagonist that the reader can't help but root for. She's facing insurmountable odds, but her loyalty, drive and feisty spirit carry her forward. Oh, and did I mention the romantic elements? Uh huh. In addition to the dastardly brother in law, there's another brother who is the opposite side of the coin. And he just happens to be a vintner....

    Harnisch has taken a familiar story of family loyalty, loss, love and redemption and given it her own stamp with the wine element. Fans of historical romantic fiction will enjoy The Vintner's Daughter - best enjoyed with a glass of wine

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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