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18 April 2016

Review: 'Rose's Vintage' by Kayte Nunn (2016)

British blow-in, Rose Bennett, is heartbroken, overweight, irritable and a long way from home. She isn’t sure what exactly she’s doing at Kalkari Wines in the Australian Shingle Valley – it’s the middle of winter and far from the lush, romantic vineyard setting she’d been expecting. 

Her brother thinks she’s spying for him, her bad-tempered new boss thinks she’s the au pair and the nanny can’t wait for her to clean the place up. 

Discovering pagan bonfire ceremonies, bizarre winemaking practices and a valley full of eccentric locals, Rose just wishes she’d ended up somewhere a bit warmer. But as the weather improves, the valley reveals its beauty, and Rose starts to fall in love: with the valley, the wines, the two children she’s helping to look after, and one of the men there. 

When her boss’s estranged wife returns and her brother descends, wanting answers, Rose is forced to make the hardest decision of her life.

I have a review of quite an exciting April book release to share with all of you today! Several weeks ago I was contacted by author Kayte Nunn to see whether I was interested in reading and reviewing her debut novel 'Rose's Vintage', which would be released by Nero in April 2016. I was lucky enough to get a paperback review copy of the book and I really looked forward to giving it a chance, because I really liked the cover and the description, and had a good feeling I'd end up enjoying this debut... I also happened to be in the right mood for a read just like this one promised to be, so I hoped it would manage to live up to my expectations!

Rose Bennett needs a break from everything after the split from her long-term boyfriend, so she decides to go to Australia where she finds a job as an au-pair at a winery in the Shingle Valley. Owner Mark Cameron is a real workaholic, doing everything in his power to make Kalkari Wines a success, while also dealing with his two kids after his wife left them. Rose has her work cut out for, but is ready to take on the challenge that is thrown her way. What she wasn't expecting as part of that challenge, was to fall in love with an Australian man. It was never Rose's plan to stay in Australia, but suddenly things start to change and Rose realises she will have to make some pretty important decisions pretty soon...

As I was reading the first chapter of this book, I already knew I was going to love it and that indeed turned out to be the case. I immediately warmed to the main character, Rose, and the great group of secondary characters (from Astrid, the other au-pair, to Mark and his cute two children, Leo and Luisa), while also really clicking with the author's writing style. It was, to me, the perfect comfortable blend of description and dialogue, and it felt like I was easily flying through the pages of the book. The setting was also lovely; I've never been to Australia myself, but the descriptions in the novel were beautiful and have definitely made me even more curious to visit the country one day, hopefully!

Since the story is mainly set at a winery in the Australian countryside, there's quite a bit of talk about wine and all the processes around it. I know absolutely nothing about wine, but luckily this didn't lead to any difficulty understanding what was going on in the novel. I really loved that there was a good romantic storyline in the book, but also a focus on the other things going on in Rose's life; once again a great mix. Overall, 'Rose's Vintage' is a wonderful debut novel by author Kayte Nunn; a light-hearted, well-written and simply great read with a lovely storyline and easily likeable characters, without a doubt a read worth picking up!
For more information about this book: / / Goodreads

Thanks to the author for providing me with a review copy in exchange for an honest review.

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