Author: Laura Dave
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Genre: Adult/Contemporary Fiction
⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Georgia Ford is marrying the man of her dreams, that is until she discovers he has kept a secret from her. A secret that threatens to tear them apart and forces her to flee back home to the family vineyard in Sonoma County seeking comfort and security. When she arrives she learns that Ben is not the only who has been keeping secrets. Nothing is as it should be and Georgia must now face life and herself as she attempts to understand what she truly wants.
“You have to grow about eight hundred grapes to get just one bottle of wine. If that isn’t an argument to finish the bottle, I don’t know what is. —Anonymous”
― Laura Dave,
This is my first title by author Laura Dave, and I do not normally read very much contemporary/adult fiction. I dove out of my “comfort” zone for this one. The reviews were so overwhelmingly positive that I felt like it would be a shame not to at least test the waters. So I jumped on board and added this to my summer book haul.
My first impressions were not amazing. The cover with its simple design and a plot that snags at your attention a bit with the promise of secrets. I truly had no idea what to expect. I was honestly concerned this was going to read as a romance novel so I hesitated. I literally read this book because people were saying I should. So I forced myself to dive in. Then it happened..
I fell in love with Eight Hundred Grapes. It was totally unexpected and completed welcomed.
Told through the eyes of our female protagonist Georgia Ford, I was completely charmed. I found myself falling in love with not only Georgia, but each individual character. Laura Dave has built a family within this novel. It was almost too easy to relate to Georgia and her family. From the moment she walks into the Brother’s Tavern, I was hooked.
The plot-line is straightforward. Problems arise and must be faced. The author’s writing is simple and elegant. Each page flows easily as we read about the vineyard that she paints in such a manner, it almost feels like we have been there so many times before.
This is a short and sweet read, but the message of love and inspiration packed between the 288 pages is beautiful and powerful. Not to be confused with an average romance novel, this is a story about love in general. And it plays on the heart, feeling of a larger story told when a smaller one. Touches of light-hearted comedic moments alongside more serious and heartfelt events remind us what family and love mean. This is a must read for anyone who has ever loved, dared to question it, or simply felt like family can be too dysfunctional. I adored Eight Hundred Grapes.