As summer nears, you may be planning more picnics. After all, who doesn't want to get out in the sun after being stuck indoors over the cold, rainy winter? The sun’s out, so you should be too! Soak up some vitamin D, grab a loved one, grab some drinks and your picnic blanket and head out to your nearest park. And how about a book to keep you company as you sip on your wine and relax? There has been an array of wine-related fiction published over years, many of which may be perfect for you to enjoy alongside your wine and your sun.
A Good Year by Peter Mayle
Mayle tells the tale of Max Skinner, an Englishman who has recently lost his job but has just learnt that he has inherited his late uncle’s vineyard. Embracing the new opportunity bestowed onto him in his dire time, Max moves to France to take after the vineyard, however, he soon learns that there’s more to it than meets the eye.
This book is said to be one of Mayle’s most entertaining ones. Since its release in 2004, it has been developed into a major motion picture, so you can get cosy on your couch and enjoy the movie once you’re home.
The Winemaker's Wife by Kristin Harmel
Set in Northern France during the crux of World War Two, this book follows the moving story of Inès, who has newly married the owner of a champagne house, Michel, when the Germans invade the country. Harmel tells a story of life, love loss, deception, determination, war, and, of course, winemaking. If you enjoy history as much as you enjoy wine, this book is the ideal pick for you.
The Widows of Champagne by Renee Ryan
Another captivating novel set during World War II, this book focuses on the lives of three generations of women in the Leblanc family. Ryan captures a moving story about the resilience of these women as they fight to save their family’s beloved vineyard. This story of how the Leblanc women battle against the odds to protect their lives and their legacy, has enthralled many readers and earned this book 4.3 stars on Goodreads.
Treachery in Bordeaux by Jean-Pierre Alaux
This book is the first in a 22-part series based on wine and crime mystery. Full of compelling characters and storytelling, Alaux tells the tale of a winemaker detective, Benjamin Cooker, as he attempts to uncover if a grand cru wine estate has been a victim of sabotage or negligence. If this book leaves you wanting more, follow Benjamin along through the other 21 books in the Winemaker Detective Mysteries Series.
Grand Crew by Tom Crago
Grand Crew is Tom Crago’s (complicated) love letter to Australian wine. This book follows Jude, a 30-something, sort-of musician, as he suddenly becomes rich due to a fortunate business deal. Finally able to fund his obsessions with wine and restaurants, he visits Paris, and finds himself opening the Melbourne outpost of a bistro and having to curate the perfect wine list.
So kick back and relax in your garden, by the pool or at your favourite picnic spot, grab a glass of wine from your Grand Cru wine fridge, and dig into one of these great books.