BOOK REVIEW | THE WINEMAKER’S WIFE
TITLE: The Winemaker’s Wife
AUTHOR: Kristin Harmel
PUBLISHER: Gallery Books
RELEASE DATE: August 13, 2019
GENRE: Historical Fiction, Women’s Fiction
The author of the “engrossing” (People) international bestseller The Room on Rue Amélie returns with a moving story set amid the champagne vineyards of northern France during the darkest days of World War II, perfect for fans of Kristin Hannah’s The Nightingale.
Champagne, 1940: Inès has just married Michel, the owner of storied champagne house Maison Chauveau, when the Germans invade. As the danger mounts, Michel turns his back on his marriage to begin hiding munitions for the Résistance. Inès fears they’ll be exposed, but for Céline, half-Jewish wife of Chauveau’s chef de cave, the risk is even greater—rumors abound of Jews being shipped east to an unspeakable fate.
When Céline recklessly follows her heart in one desperate bid for happiness, and Inès makes a dangerous mistake with a Nazi collaborator, they risk the lives of those they love—and the champagne house that ties them together.
New York, 2019: Liv Kent has just lost everything when her eccentric French grandmother shows up unannounced, insisting on a trip to France. But the older woman has an ulterior motive—and a tragic, decades-old story to share. When past and present finally collide, Liv finds herself on a road to salvation that leads right to the caves of the Maison Chauveau. (Description from NetGalley)
Yes…I finished another historical fiction book revolved around WWII. I’ve read several at this point and each one has a unique story to tell about this tragic war. Kristin Harmel’s, The Winemaker’s Wife focuses on two winemaking couples involved in the French resistance and how their lives impact a woman in present day.
The story is told from the perspective of three characters: Ines, Celine, and Liv
Liv’s story is set in present day. She’s just been divorced, her ex-husband has left her with nothing, and she’s feeling lost. So her grandmother Edith whisks her away to Paris to get her mind off of things, but her grandmother also has something important she needs to tell Liv. It’s something that will change Liv’s life forever.
Ines and Celine’s characters are set during the war. Ines is the wife of the owner of Maison Chauveau and Celine is the wife of the Chauveau’s chef de cave. Both women have many internal struggles with what’s going on with the war and the actions they are taking. Some of these actions are dangerous and hurt the ones they love.
I really enjoyed this book. It captured another facet of the war that I didn’t know much about and with each passing moment you can feel the danger increasing for Ines, Celine, and their husband’s. While there is a lot of danger, there’s still a lot of love within the book too. I don’t want to give anything away, but essentially love can grow in unexpected places even during the worst of times.
Everything comes together in Liv’s present day timeline. While the ending is sad to think about, I believe it was a perfect ending. It was emotional in so many ways. Towards the end I was thinking of all the different ways this book could have gone, but I’m happy with the way it turned out.
Overall, I would highly recommend The Winemaker’s Wife to those who like historical fiction and women’s fiction. A 5 star for me!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Kristin Harmel is an international bestselling novelist whose books have been translated into numerous languages and are sold all over the world. A former reporter for People magazine, Kristin has also freelanced for many other publications, including American Baby, Men’s Health, Glamour, Woman’s Day, Travel + Leisure, and more.
Her latest novels — The Room on Rue Amélie, The Sweetness of Forgetting, The Life Intended, How to Save a Life, and When We Meet Again — are out now from Gallery Books/Simon & Schuster. Her latest, The Winemaker’s Wife, a World War II tale of love, family, and betrayal set in the rolling vineyards of Champagne, France, is due out in August 2019 from Gallery Books/Simon & Schuster.
Kristin grew up in Peabody, Mass.; Worthington, Ohio; and St. Petersburg, Fla., and she graduated with a degree in journalism (with a minor in Spanish) from the University of Florida. After spending time living in Paris, she now lives in Orlando, Fla., with her husband and young son. (Bio from Author Website)
Thank you to Gallery Books for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.