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Posted December 28, 2012
Imagine a French Robert Parker turned into a detective and being sucked into a mystery involving famous great wines in the Bordeaux region in France. I love this very curious, meaning nosy here ;-), character who can't help himself from trying to solve a mystery. All while testing wines for his world famous guide and enjoying life in a very epicurean way. Reading about this book, it seems that more than 20 books were published in France in the same series. And more English translations are coming. Can't wait!
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Posted September 6, 2013
Posted July 30, 2013
Part one of a series about detective work in the French wine industry. As a starter it was short and had a very simple plot however this did not spoil my enjoyment of the book and was obviously laying down the groundwork for other more in depth stories to follow. Benjamin Cooper and his sidekick Virgile are well introduced and although new colleagues have struck a mutual respect relationship.
An impressive first story and impressive translation from French. Recommend you try it.
Posted June 18, 2013
Benjamin Cooker is one of France's most famous winemaker, he also has doubts about his notes as he writes them about his wine in the Medoc region.He also interviews and hires an assistant Virgile.
His friend and neighbor calls for his help when it is discovered his wine casks have been contaminated. Benjamin has his assistant Virgile take samples to his lab. As the story progresses Benjamin looks for and finds old items connected to wines and purchases them. He also speaks to a medieval professor and learns some helpful things.
Anyone who enjoys wine and mystery I would recommend this book to and anyone who wants a short enjoyable book this would be the one.
Thanks Net Galley and Le French books
Posted April 22, 2013
Great writing is like a great wine. It finds those deserving of it.” – page 94
My favorite line from this book is also its last, for it holds the whole truth of the work.
Mr. Alaux and Mr. Balen’s style of writing remind me of Charles Dickens in his work “David Copperfield”. Layers upon layers upon LAYERS in the scope of description. This book is total immersion at its best – all the senses are stimulated, even through just the written word. The depth of understanding, and the care the authors put into taking their reader deep into their passion for wine, writing, and French life was a gem to behold. You can tell these gentleman wrote a story for themselves, that they would enjoy, and therefore, it became something everyone else would as well, because so much enthusiasm went into it.
Le French Book and Anne Trager did an amazing job in the translation, and the e-book version had the same integrity as the print, which was refreshing. I love their company’s motto: “If we love it, we translate it.” The written word is safe with champions such as these!
The story-telling style caught me off-guard at first. I found it unusual to have scenes of rushing building action, and then the next chapter would be two of the characters enjoying a drink over dinner and discussing the resolution of the previous conflict. Then I took a step back and realized what truly made this such a prize to read – the full truth of “culture”. I am getting to read a French book, written by French authors, who originally wrote for a French audience. I get to step off my current island of what I know and am familiar with, and delve deeper into the seas of the written word. That was worth the read in and of itself, and then you have this great tale on top of it!
Only 100 pages long, but that number is deceptive. At 40 pages in, we are still traipsing across the hills with Benjamin and his dog Bacchus, learning where we are, and who we are walking with. And yet, 60 pages later we have come to the resolution of the mystery in perfect form, with no detail left out, and many more added along the way. I am totally hooked. I can’t wait to read the next 19 translations – as they come – and recommend this to all my fellow readers who want a chance to truly see the world through someone else’s pen.
I received a review copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley