Alternate History, Audible, Fly Girl, Fly Girl Review, kindle unlimited, Luanne G. Smith, Netgalley, Paranormal Romance, The Conjurer, The Glamourist, The Vine Witch, The Vine Witch Series, Wickedcoolflight
A Washington Post and Amazon Charts bestseller.
“Cleverly crafted…The Vine Witch is a grown-up fairy tale with a twisty-turn-y story line of magic, love, and betrayal that holds your attention…Pure escapism.” —Forbes
A young witch emerges from a curse to find her world upended in this gripping fantasy set in turn-of-the-century France.
For centuries, the vineyards at Château Renard have depended on the talent of their vine witches, whose spells help create the world-renowned wine of the Chanceaux Valley. Then the skill of divining harvests fell into ruin when sorcière Elena Boureanu was blindsided by a curse. Now, after breaking the spell that confined her to the shallows of a marshland and weakened her magic, Elena is struggling to return to her former life. And the vineyard she was destined to inherit is now in the possession of a handsome stranger.
Vigneron Jean-Paul Martel naively favors science over superstition, and he certainly doesn’t endorse the locals’ belief in witches. But Elena knows a hex when she sees one, and the vineyard is covered in them. To stay on and help the vines recover, she’ll have to hide her true identity, along with her plans for revenge against whoever stole seven winters of her life. And she won’t rest until she can defy the evil powers that are still a threat to herself, Jean-Paul, and the ancient vine-witch legacy in the rolling hills of the Chanceaux Valley.
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Fly girl’s Review
Somehow I keep doing this where I want to read a book only to find out it’s part of a series. I requested The Conjurer from the publisher and when I started it, I realized there was way too much detail missing and I would have to read the rest of the series. So here I am. I read The Vine Witch and at first I was a little creeped out, but then I was all in for a little revenge served up with a little bubbly. Ok, not how it all went but I had fun imagining.
First question, what would you do if you woke up in a frog’s body? Well, the main character used her wits, what was left of them, and beat the spell after several long years. But she never gave up which is a pretty strong start already in my book. When she gets out of the frog’s body, she becomes super focused on finding the one who cursed her and getting revenge. She thinks it’s one person, but it turns out it isn’t who she thought at all.
I love how the magic is subtle in this alternate history of the French wine country. Magic isn’t done openly which feels like how it would be in this day and age. A non believer ends up buying her vineyard and she must figure out how to convince him to let her stay on and work her magic to save the winery. She tries to work her magic without him knowing, but finally she gets so angry at him for putting down her “intuition” she just shows him what she sees and he has a major breakdown. He falls back on science and when that fails his understanding, he moves on to his faith. Faith allows him to reconcile that some things can’t be explained between the start of a thing and the end, even though both points can be explained by science. It’s like wine–no matter what you do, sometimes it just works and sometimes it doesn’t.
I loved the perseverance both characters showed in the story. Neither gave up even when they wanted to. Both kept pursuing ways to reconcile their issues. She kept pursuing leads on the person who cursed her and in her care of the vineyard. He pursued no traditional avenues to reconcile his heart and his mind, between faith and science. Most of all though, neither gave up on love. They just let it happen and when they discovered in each other what they were missing they embraced it. Their strength of will kept each of them on task in different ways.
As you know I love strong characters and unusual stories. This one truly fits the bill. There isn’t even a cliffhanger. We get our happily ever after with a little wine and fireworks. I’m giving this a 4 of 5. I’ll be starting the Glamourist as soon as I can find time to squeeze it in.
5 of 5 Propellers
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