The Chardonnay Charade (Mass Market Paperbound)

By Ellen Crosby

Pocket Books, 9781416535980, 330pp.

Publication Date: July 29, 2008



Mixing fine wine and murder produces "another hit" (Kirkus Reviews) in Ellen Crosby's second mystery as Virginia vineyard owner Lucie Montgomery discovers that uncovering a killer can bring a harvest of dilemma and danger.

Lucie Montgomery thinks she has troubles enough with a freak spring frost that is threatening to kill her tender young Chardonnay grapes, but when the body of Georgia Greenwood, a controversial political candidate, is found lying in her vineyard, the situation becomes complex indeed. Suspicion immediately falls on Georgia's husband, Ross Greenwood, who is not just Lucie's doctor but also a close friend. Determined to prove Ross's innocence, Lucie crosses swords with her attractive but cantankerous winemaker, Quinn Santori. Then a second vineyard-related death drives the tension even higher. Lucie still believes that in vino veritas -- in wine there is truth -- but she's starting to wonder if her own risk level is moving into the danger zone along with this year's Chardonnay.

Praise For The Chardonnay Charade

"Like a fine wine, Crosby's debut is complex and intricate.... Crosby has seamlessly woven in details about wine making and interesting historical tidbits.... This is a terrific kickoff to what promises to be a highly satisfying new series."

-- Publishers Weekly

"A neat whodunit, supported by enough wine-making lore to give it some extra body."

-- The New York Times Book Review

"A fast-paced, intriguing debut that holds interest from cover to cover."

-- Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

"An absorbing plot, rich with details on the wine industry and an evocative sense of the lush Virginian countryside."

-- Booklist

"Fast-paced...a treat for those who like unusual settings."

-- Library Journal

"Superb. Crosby delivers a fine mystery full of twists, realistic characters, and finely ladled suspense."

-- South Florida Sun-Sentinel