The Vintner’s Daughter
By: Kristen Harnisch
In one book, I have never felt a broader array of emotions, and whole heartedly enjoyed the experience. Kristen Harnisch, in her debut novel, has woven a passionate story about a young woman who must leave a home, a family and a country for which she cares deeply, to travel across the world in search of safety and her dream. In the sun drenched California Countryside Sara Thibault, is alone, broke and caring for a baby in a world where she does not speak the language. She does understand the art of growing grapes and producing wine. These skills propel on her on a crash course to find success as well as risk the loss of everything she has come to gain – most important of which is her safety. Harnisch brought me laughter, and joy, grief and sorrow, pride, guilt and hope in the The Vintner’s Daughter.
She took me on a journey, plucking me from today and plopping me in another time, another place and another world. Here there is little chance of a woman running a vineyard let alone running from a husband or the law. Here there is duty and expectation which shatter under self preservation and the protection of loved ones. Here, in The Vintner’s Daughter there is a story that you can return to over and over again.
Expertly written, and thoroughly researched, Harnisch’s first novel is a pleasure to read. Page after page delivers vivid descriptions of the colorful country and the sensual process that is wine making. She has mastered the art of storytelling and delivered her readers, dare I say it – the perfect novel. From mothers to daughters, friends and neighbors this book is one to share and treasure. Curl up with a glass of wine or your morning coffee and dive headfirst into the exciting and challenging world of young Sara Thibault, Luc, Philippe and a cast of characters as rich and colorful as a good glass of wine.