The Viognier Vendetta
A Wine Country Mystery
By Ellen Crosby
(Scribner, Hardcover, 9781439163863, 272pp.)
Publication Date: August 3, 2010
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Ellen Crosby’s "beguiling" (Kirkus Reviews) fifth mystery takes readers into Washington’s corridors of power, where Lucie Montgomery uncovers a political and financial scandal while trying to locate her missing friend.
WHEN LUCIE MONTGOMERY VISITS Washington, D.C., during cherry blossom season she doesn’t expect her reunion with old friend Rebecca Natale is a setup. But Rebecca disappears into thin air after running an errand for her boss, billionaire philanthropist and investment guru Sir Thomas Asher. Also missing: an antique silver wine cooler looted by British soldiers before they burned the White House during the War of 1812.
The next morning Lucie identifies Rebecca’s neatly folded clothes found in a rowboat floating in the Potomac River. Is it suicide, murder—or an elaborate scheme to disappear? A clandestine meeting in the U.S. Capitol, a startling revelation on a windy hill, and cryptic messages from Rebecca cloaked in eighteenth-century poetry are all part of the suspenseful tale of whether Rebecca is alive or dead—and the truth about Asher Investments.
Featuring an absorbing plot, colorful characters, and fascinating winemaking detail, The Viognier Vendetta combines an entertaining mystery with luminous prose that has become Crosby’s trademark.
Ellen Crosby is the author of six books in the Virginia wine country mystery series: The Viognier Vendetta, The Riesling Retribution, The Bordeaux Betrayal, The Chardonnay Charade, and The Merlot Murders. She also wrote Moscow Nights, a stand-alone novel published in London. A former freelance reporter for The Washington Post and the Moscow correspondent for ABC Radio News, Crosby lives in Virginia with her family. Learn more about her at EllenCrosby.com
“Ellen Crosby is a writer with flair, and her compelling plot, likeable heroine, wealth of wine lore and sure sense of Virginia’s horse country combine in a crisp read that goes down smoothly with a pleasant finish.”—Richmond Times-Dispatch
“Ellen Crosby's fourth Virginia wine country mystery, The Riesling Retribution, really hits the spot. A body unearthed by a tornado, a suspicious vineyard manager, love triangles, theft and wine. It's a perfect combination.” – The Post and Courier (Charleston)
“A sophisticated story with a flawed but highly determined protagonist who intrigues. The descriptions of Virginia wine country and the many facets of winemaking will hook readers. Likewise, the history element nicely complements the mystery, and the romance is equally well done.”—Romantic Times
“The mystery element in this entertaining, fast-paced series is enhanced by both the fascinating winemaking details and the Civil War background.”--Booklist
“Crosby’s pleasing fourth will delight current fans and surely add new ones.”--Kirkus
"The only difficulty that readers will have with The Viognier Vendetta is taking time from the brisk plot to open a bottle of wine. The book works well as an amateur-sleuth novel but also explores the value of friendship, independence and wine lore. . . .The Viognier Vendetta proves to be a fine vintage."--Oline Cogdill, The Miami Herald
"A fascinating mystery with a great plot, vivid characters and the art of wine making. The historical information is like frosting on a cake, making this a thoroughly delicious read."--Romantic Times on Viognier Vendetta
"Crosby's deft hand at plotmaking, memorable characters and seamless prose are again in evidence . . . a book to savor--and suitable for gulping."--Richmond Times-Dispatch on The Viognier Vendetta