It's very appropriate that I got to try Horton Vineyards' Norton wine this week, as this murder mystery series is set in the wine country of Virginia. Set on the fictional (?) Montgomery Estate Vineyard, the books revolve around a series of repeating characters, primarily Lucie Montgomery, proprietress, and her winemaker, Quinn Santori.
Each book is an amalgamation of the murder mystery, the travails of raising grapes and making wine, food and celebrations, history of the region, and some minor bodice-ripping romance. All in all great fun.
As is often the case in books from a series, there are certain explanatory facts that are repeated in each book, which gives them both a similarity and a feeling of being the same book over and over. Apart from that minor quibble, the books are a great way to while away time with a glass of wine.
Ellen Crosby is a former freelance reporter for The Washington Post and was the Moscow correspondent for ABC Radio News. She is the author of The Viognier Vendetta, The Riesling Retribution, The Bordeaux Betrayal, The Chardonnay Charade, and The Merlot Murders, among others. Crosby lives in Virginia with her family. More info available at her personal website, via Facebook, and Twitter.